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“American Reunion” – Early Review (POSITIVE)

March 22, 2012

I love the “American Pie” films…ok, let me rephrase that I love the original three “American Pie” films…nope that’s not right either, ok one more time, I loved “American Pie”, enjoyed “American Pie 2”, and tolerated “American Wedding”.  When I heard that the creators of “Harold & Kumar” were in line to reboot the “American Pie” franchise, I felt that this could work, and more ways than none “American Reunion” works.

Over a decade has passed and Jim (Jason Biggs), Oz (Chris Klein), Michelle (Alyson Hannigan), Kevin (Thomas Ian Nicholas), Stiffler (Sean William Scott), Heather (Tara Reid), and Finch (Eddie Kaye Thomas) return to East Great Falls, Michigan, for the weekend High School reunion. They will discover how their lives have developed as they gather for the first time in a long time. How has life treated our old friends, new ones, Jim’s dad and…Stiffler’s mom? In the summer of 1999, it was four boys on a quest to lose their virginity. Now it’s 2012, the world has changed and their quest for true happiness begins.

The movie pulls more or less of the same punches as the original film, and for nostalgia purposes that works. Stiffler is still a dick, Finch is as always interesting, Oz remains to be that loveable doof, and Jim is as awkward as ever, getting into more trouble than any man should have. There’s traditional subplot in the film that Jim & Michelle’s sex life isn’t what it used to be after marriage, and Jim of course gets into a huge mix-up with a horny young girl that he used to babysit. It’s very formulaic and very predictable.

But, the reason this movie was made was for the fans of the original films, well the original two at best. Sure this movie could have easily been a quick cash-in for the cast, but lets face it, besides Allison Hannigan getting major work these days, what with a popular sitcom on CBS, nothing much is going on for the rest of the cast here. So, it’s really a reunion as a cinematic comedy family to get back in touch with what made them popular thirteen years ago and is it possible to recapture that fire? Last years “Scream 4” tried to achieve that, but didn’t quite succeed. Here I think the cast and the movie itself have a better shot since comedies are an easier sell than horror films go. And with a world full of Judd Apatow’s & Todd Phillip’s, I think a good old fashion slice of American pie is just what the viewers of today need.

I saw the original film back in the summer of ’99 and the nostalgia just hit me all over again. It was awesome to see the MILF guy (John Cho) again, Stiffler’s mom still sizzles, and the Sherminator (Chris Owen) is as always ready for Shermination. “American Reunion” doesn’t come close to own the title of best comedy of 2012, I think that title is secured safely for “21 Jump Street”, but as comedies go it’s a blast and will surely leave the audience cackling like hyena’s. Be sure to stay for the credits, there’s an extra scene that will drive the crowd crazy.

GRADE: B

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