AMERICAN PIE 2 (2001) 

Jason Biggs
Chris Klein
Alyson Hannigan
Thomas Ian Nicholas
Eddie Kaye Thomas
Seann William Scott
Eugene Levy
Shannon Elizabeth
Tara Reid
Natasha Lyonne
Mena Suvari

James B. Rogers



Time: 100 mins.
Rating: R
Genre: Teen Comedy

Normally I don't go to see sex comedies because in these PC times, they aren't much fun anymore. Wanton nudity is not usually my cup of tea, but that's what these movies are supposed to be about. They teach an invaluable lesson to the young men in the audience: you can look all you want, but the times you get to touch are few and far between. There's just nothing funnier than watching a group of dorky young men trying to get laid. What raises this film, and the original, above the chaff, is its complete lack of dignity, characters that are more puppy dog than horn dog and the fact that they discover something about themselves by the end. It's definitely not the deepest message, but the film manages to have a point, which is rare. Yes, Stifler is back and in rare form as the obnoxious creep of the group, but even he learns something about himself this time around.

What's somewhat disappointing here is the lack of a female voice, which was much more apparent in the ORIGINAL. Though all the ladies have returned, they've been relegated to the back burner, which is a waste of their combined talent. The only one who has any kind of role is Alyson Hannigan, who reveals the many different layers to being a band geek. The film picks up the story at the end of the gang's freshman year of college. With an endless womenless summer stretching out before them, Jim (Biggs), Oz (Klein), Kevin (Nicholas), Finch (Thomas) and Stifler (Scott) decide to rent a house on a local lake to try to meet some lovely ladies. Jim is still hung up on Nadia (Elizabeth), who is going to be visiting him at the end of the summer. Oz and Heather (Suvari) managed to stay together, but she's spending the summer in Europe, so the most he can hope for is phone sex. Kevin was too hung up on Vicki (Reid) to take advantage of the college coeds. And Finch, well, let's just say that night with Stifler's mother changed his dating life forever. It initially seems hopeless, yet they vow to make this summer the best one yet.

Stifler: "Jim, you're the only guy I know whose dick needs an instruction manual."

Though the film has its poignant moments, it's mainly made up of a stream of sexual misadventures, mostly starring Jason Biggs. It seems he has no embarrassment threshold when it comes to playing Jim. Whatever it takes to get a laugh...and believe me they do some sick stuff involving urine, a trumpet and super glue you have to see to believe. With Nadia coming to make his ultimate fantasy come true, Jim turns to Michelle (Hannigan) for help. She may be a band geek, but she's much more sophisticated when it come to sex. In some of the funniest scenes of the film, she teaches him how to make love to a woman like only a musician can. The rest of the guys have their moments, but this is really Jim's show. If you thought his tryst with the pie was outrageous, then you'll love the predicament he finds himself in here. It's a twist on the opening of THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY. Of course, Jim's humiliation would not be complete without his father's loving advice. Eugene Levy is absolutely brilliant, practically stealing every scene he's in...again.

There's nothing really driving this film like the pact in the first one, which makes it a bit sloppy and uneven. The subplots involving the other guys aren't very unique or interesting. It's nice to see the cast together again, but it felt like some of the characters were included because they were contractually obligated to be there, like Reid and Lyonne. It's not their fault, they just aren't given anything to do. The only other character to make an impression is Stifler and I'm not sure that's such a good thing. The film meanders in between its' big comic moments, but that's OK because you'll need the breather. Especially after the gentlemen's encounter with the "lesbians." If you're looking for a mindless film that will make you laugh without having to think too hard, this is the one for you. It's brain candy of the highest order, which is exactly what everyone needs once in awhile. This film is more stupid than clever, but it still made me laugh so I can't really complain. Both flicks deliver what they promise, which may not be quality entertainment, but as long as there's cheap, humiliating sex, that's OK with me.

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