American Pie: Reunion is the second film in as many weeks to have it's title altered for the British audience in case we don't know what it is. Known as American Reunion in the US, the marketing team for the UK decided we should keep the Pie in the title in case we forgot what film series we were watching?!?
Anyway, American (Pie) Reunion is the 8th part of the sucessful series. Yes 8th. There have been 4 striaght to DVD releases (AP: Band Camp, The Naked Mile, Beta House & Book of Love), all of which are worth avoiding like the plague as they have very little to do with the theatrical releases (Tenuous links via Jim's Dad cameos & Stifler's brother). So in actuality American (Pie) Reunion is the 4th in the series following on from the rather weak American (Pie: The) Wedding.
Thirteen years on from graduating from High School, Jim (Jason Biggs) & Michelle (Alyson Hannigan) are now married & have a child. This leads to them growing apart and having their own 'special time' which in the Pie films never seems to end well. A 'Class of 1999' reunion is announced and the graduating gang; Chris 'Oz' Ostreicher(Chris Klein), Kevin Myers (Thomas Ian Nicholas), Paul Finch (Eddie Kaye Thomas) & Steve Stifler (Sean William Scott) all descend on their home town of East Great Falls for the celebration. All of the gang have grown up (Well all but Stifler of course) and have jobs and partners, Oz is a Sports TV Host and former celeb contestant on Celebrity Dance-Off, Finch has travelled the world, Kevin has settled down and works from home as a Architect & Stifler is an office temp.
Everything goes as you would expect and chaos erupts when Jim meets up with his 18 year old next door neighbour, Kara (Ali Cobrin) who he used to babysit for & as it turns out now has a crush on him. The usual American Pie Hi-Jinks and debauchery descends on the gang as they try and make it to the actual reunion where the rest of the original class; Heather (Mena Suvari), Vicky (Tara Reid) et al. are also celebrating. Throw in a drunk Jim's Dad (Eugene Levy) meeting up with Stifler's Mom (Jennifer Coolidge) at one of Stiflers legendary party, (it's OK Jim's Mum died 3 years ago we find out.), leaving 'presents' in a cool box, stolen water skis and you have a rather busy reunion weekend.
After thirteen years you would have thought that it was maybe too late for this sequel. Well, maybe it is, as the jokes on the whole are recycled from the original movie and at times it seems like the characters getting old and not really moving on. There are a few wonderfully funny set pieces, usually involving Stifler or Jims Dad. Other than that it's a 3 horse story. The only characters that actually seem to matter are Jim, his Dad & Stifler. The rest of the cast are just hangers on. They let you know they are there in groantastic style to as Oz even utters the line "I missed your Wedding, I'm not going to miss this Reunion" referring of course to the American Pie Lite: The Wedding, which didn't manage to get the whole cast back. Although they manage to get them all back for this and it does seem at times they had to find a space to shoehorn them all in. We get fleeting glimpses of Nadia (Shannon Elizabeth), the Sherminator (Chris Owen), Jessica (Natasha Lyonne) & and of course the MILF boys (John Cho & Justin Isfeld), some work, most don't, but for fans of the movies it's nice to see them all one last time.
However, for the most part it is about Jim, who manages to wind up naked or self ridiculing himself, while still managing to be a babe magnet?!?! as virtually every young (18+) girl seems to want to have sex with him. The plot is fairly basic and and times a bit forced, mainly in the sub plots involving, Kevin & Vicky (Do we have to do this same story again?) & OZ with Heather. Stifler lights up the screen every time he's around, but maybe that's because Sean William Scott has been playing the same character in all his movies for the past thirteen years. So it's like Stifler never left. In fact Stifler end's up having the best of the story arc's with a brilliant ending for him, which you just don't see coming, but the pay-off is absolutely tremendous. American Pie fans should find something to enjoy here, newcomers will struggle to understand what's going on, so tracking down the original trilogy is recommended.
American (Pie) Reunion is like a new looking pie, but once you get past the flashy packaging, you discover that it ends up being the same old pie. Which is good if you like this sort of pie, but if you don't well, it will end up leaving a bad after taste in your mouth.