Better Off Dead SparkNotes version: John Cusack plays Lane, a teenager who gets dumped by his girlfriend Beth and turns suicidal. While navigating his crazy family, a diabolical newsboy, a ski-off and his constant death attempts, he neglects to notice Monique, the exchange student across the street, who just might be the perfect girl for him. If this were a class it would be: P.E. -- the main character is a skier. Essay question: Chart the development and progress of Lane and Moniques relationship throughout the film. At what point does she develop feelings for him, and him for her? Why is she better suited to Lane than Beth? Final grade: A. (And we came very close to putting a plus on there). This movie may not be THE definitive dark high school comedy, but it gets a lot of points for originality. I WANT MY TWO DOLLARS!