Archive for the ‘American Pie 2’ Category

82 – American Pie 2

September 5, 2001

Raunch used to be so simple! You’d go see Porky’s, you knew you were gonna see some T&A. Oh, and maybe a small heartfelt lesson about how people are generally good, even those who are different from us, as long as we have the same goal of getting laid in mind. Those were such wonderful days!

Now, everyone’s more jaded, even (especially) the kids. You show a kid the shower scene from Porky’s, and he’ll love it, but I bet after the first few viewings it won’t be as much fun. Kids need something new all the time. Now, American Pie is an R-rated film, so at least the intended audience isn’t the teen crowd, exactly, but then neither was Porky’s (or any of its knock offs).

The cast from the original American Pie is reuinited. The time is now one year later, and the gang’s home from college for the summer. Jim (Jason Biggs) still has his sexual hang-ups. Remember Michelle (Alyson Hannigan), the band-camp girl? Jim went to the prom with her, and she didn’t talk to him after that. But don’t worry, she’s at band camp again and figures prominently in this movie. It seems Nadia, the exchange student whose escapades with Jim made the Internet, is back in the country and is ready to hook up with our hapless lead character. What to do! Jim still has no experience. The guys try to help him out by renting a lakeside cottage for the summer. Meanwhile, Stifler’s (Seann William Scott) still trying to hump everything in sight; Oz (Chris Klein) is remaining celibate while his girlfriend Jessica (Natasha Lyonne) is in France; Finch (Eddie Kaye Thomas) is still lusting after the legendary mother of Stifler, after their much-talked-about union at the party in the first movie; and Kevin (Thomas Ian Nicholas) is aching after his breakup with Vicky (Tara Reid). There have been no drastic character changes, either; everyone’s as you’d expect after a year of college. Which means, of course, that all the guys are hornier than a sex addict in a penny whorehouse. But that’s what drives raunch comedies – the testosterone of single-minded males.

As in real life, although the males in the movie have grown up, they still think like high school kids. (And someday this nubile cast will learn that that particular characteristic never really leaves the male of the species!) But while the theme of the movie is sex, sex, and sex, hidden under the layer of bombast and teenage oversexdrive is a theme of tenderness and fallibility. When kids graduate high school, they think they know it all. “Bring life on!” they chortle with glee. “We know it all!” But there’s a certain vulnerability that everyone feels at some point, and that’s the issue of sexual conduct for the first time. And here’s where American Pie 2 deviates from other raunch films. In those yesteryear movies, there was always tremendous pressure for one schlub to get lucky once and for all. I’m talking huge peer pressure! But in this movie, while all of Jim’s friends want him to get laid, they never, ever make him feel like he’s below average or beneath them because he’s not experienced what they have. And that, to me, makes this a very special movie – although, rest assured, it’s still as raunchy as the first one.

In addition, the ending is so unlike those earlier raunchfests that you actually sit there and admire the screenwriters for not, for once, pandering to the least common denominator.

But hold on! Don’t look at me like that! You’re thinking that if it has good intentions and good messages, how much fun could it really be? Trust me, if you enjoyed the pastry coitus in the first movie, you’ll get a kick out of Jim’s misadventures in this one, too. The writing is way above par for movies in this genre, and the cast is both lovely to look at more than capable in their deliveries and actions.

American Pie 2: 7

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