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Movie Review: American Reunion

I am not sure what decade it is. Can someone help me out? This weekend saw the return of the "American Pie" series and the re-release of "Titanic" in 3D.

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American Reunion
Robert Burleson

I am not sure what decade it is. Can someone help me out? This weekend saw the return of the "American Pie" series and the re-release of “Titanic” in 3D.

I am pretty sure everyone knows what they are getting with "Titanic," so I decided to give “American Reunion” a try. I have to say that I may have made the wrong decision. The studio execs behind “American Reunion” are hoping that the promise of some raunchy jokes and a mix of nostalgia will get people out to the cinema. In the end, they have made a very sub-par comedy with a handful of funny moments.

The movie follows Jim, the main character of the series, as he and his wife, Michelle, return to their hometown for their high school reunion. He meets back up with his friends Oz, Kevin, Finch and Stiffler and they proceed to get into crazy situations. Sadly that is the extent of plot to the movie.

There are a couple of side plots that come and go as the movie goes on. Jim’s dad, played by Eugene Levy, is dealing with the death of his wife and trying to get back into the dating game after three years. Stiffler has to deal with the real world not being like high school anymore. And Jim, Ox, Kevin and Finch have to deal with relationship problems in one way or another.

Sadly none of these storylines feel like they have any weight to them. The audience is expected to connect with the characters with very little screen time or even much dialog. The weak storylines are merely there to connect the ridiculous situations - some mocking current reality television (Oz was on a celebrity dance show), while others just being raunchy for shock value (I will just say that nudity is not shied away from). There were a few moments where I found myself chuckling. Nostalgia got the better of me a couple times when certain songs played or jokes were brought back from previous movies (The inclusion of Stiffler’s Seductive Mom, while a little played out, still makes me laugh).

I have to say that even with the low expectations I set for this movie it still let me down. I am curious how the film will play with young audiences who haven’t seen the original and don’t already have a connection to the characters. There are a lot of other comedies that handle both raunchy situations and dealing with growing older a lot better than “American Reunion." The only people that I can really recommend the movie to are those that really enjoyed the original trilogy of films. Actually, just going back and watching the original would be a better idea.

2 of 5 stars

Did you see "American Reunion" or "Titanic" this holiday weekend? What did you think? 


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