Dave's Rating:

1.0

Erectile dysfunction

There's a really funny movie in theaters right now starring Seann William Scott. It's called Goon. It's about what would happen if Stifler were a kinder, dumber and much more violent hockey player. In fact, you don't even have to go to a theater. It's also available on-demand right now. You could be watching it in five minutes, saving yourself a drive to a multiplex to witness this film.

And you're probably too tired to go out anyway, right? Because if you're over 30 that makes you the target audience here. And you've got a kid or you have to work in the morning and, besides, what are these movies supposed to be about anymore? Does anyone remember?

Well, I do. American Pie was a cannonball into a suburban backyard pool that nobody was much using at the time. It was full of raunchy sex gags that covered most of the bases. It was blatantly horny, proudly R-rated, unconcerned with having too much on its mind and it allowed all involved to go for theirs as an end that justified the means. Then it grew up and got as boring and stale as the characters are afraid of becoming themselves.

And speaking of characters, what gives with sidelining 50% of the original cast? The creators of American Reunion are, apparently, so unconcerned with female story-lines that they're barely allowed on screen at all. Part of what made this franchise jump in the first place was Alyson Hannigan's relentlessly funny sexual experimentation, Tara Reid's ditzy charm and Natasha Lyonne's sardonic commentary on the idiocy surrounding her. This time around, Hannigan sighs a lot and tends to a baby while screen husband Jason Biggs finds himself chased by an 18 year-old (this is the overwhelming bulk of the plot, by the way), Reid has about four walk-on moments, Lyonne has one and Mena Suvari is allowed to stand around and stare at Chris Klein but not much else. It's pathetic.

Now back to Stifler. Scott saves the day every time he's on screen with a howl and a crazed expression and a gift for knowing when to land the joke. Even when the script decides to arbitrarily punish him -- because it's got nothing else going on -- for not becoming as limp and lifeless as every other character in the film, he remains the franchise's id, the very last one its got left.

The reunion comes and goes, drained of a purpose other than getting everyone perfunctorily laid again, and the guys -- again, just the guys -- sit around and talk about "next time," a naked threat of more sequels. But how about everybody just keep it in their pants? No means no, after all.

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