Out & About

April 12, 2012

'American Reunion' not half-bad

Teen sex comedies are usually, by definition, aimed at teenagers. "American Reunion," however, is that rare teen sex comedy that targets adults — particularly those who were teens in the '90s and fondly recall the original "American Pie" as some sort of touchstone film.

After two so-so Hollywood sequels with the same characters, then several dreadful direct-to-video efforts with mostly new faces, expectations were low for this final chapter, which pulls together the entire original cast for the first time in nine years.

Considering those expectations, "American Reunion" turned out to be not half-bad.

The franchise is no longer the raunchiest and no longer offers anything that we haven't seen before. It manages, however, to address grown-up problems and relationships — with a surprisingly heartfelt moment or two — while still throwing its characters into numerous juvenile situations involving the pursuit of sex.

"American Reunion" draws its original characters back with the gimmick of a 13th high-school reunion. Jim (Jason Biggs) is married to Michelle (Alyson Hannigan) — as per "American Wedding" — and they have a child. Mild-mannered Finch (Eddie Kaye Thomas) is a motorcycle-riding man of the world. Hulking Oz (Chris Klein) is a minor TV celebrity. Bearded Kevin (Thomas Ian Nicholas) is a house husband.

Party animal Stifler (Seann William Scott), though, is still the same, trying to live life as if it was high school.

Including virtually everyone from the original movie requires some pointless scenes, and also emphasizes that there are some really terrible actors — we're looking at you, Tara Reid and Chris Klein — involved.

Biggs, though, is comfortable in his awkwardness and has superb chemistry with Hannigan, even as their characters navigate marital troubles. Scott also delivers the goods as the incorrigible near-lunatic Stifler.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

Steve Ouellette's Movie Reviews

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Entertainment Videos
Adam Levine Launches Clothing Line for Women Paul Wesley Sinks His Teeth Into Directing Chelsea Clinton Is Pregnant Josh Thompson Streams Album to Hook New Fans Franco Leads Star-studded Broadway Cast ShowBiz Minute: Singer, Young, Poehler Sparks Fly With Derulo and Jordin on New Album Nas Movie Opens Tribeca Film Festival Zooey Deschanel Adds Designing to Her Repertoire Miley Cyrus Still in Hospital, Cancels 2nd Show 'Half of a Yellow Sun' Hits the Big Screen Diaz Gets Physical for New Comedy Swift's Bus Drives Into Country Hall of Fame ShowBiz Minute: Cyrus, Walker, Combs Pedro Pascal Plays 'Game of Thrones'' Red Viper Deeley Shows Acting Chops in Hulu's 'Deadbeat' Ora Strips Efron at MTV Awards ShowBiz Minute: MTV Awards, Lopez, Royals Stars Hit Red Carpet for MTV Movie Awards Conan Backs Colbert, Hosts MTV Movie Awards
CVPH Job Opportunities