Movie Magazine International

American Pie

USA - 1999

Movie Review By Monica Sullivan

If the names Dan Monahan, Wyatt Knight, Mark Herrier, Scott Columby and Tony Ganios don't ring any bells, there's no compelling reason why they should. Back in 1981, they starred in Bob Clark's low-budget teen flick "Porky's," a raunchy Canadian indie that made millions at the box office. Sequels followed in 1983 and 1985, but no matter what the credits said, the real box office draw of "Porky's" was the no-holds-barred gross-out factor.

Bruce Weitz's "American Pie" evokes the spirit of "Porky's" and gets laughs for the same reasons, but a year or two down the line, will audiences ever be able to forget what Jason Biggs as Jim does with a pair of tube socks or Mom's home-made apple pie? Or what happens to Sean Scott as Stifler after he swallows some leftover beer with an unexpected ingredient. And what about that unfortunate incident in the girl's rest room lowlighting Eddie Kaye Thomas as Finch? The talented cast members of 1982s "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" would look forward to long and lasting careers, because all of them were shown to great advantage and none of them, thanks to Amy Heckerling's expert direction, did anything onscreen that would haunt them in their quest for major stardom.

Alyson "Willow" Hannigan's "American Pie" turn as randy Michelle will neither hurt nor harm her career, securely established by "Buffy The Vampire Slayer." And Natasha Lyonne made such an indelible impression as Vivian in "Slums of Beverly Hills" that her arch appearance here as a sly gossip named Jessica represents a refreshing oasis. But the guys: I can't even look at their faces on a poster or in a magazine without vividly recalling their foolishness in this movie. "There's Something About Mary" was populated by stars who'd already established themselves in other films. Biggs, Scott, Thomas and co-stars Chris Klein as Oz and Thomas Ian Nicholas as Kevin are relative unknowns. Will they experience the same anonymity as most of "Porky's" cast does today? Psychics of the year 2017 aren't talking.

© 1999 - Monica Sullivan - Air Date: 7/14/99

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