7:30 PM, 20th July, 2018
The cinematic theme of teens trying to lose their virginity has certainly come a long way, even just in my lifetime. (In my brief internet (re)search, I could not uncover any movies of the sub-genre pre-1970s). I remember not being allowed to watch Porky’s when I was a teen, and when watching it years later, I think my parents may have been inadvertently right – the sex stuff that they feared paled in comparison to the chauvinistic male fantasies. Then, about fifteen years later, American Pie was considered a step forward (more on that below).
And in 2018 we get Blockers, with a similar plot to American Pie except (a) the females wish to lose their virginity this time, not the males, (b) the movie is more focused on the parents trying to stop them, and (c) it is set over a much shorter time period.
And already, I feel like I am over-intellectualising a movie that is basically a bodily-functions gag-fest. Many of the biggest belly laughs I have had this year came from this movie. If a sex-positive comedy that features an ex-wrestler chugging beer through his anus sounds right up your alley (sorry), then Blockers is for you.
9:22 PM, 20th July, 2018
...and once you’ve consumed the 2018 version, let’s travel back in time to see American Pie, the 1999 take on “teenage losing-your-virginity pacts”. This one revolves around the boys, and the deadline, whilst still being prom night, is much further away than the girls had looming in Blockers.
Whilst American Pie lacks the sex-positivity and girl focus of the latest movie, it was still an advancement of the trope for its times. The females were mostly portrayed as characters that actually called all the shots, a large jump from the ‘80s versions of sex comedies (where they were tits and ass and not much else).
However, cultural analysis aside, this is also a reminiscent journey for Gen-Xers, back to the outrageous and beloved characters like Stifler and Jim’s Dad, as well as the iconic scenes like the one involving the titular piece of pastry. Yes, there’s still Nadia the exchange student and “one time at band camp” as male sexual fantasies, but it’s going to be interesting to see how cringe-worthy they are 19 years later. Enjoy this unique opportunity to compare and contrast this evening – or just have a laugh.