Published Aug 01, 2001With the original movie blowing initial expectations out of the water, it could have been easy for the writers of American Pie 2 to completely lose the vision of what made the first movie work. Instead of the movie playing it safe and being fed the same tiresome jokes, this teen sex romp follow-up actually enhances its original counterpart and develops the characters even further a quality that sadly lacking in most sequels these days.
After the first year of college is over, the circle of male friends find themselves partying with their old high school's graduating class. Unsure as to whether or not they're seen as the cool college kids hanging out with secondary school grads or pathetic for trying to hold on to their glory years, the boys decide to get away from it all. All packed up they decide to head out to the beach and live in a resort for the summer and throw the wildest parties that will be talked about for years. The entire crowd return and things are just like they used to be for a moment until reality sets in and everyone realises that certain people have changed and moved on.
There really is no plot in American Pie 2, but this may be a good thing because trying to form some sort of elaborate story simply wouldn't have worked amidst all the one-liners and visual sex gags. Instead the film is made up of simplistic sub-plots (usually involving the quest for some love-making) that are thankfully equally touched upon and the movie doesn't dwell on a certain character or story line longer than it has to, keeping the film somewhat refreshing with its quick approach.
Some of the pieces of this film that worked so well are the glimpse into the world of Michelle's (Alyson Hannigan) infamous band camp life and pretty much every scene that involves Stifler (Seann William Scott). Also the fact that certain situations and characters (most notably Jim's Dad and the annoying character of Nadia) that could have been an easy target to exploit even more so in this sequel are pretty much downplayed and not over-killed. It could be possible that certain actors such as Shannon Elizabeth and Tara Reid were busy with other films and couldn't, thankfully, be used more throughout the film. The end result is refreshing more time to the more entertaining characters.
With the release of the absolutely dreadful Tomcats earlier this year, it goes to show that what chemistry the American Pie franchise has created is not as easy to duplicate as some might think. The fact that this film has launched the careers of some of Hollywood's more tolerable and, in some cases, finest young actors helps immensely and gives the film a lot of credibility as a true comedy. American Pie 2 follows in the footsteps of movies such as Animal House and thankfully not in the footsteps of the Meatballs IV. Hopefully the inevitable success of the American Pie sequel doesn't lead to gradually weaker instalments, but rather increasingly more hilarious chapters such as this one.