Hot from the Oven

Most grownups would say that puberty was a part of their lives they'd rather not revisit. But the filmmakers responsible for American Pie seem paralyzed in a sophomoric state, unable to tear themselves away from cocky, naïve, amoral, and irresponsible behavior.

They're back with a sequel, American Pie 2, in which the same sexually reckless teenagers, now college age, continue to indulge in promiscuous and shameless adolescent antics. And there's not isn't a dignified grownup in sight. What is left of this tattered envelope to push? What boundaries haven't been crossed? Most moviegoers don't care: the movie set a box office record this week.

Phil Boatwright at The Dove Foundation is among the many dismayed (and apparently unheeded) critics: "When the cast is not indulging in sexual activity, they spend the rest of the screen time discussing how much they wish they were. Every single laugh is based on crudity, humiliation or shock value. Most of the characters are either high-school age or college freshmen, yet they drink and carouse with all the amoral fortitude of a buccaneer."

The U.S. Catholic Conference's critic reports, "Director J.B. Rogers' plodding, pathetic effort recycles plot points from the first film while again presenting sex as raunchy sport devoid of responsibility or consequences." And Preview's Mary Draughon confirms, "Inedible filling such as 57 obscenities, disgusting bathroom humor, breast nudity, group sex, a teenager having sex with his friend's mother, and teenage drinking complete this nasty mud pie." Focus on the Family's Bob Smithouser shakes his head: "We may still see a more bankrupt film released this year, but it will be hard-pressed to undermine as many teens' value systems as ...

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