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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » American Pie: Unrated Version
American Pie: Unrated Version
Universal // Unrated // December 21, 1999
List Price: $24.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Geoffrey Kleinman | posted January 4, 2000 | E-mail the Author
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It's easy to get the impression that American Pie is yet another 'gross out' film (in the vein of There's Something About Mary), especially considering one of the key scenes involves a main character having sex with an apple pie. But American Pie isn't just another gross-out comedy, it is a fun and entertaining tour through late adolencense, and it makes sure everyone's along for the ride

One of the things I really liked about American Pie is the fact that the actors and directors didn't take this movie to seriously. American Pie is fun and the key motivation for much of the film is to have fun. Rather than stringing together a series of gags, American Pie ensures you're in on all the jokes and makes the investment in its characters and story so you care what happens. American Pie is filled with some great humor, some of it is laugh out loud and much of it catches you off guard and twists around your perceptions.

Although I liked the movie, my feelings were mixed about the unrated version of the DVD. By releasing American Pie in both a rated and unrated version I had expected the unrated version to contain all the scenes which were cut to get the R-rating from the MPAA. This is unfortunately not the case and some of the cuts for the R-rating are still cut from the unrated version.

My real disappointment comes not necessarily from the fact that the Unrated version wasn't uncut, but from the fact that there wasn't anything on the DVD that discussed the cuts, the process with the MPAA and what creative decisions were made as a result. DVD provides such a rich medium to communicate this kind of thing, and the absence of it was very noticeable.

I guarantee, at the end of watching this unrated version of American Pie, you'll be asking yourself what scenes where added back in and there are little answers on the DVD.

Aside from the whole ratings issue, I was slightly disappointed in the image quality of the DVD. Universal typically puts out really great DVD's and so the fact that the picture was a little dark and overly black was unexpected (Since I didn't see the film in the theaters it's hard to compare to the original). The pictures still looks good, just a little dark. The sound on the DVD is pretty good, although the soundtrack doesn't do much to take advantage of Dolby Digital.

On the extras front the American Pie DVD is packed with goodies. I particularly liked the audio commentary on this DVD which did a great job of providing insight into the making of the film and the origin of many key moments. The directors were also happy to point out areas in the film where they made mistakes, something good to see from first time directors. In addition to the audio commentary there are some great outtakes, a behind the scenes documentary, a music video from Tonic, two trailers for upcoming Universal Pictures: Man in the Moon and Snow Falling on Cedars, and an area to jump to scenes in the film based on memorable quotes or songs from the soundtrack.

I would recommend the American Pie DVD, with the understanding that more could have been done with the unrated version, with that said American Pie a fun and entertaining DVD with lots of great extras worth picking up. The makers/bakers of American Pie make no bones about it- American Pie chronicles what it's like to be a teenager, and being a teenanger is R-rated. In this unrated version of American Pie you'd expect to get an unedited look at this filmwe are given the mostly unedited look at the ackword and destinct time that surrounds the passage into adulthood and having sex for the first time. I say mostly unedited because even though the unrated version of this DVD contains scenes cut to satisfy the MPAA for an R-rating, it does not contain everything that was cut which is quite unfortunate.

After watching this DVD you'll find yourslef trying to figure out what makes this film anything but an R-rated teen flick.

As far as the movie goes, American Pie is an off beat teen flick which does a great job of capturing the massive insecurites that most teenagers feel. It does a great job of showing

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