Out of My League (2021) review – Netflix’s Italian rom-com limps towards a foregone conclusion

By Michael Frank
Published: August 19, 2021
Netflix film Out of My League 2021


Netflix’s Italian romantic comedy Out of My League cannot transcend the shallow nature of its premise and its characters.

This review of the Netflix film Out of My League (2021) does not contain spoilers. 

The premise of Out of My League (2021), Netflix’s Italian romantic-comedy from director Alice Filippi, comes from a sick woman, Marta (Ludovica Francesconi), stalking a rich man, Arturo (Giuseppe Maggio). Marta picks Arturo based on his attractiveness and that shallowness plagues the entire film. With a script by Roberto Proia and Michela Straniero, Out of My League can’t overcome this lack of depth, headed towards an obvious, almost painful ending for everyone involved.

Following Marta in her quest to win the heart of Arturo along with her worsening sickness, a disorder in which her lungs fill with mucus, giving her a shortened lifespan, the film never gets over the simplicity of her character. Marta, a shallower, less unique combination of characters in Amélie and The Fault in Our Stars, lives with her two best friends, as her parents died when she was young. She’s studying at the local university and works in a grocery store, reading the discounts and special offers in a sultry voice. It’s her guilty pleasure. 

On the other side is Arturo, a rich rower who lets his family control his life. Made of little substance, he initially dismisses and makes fun of Marta, who has been taking his belongings, researching him, and stalking him in her free time. Despite their perceived difference in looks and definite difference in wealth, he decides to give her an actual chance. The film stacks cliché on cliché like a tower that’s meant to fall, unable to withstand any semblance of deeper connection, character development, or ramblings about love. 

Together, they make a couple that should never have been together in the first place, not because of their physical features, but because of her obsessive activity. Filippi takes a stab at showing the toll an illness can have, and the importance of living life over letting a sickness control you, but it’s contrived, standing on the slimmest of stilts. Out of My League lacks the pathos of teen cancer films like The Fault in Our Stars and brutally lacks the quirkiness and originality of films like Amélie. The result: a half-film, a story that’s undercooked, filled with characters that deserve more. 

And that’s the case across the board. Marta should be with someone that has a bit more substance, creativity, and passion for life. Arturo should be with someone who didn’t just like him for his looks, or who just didn’t stalk him. Without inventive filmmaking, the entire endeavor falls flat, only gaining traction when neither of the lovebirds is on the screen. Despite admirable acting efforts, though not particularly worthy of singular praise, the characters are too thinly drawn to be redeemable. 

Out of My League might satisfy romantic-comedy fans looking to put something on in the background, especially if they’re fluent in Italian. It might even be a better film if watched on mute, allowing the obvious images to gloss over, so that you can watch two people fall in love without hearing their feeble attempts at dialogue and character development. But this 91-minute film won’t keep your attention and certainly won’t become a memory, fading away instantly after your eyes go from a bigger screen onto the smaller one in your hands.

What did you think of the Netflix film Out of My League? Comment below.

Movie Reviews, Netflix