REVIEW: ‘Out of My League,’ – Is A Solid Rom-Com With A Problematic Start

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Out of My League

Out of My League is an Italian romantic comedy streaming on Netflix. Marta is a young woman who has just come into her own. Having moved into an apartment left to her by her long-deceased parents with her two childhood friends, Marta turns her attention to finding love, and she wants to find it fast.  The reason for Marta’s urgency is that she has a chronic illness that has her feeling the weight of time more acutely than most. But when she discovers the handsome Arturo, she decides to do whatever it takes to win him.

Romantic comedies have a bit of a checkered history. They are often criticized for presenting actions taken by their characters as humorous, goofy, or lovably awkward. In actuality, they are nothing short of behaviors that would get an individual slapped with a restraining order if they were done in real life. Presenting such behaviors as acceptable is not a good look. Unfortunately, the first half an hour of Out of My League is awash with this tired approach to romantic comedy.

After taking a moment to establish Marta’s life situation with the audience, the loss of her parents, her lacking “traditional beauty,” and her chronic illness, our lead protagonist is dragged out to a party by her two friends where she first lays eyes on Arturo. But rather than approach him in person, she manipulates a mutual friend, steals the friend’s phone momentarily so she can learn about Arturo, and then proceeds to spend the next 20 minutes of the film stalking, stealing items from, and invading the privacy of Arturo. However, she’s not as good at this as she thinks, and Arturo eventually confronts her about following him. Marta is able to negotiate a dinner date with Arturo. If he doesn’t enjoy himself, she’ll never trouble him again. He tells her to meet him at eight at his place. And, of course, she already has the address.

When Marta arrives at Arturo’s house, she discovers that his family is having a large elegant dinner that night, and they were not informed of Marta’s invitation. The following uncomfortable dinner is played up as if Arturo is a total jerk for setting Marta up for embarrassment. To be fair, it kind of is. However, the fact that she has validated his privacy and stolen his property for a stretch of time is treated as if it pails in comparison to Marta’s social humiliation. The movie implies the excusing of her actions because of her chronic illness to make the whole situation just a bit more distasteful. After all, the only reason why she is so desperate is because of how uncertain her future is. However, this uncertainty didn’t make her desperate enough to just talk to the guy in the first place.

Following this unfortunate evening, Out of My League sees Arturo apologize to Marta for his cruel behavior and asks her out on another date. A real one. From this point on, the movie delivers what is a genuinely beautiful story of two people falling in love, making a couple more mistakes, and overcoming those things as they accept who each other are. If only it weren’t completely mired by its atrocious first act.

The acting in Out of My League delivers both its heartfelt moments and its absurdities well. While I clearly have my misgivings about the story, I can’t fault any of the actors for that. They do their best to deliver it with the outlook and emphasis the narrative wants the audience to receive it.

So when it all comes together, Out of My League delivers a terrible opening act that excuses horrible behaviors and follows it up with a genuinely heartfelt story about love overcoming obstacles. Whether or not the first act is a dealbreaker for you will determine whether or not this movie is worth looking at.

Out of My League is streaming now on Netflix.


Out of My League
  • 3/10
    Rating - 3/10
3/10

TL;DR

So when it all comes together, Out of My League delivers a terrible opening act that excuses horrible behaviors and follows it up with a genuinely heartfelt story about love overcoming obstacles. Whether or not the first act is a dealbreaker for you will determine whether or not this movie is worth looking at.