Loser


Directed by: Amy Heckerling
Written by:Amy Heckerling
Starring: Jason Biggs, Mena Suvari, Greg Kinnear, Thomas Sadoski
Released: August 17, 2000
Grade: B-

Not exactly orthodox, Loser is a better-than-average teen comedy that starts strongly but finishes with a whimper.  Director Amy Heckerling is no stranger to attracting a young audience based on her previous successes - Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Clueless and Look Who’s Talking.

We meet Paul (Biggs) with his family at his country home being accepted to university in New York.  Paul is excited but worried that he may be overawed by the size of the Big Apple.  Upon arrival, he finds his three roommates are yahoos who are interested in beer, drugs, women rather than study.  Everyone thinks of him as a loser and things aren’t going too well until meets Dora (Suvari).  Paul falls for Dora but she’s currently seeing someone - her much older English literature lecturer, Professor Edward Alcott (Kinnear). 

Jason Biggs and Mena Suvari are reunited after their breakthrough performances in American Pie and are really good together.  They are certainly part of the better half of upcoming actors and actresses.  Their “different” hairstyles must have been a real blast for the film’s stylist.   Also keep an eye out for some small Hollywood cameos which I will not give away but were suitably chosen.

There’s quite a few sharp lines is Loser but it’s not a “split your sides laughing” type of comedy and that is made clear from the outset.  It’s a sweet story with some unusual locations and characters thrown in.  It’s not award winning material, nor is it that memorable, but it’s worth seeing Biggs and Suvari in action knowing they’ve both got a fruitful career ahead.