If apple pies could run, they would run for cover, because Jim is back for more awkward sexual antics in American Reunion, the long-awaited third theatrical sequel to American Pie no one asked for. Jason Biggs, Chris Klein, Thomas Ian Nicholas and Eddie Kaye Thomas have all returned to show just how little their careers have progressed since the 1999 classic. Despite being a blatant cash grab and by no means a comedy classic, American Reunion has enough laughs and goofy antics to make it worth a trip into the land of nostalgia.
And oh boy, nostalgia is the name of the game. Aside from the four leads, Alyson Hannigan, Mena Suvari, Jennifer Coolidge, Eugene Levy, Natasha Lyonne, Shannon Elizabeth and even Tara Reid and John Cho have returned to their respective roles for what appears to be one last hoorah... well, unless this movie makes enough money to warrant another sequel.
Oh, and yes, Seann William Scott is back as Stifler.
I was in high school when the first American Pie came out and have fond memories of the comedy, which still holds up well. American Reunion, which is directed by Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg (Harold & Kumar), is aimed at those of us who appreciate a small slice of... the past. From the music to the cameos and everything else, American Reunion goes all out to remind of us how great the first movie was.
And naturally, it's not as good as the original. Not by a long shot. The characters are older and less interesting, two of them married and downright dull (Hannigan especially) . They talk more about love and responsibilities, children and how obnoxious high school students are. American Reunion isn't as funny or memorable.
But it's still fun. And it is funny.
While Jim now freaks out when the gorgeous 18-year old neighbor he used to babysit gets naked in his car, wanting sex, and Oz debates whether he's still in love with Heather even though he's dating a scorching hot supermodel, the filmmakers have injected American Reunion with more than enough stupid and crazy antics to make the trip worthwhile. The movie is a bit more slapstick than previous installments, but Hurwitz and Schlossberg mainly hit the right notes.
And Sean William Scott makes the movie. As, sadly, one of the more accomplished actors in the film, he gets a more central role this time around. As the one character who is more or less unchanged from 1999, too, who also provides the energy and many of the laughs, especially in the third act which, while a little over-the-top, is pretty entertaining.
American Reunion is a cash grab and doesn't quite make me want to pleasure an apple pie, but it's a worthwhile sequel that fans of the original should enjoy. It isn't perfect and far from original, but it's a slice worth eating. Or something.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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