Loser (2000) - Rotten Tomatoes

Loser (2000)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: In the grand tradition of teen flicks, Loser comes across as another predictable and underwritten movie with nothing new to offer.

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Movie Info

After making Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982) and Clueless (1995), two of the definitive films about the joys and terrors of American high school, writer/director Amy Heckerling moves on to college with this bittersweet romantic comedy. Paul Tannek (Jason Biggs) is a bright but socially inept college freshman who has just arrived at NYU from the Midwest. Frumpy and studious, Paul has trouble meeting people, doesn't get along with his roommates, and most of his fellow students hardly acknowledge his existence. But Paul finds a soul mate in Dora Diamond (Mena Suvari), who has even more problems than he does: she's out of money, has nowhere to live, works a humiliating job as a waitress at a strip club, and has become involved with one of her professors, Edward Alcott (Greg Kinnear), whose callous treatment hardly boosts her shaky self-esteem. Dora gives Paul some advice on how to fit in with his roommates, and Paul lets her stay with him while she looks for work; when he becomes infatuated with her, he has to figure out how to win her away from Edward. Loser marked a reunion for Jason Biggs and Mena Suvari, who starred together in the hit teen comedy American Pie.

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Cast

Jason Biggs
as Paul Tannek
Mena Suvari
as Dora Diamond
Greg Kinnear
as Professor Edward Alcott
Dan Aykroyd
as Mr. Tannek
Colleen Camp
as Homeless Woman
Andy Dick
as Office Clerk
Steven Wright
as Panty Bar Man
Meredith Scott Lynn
as Dog Loving Girl
Taylor Negron
as Photographer
Andrea Martin
as Professor
Scott Thomson
as Cell Phone Guy
Catherine Black
as Military Jacket Girl
Rick Demas
as Bouncer
Sanjay Talwar
as Convenience Cashier
Tracy Dawson
as Drug Saleswoman
Carolyn Goff
as Kristen
Mike Beaver
as Boy at Concert
Richard Blackburn
as Security Guard
Billy Otis
as Prisoner
Jenny Kim
as Student Worker
Alison Sealy-Smith
as University Official
Martin Roach
as Veterinarian
Heidi Weeks
as Saks Saleswoman
Daniela Olivieri
as Store Tailor
Kavita Persaud
as Hi Ro Student
Corwin Hall
as Hi Ro Student
Andrew Storms
as Hi Ro Student
Serena Lea
as Hi Ro Student
Nicholas Michael Bacon
as Beer Store Clerk
Jack Jessop
as Grandfather
Mallory Margel
as Paul's Sister
Mark Patrick Carducci
as Bloody Nose Guy
Tanja Jacobs
as Party Goer
Darrin Brown
as Party Goer
Robert Tinkler
as Bar Patron
Katherine Shekter
as College Girl
Robinne Fanfair
as College Girl
Sadie LaBlanc
as College Girl
Silvana Kane
as College Girl
Kerri Michalica
as College Girl
Geoffrey Antoine
as Coffee Counter Guy
Danny Truelove
as Dancing Kid
Marc McMulkin
as Dancing Kid
Jonathon Fernandes
as Dancing Kid
Tiffany Leonardo
as Dancing Kid
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News & Interviews for Loser

Critic Reviews for Loser

All Critics (96) | Top Critics (27)

Mind-numbingly witless.

January 1, 2000
New York Post
Top Critic

Loser is just as it sounds.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Nothing's helped by a hasty ending.

January 1, 2000
Mr. Showbiz
Top Critic

It's a shame that this comedy self-destructs.

January 1, 2000
San Jose Mercury News
Top Critic

The movie makes you want to root for it, but it still comes up just short.

January 1, 2000
Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com
Top Critic

Dull.

January 1, 2000
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Loser

Amy Heckerling doesn't quite know what kind of audience she is trying to engage. If she's trying to show high school kids the problems and unexpected strife of college life in a metropolis, then she should have shown that world in a more focused way. If she's trying to be funny and quirky for the older subset than her characters should have been better written and less dickish. Besides being clinically underwritten, it's difficult to figure out who is the lead character, or at least the person we're supposed to sympathize with. Throughout the film we follow Paul (Biggs) and it seems that he is our protagonist. We feel for him when his dorm mates are mean spirited, when the girl of his dreams is misguided, and when everything tries to keep him from getting through school, but he lacks character development. He goes through hard times, but there's no resolution to be seen, and he doesn't change at all. Dora (Suvari) on the other hand has a mess of bad things happen to her, and then she changes her opinion about her relationship with her professor (Kinnear), which means she's the only character who evolves throughout the film. It seems that we should be following her, but then interwoven in her tale is that of Paul's, who just seems like some poor schmuck who never wins. Without any proper direction for our characters, and no change in their behaviors or thoughts on the world, there shouldn't really be any reason for this film to exist. It's trying to show the problems of college students, but it doesn't realistically depict them. Paul's three roommates are also pretty distracting, as they're rich, sycophantic rapists, who don't seem to get much comeuppance until the credits. Besides its plot defects it's also drab and very of its time, making this film a tiring slog.

Spencer S.
Spencer S.

Super Reviewer

My reviews are seldom this short and concise, but this movie was so predictable and unoriginal, that there's really not much that I can say or write about it. Unless, of course, I choose to go into the details of what made it so mediocre. But I'm not gonna do that this time, as it wouldn't really serve any purpose. It still gets a "3" from me for its entertainment value, but that's about as far as my generosity goes.

Mike S
Mike S

Super Reviewer

It's an incredibly dumb and cheesy movie, it kind of reminds me of Revenge of the Nerds. Only there's only one nerd and he's not really all that smart. There is almost nothing to really like about this movie, but nothing to make you angry either. It just reaffirms you that there are a lot of people who manipulate others, but everyone already knows that.

Conner Rainwater
Conner Rainwater

Super Reviewer

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