If evidence was ever required that sequels are generally not a good idea, then An American Werewolf In Paris is it. Released in 1997, sixteen years after its predecessor, it fails in all the areas that made An American Werewolf in London a success. Where as An American Werewolf In London was darkly humorous, and the horror was tempered and suprising, An American Werewolf In Paris is shallow, predictable and bland.
Andy (Tom Everett Scott), Brad (Vince Vieluf) and Chris (Phil Buckman) are typical American jocks on a daredevil tour of Europe and we join them as they arrive in Paris. After scaling the Eiffel Tower so they can bungee jump from the viewing deck, they are interrupted by a young French woman (who is really French but with an American twang) who hurls herself off the tower right in front of them. Andy does the chivalrous thing and leaps after her, catches her, but wakes up in hospital after hitting his head on a girder as he bounced back (by now I was already cheering for the girder).
The three jocks track her down, but she gives them the brush off (smart girl) which makes Andy more determined to learn more about her. Everything about the two sidekick jocks is so annoying that I was just about pleading for the werewolf to hurry up and kill them. Their acting is wooden, their attempts at comedy so lame I swear a twelve year old could write better lines, and they are almost superfluous to the storyline - except for "Mr Beefcake" who spends much of the movie shirtless. These guys could have stepped right off the set of Welcome Back Kotter.
This review is becoming too painful. Basically, it transpires that the girl, Serafine (Julie Delpy), is a werewolf (surely you were expecting that?), she turns nasty and then bites Andy. Andy learns there are a lot more werewolves in Paris who have formed some sort of a collective, intent on attacking lots of other people (especially Americans). There is a lot of gore, many people running through (and under) Paris screaming, and blah, blah, blah. Honestly, it was so bad by this stage I was battling to even care what happened next.
An American Werewolf in London was original, amusing, and contained some genuinely scary moments. The special effects were very good (for the time), and featured some great, relaxed acting. An American Werewolf In Paris is neither funny, nor scary. It borders on 'Valley girl' humour (there is even an un-dead Valley girl in the film who is an awful character) and the actors are trying too hard to be funny. The effects are all CGI created and are neither convincing or scary.
There isn't much more to say. If you haven't seen either, then watch An American Werewolf In London. If you've already seen that, then save your money and give An American Werewolf In Paris a wide berth. It tries too hard to be like its forerunner, right down to the love twist - you know the one, where boy meets girl, girl is a werewolf, girl attacks boy, boy has to eat girl's heart to become human again...
I guess if you did want to watch this, you could at least play "Guess the next line" and for bonus points, see if you can predict the most obvious final moment in a horror movie in recent memory.
An American Werewolf in Paris is presented in an aspect ratio 1.78:1 and is anamorphically enhanced. It is a pretty good transfer, and the image is quite clear and sharp. There is some grain evident and it's quite noticeable at times. Colours are good and slightly oversaturated. Shadow detail is fair to poor, naturally at its worst in the tunnel and night scenes of which there are a few. Black levels are generally good with no evidence of noise.
The worst aspect of this transfer is the number of film artefacts. There are dirt and scratches evident, and several white flecks make infrequent but unwanted appearances. No layer change was noted.
I can say that I was happy when this movie finished. It is too corny to be clever, and too lame to be interesting. A decent rewrite, some sharper editing, and a few decent actors might have saved it. Even teenage horror/comedies (and this might just fall into that category) are usually better than An American Werewolf In Paris. Dogs humping legs (he's a werewolf - get it?), girls in graveyards being chased by werewolves claiming that it has cured their hiccups, and college jocks offering Scooby Snacks to marauding werewolves, (OK - I made the last one up but not the first two), is where I draw the line. Just pray there will be no An American Werewolf In Munich, or Moscow, or Barcelona, or Amsterdam, or...anywhere!