American Pie Presents: The Book of Love appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. While not a killer transfer, the visuals looked fine.
Sharpness usually appeared good. The film didn’t exhibit killed definition, but it showed generally good clarity and accuracy. While I would’ve liked a bit more snap, it still offered nice delineation. No issues with jagged edges or shimmering occurred, and edge enhancement was absent. Source flaws also failed to appear in this clean presentation.
Colors were fine. The hues appeared reasonably vivid but could come across as a little flat at times. Overall, the tones seemed nice but not especially dynamic. Blacks were reasonably deep and tight, but shadows tended to be a little thick. To be honest, my complaints tended toward the nit-pick category; the transfer never became scintillating, but it was satisfying.
As for the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Book, it seemed fairly ordinary. Examine the audio of pretty much every other comedy of this sort and you’ll know what to expect from the soundfield. It was a front-heavy affair that usually didn’t offer much more than general ambience. Music filled out the surrounds, and some environmental information added a little pizzazz. Just don’t expect action-movie material from this restrained mix.
Audio quality was fine. Speech seemed intelligible and natural, without edginess. Music boasted good clarity and range, while effects worked about the same way. Those elements came across accurate and concise, though they didn’t have a ton to do. This was an acceptable “B-“ soundtrack.
When we shift to extras, we open with a collection of clips under From the Set. This area includes 10 segments that run a total of 19 minutes, 23 seconds. These mix alternate takes/lines with some sequences that are close to deleted scenes – close enough that I’m not sure how they’re different from deleted scenes. Nothing amusing happens here, but you will find a fair amount of nudity. The biggest negative? “From the Set” and the subsequent “Deleted Scenes” aren’t presented high-def, so their resolution isn’t very good. Boo!
17 Deleted Scenes last a total of 11 minutes, 21 seconds. Given the brevity of the snippets, you shouldn’t expect much from them. They’re mostly small tidbits that add smuttiness to an already tawdry film. Other than some decent nudity, they’re forgettable
Next comes a three-minute, 59-second Gag Reel. It consists of the usual goofs and giggles. Nothing entertaining pops up here.
The disc includes both the film’s rated and unrated versions. The former lasts 1:31:31, while the latter goes for 1:33:34. I guess it’s nice that the Blu-ray includes both options, though I can’t imagine anyone will bother with the “rated” cut. It’s not like it represents the movie’s theatrical vision, and raunchy movies like this usually are most appealing in their unrated editions.
A few featurettes follow. On the Set of American Pie Presents: The Book of Love goes for eight minutes, seven seconds as it presents remarks from director John Putch, executive producer Mike Elliott, prop master Kevin Santarossa, and actors John Patrick Jordan, Eugene Levy, Kevin Horton, Brandon Hardesty, Bug Hall, Melania Papalia, Beth Behrs, and Louisa Lytton. We find some notes about the cast, the sandwich-boffing scene and some fantasy sequences, and other notes from the set. The content remains fluffy and insubstantial, so don’t expect to learn much.
Just the Tips: The Love Manual runs five minutes, 50 seconds, and includes notes from Hall, Behrs, Papalia, Lytton, Jordan, Levy, Santarossa, and actors Kristy Moller, Tim Matheson, Christopher Knight, C. Thomas Howell, Kevin Federline, Dustin Diamond, Robert Romanus, Edwin Perez, and Bret Michaels. They give us tips on relationships, love and sex. I don’t know how much value these have, but it’s moderately interesting to hear the thoughts on the subjects.
American Pie Trivia runs eight minutes, 57 seconds and shows cast/crew attempts to answer questions about the series. Horton wanders the set and queries folks like Putch, Levy, Hall, Michaels, 1st AD Allan Harmon, unit photographer Chris Helcermanas-Benge, locations manager Marijke Richman, unit publicist Prudence Emery, locations PA Rob Millar, and actor Keana Iwaskow. It’s a mildly fun test.
Finally, we find American Pie-cons goes for six minutes, 52 seconds and discusses the film’s cameos. We hear from Hall, Hardesty, Putch, Knight, Diamond, Horton, Behrs, Perez, Matheson, Romanus, Federline, Howell, Michaels, associate producer Greg Holstein and actor Curtis Armstrong. We get reminders where we’ve seen these actors and hear their thoughts about the flick. It’s harmless but not very interesting.
Because the prior direct-to-video sequels were awful, I can’t say that American Pie Presents: The Book of Love disappoints. However, this doesn’t mean it’s any good. The movie lacks even rudimentary entertainment value and just throws out one lame gag after another. The Blu-ray provides good picture and audio along with some minor extras. I have no complaints about this release, but the movie itself is pretty awful.