"American Pie" (1999)

Rating: R:18
Genre: Comedy
Directed By: Paul Weitz
Written By: Adam Herz
Released: July 9th, 1999
Runtime: 96 minutes
Studio: Universal Pictures

A riotous and raunchy exploration of the most eagerly anticipated -- and most humiliating -- rite of adulthood, known as losing one's virginity. In this hilarious lesson in life, love and libido, a group of friends, fed up with their well-deserved reputations as sexual no-hitters, decide to take action.

I don’t know how it came to be that I formed the decision to not only watch this film, but to subsequently watch the next two, and American Pie Reunion, in pretty quick succession. It’s a very particular kind of humour and I’m not entirely sure it was my kind of humour but there was still sort of something endearing about the characters…I’m pulling strings for an explanation here. I enjoyed them…I think. I just don’t know why!!

The first one of the series is probably the best in my opinion, as is usually the case in these situations. The circumstances the characters get themselves into are crudely outrageous. In every film but I think the first one is the better structured one and the most original. Awkward moments were abundant much to us as an audience’s amusement. Some moments will be etched in our brains for many years to come…But one couldn’t expect anything less going into a film like this I suppose… Eugene Levy is great! His scenes are cringy but it’s challenging not to crack a smile. You won't look at a pie the same way again. 

The second I did feel was necessary. Sometimes sequels are made for the sake of it and either don’t measure up or add little to the existing film. But in this case, I happen to believe it was necessary to continue the story. I felt the first film did end with unanswered questions. I don’t know if a sequel was always planned, or if it only felt like that because I knew there was more to come. I’m just glad that there was. The characters developed in a nicely paced manner and even grew as people if that’s fair to say.

The third film, American Wedding, was a bit…It was fine. Definitely the weakest of the bunch that I’ve watched. The characters are older now and everything was revolving around a wedding and a stag night and well, there’s a lot of those types of films out there, making this particular one less original. The jokes were much cruder and less on par with what had come in the previous two films. Plus, the character of Stifler became in even bigger pain in the ass which I didn’t think was possible. I really feel like they overdid his flaws in this film, they really made him completely unbearable to the point I almost turned off the film but eventually it settled down a bit. The characters of Jim and Michelle changed a lot too, they weren’t as interesting. I understand they’re older now and their characters have to grow up a bit but the whole wedding fiasco took away many of the character traits that made them unique in the first two films. I don’t know. I just felt this one was a lot weaker by all accounts. It wasn’t a bad addition but it would be my least favourite. 

As for American Pie Reunion wasn’t much better. It was interesting to see what became of all the characters and where their lives took them. They still get themselves into some sticky and raunchy situations. Stifler didn’t improve much from the third film, still fairly aggravating. One thing this film does enforce is that everything that was important in secondary school doesn’t matter. It’s kind of sad and reassuring at the same time. This felt like a film that was made for the sake of nostalgia.

These films are what they are.