Scary Movie 5 has zero laughs. None. Nothing in this funny movie is funny. Not the spoofs. Not the slapstick. Not the sight gags. Absolutely nothing. It makes Bucky Larson look like a stunning achivement in film as an art form. It's 85 minutes long and feels like several cruel, depressing, banal lifetimes. I pulled out my cell phone several times in the theater to try and find solace in the Twitter hashtag #DontGoRawIfShe.
It sucks, because I'm a Scary Movie apologist. I used to ride or die for that franchise, dog! The first, released 13 years ago, holds so many romantic memories of nostalgia for me; the balls scene, the picture of the small penis scene, Carmen Electra getting her breast implant stabbed scene -- what a wonderful time to be alive!
The sequel, at that time in my life, was like The Godfather II. In earnest, Chris Elliot's boil-faced weirdo with a baby hand is not only one of the greatest comedic performances of the 21st century, but a benchmark moment for mankind. Scary Movie 3 had Leslie Nielsen and Ja Rule sharing scenes together. That's historic. That should be in the Smithsonian. OK, so Scary Movie 4 was pretty bad, but at least it got Dr. Phil his SAG card.
Scary Movie 5 is one of the worst movies I've ever seen. That's not hyperbole. It's atrocious and a disgrace to our country. Lowbrow comedy is cool -- everyone has laughed at some point in their life at someone getting kicked in the balls or you know, poop. This movie ain't got no brow. It's brow-less. The culture it was made for is non-existent. Maybe newborn babies who have not yet developed cognitive abilities or the recently deceased would enjoy it, and that's a strong maybe.
Here are some thoughts on a movie that made me long for Adam Sandler:
- I want to die. I want to have an aneurysm in this theater and be reincarnated in a world where this movie doesn't exist.
- I feel so bad for the father and son to my right, who are watching this movie together, silently, not even laughing at Lindsay Lohan's blowjob joke. The dad could have a heart attack on the way out and his son's last memory would be them seeing this movie.
- Why did I choose to see this over that Jackie Robinson movie? Should I call my therapist?
- The most linear spoof of Scary Movie is Mama. The Jessica Chastain/creepy child horror movie grossed a suprising $70 million at the domestic box office. It was released 75 days prior to Scary Movie. The first trailer, released in December, has no creepy girls, no Chastain black wig and scenes that weren't in the movie or drastically modified. According to IMDB, reshoots of the movie took place betwen February 18 and March 1 of this year. WTF does that suggest? 60 percent of the story is about Mama. The climax is about Mama. Was the original movie so shitty that they had to completely reshape the busted-ass narrative in two weeks of filming? How could it possibly be shittier than this?
- Additionally, there's a really drawn-out gag with Bow Wow, that girl from Modern Family and that girl from 30 Rock that spoofs Evil Dead, a film released seven days prior to Scary Movie... How can you assume people have seen that movie for such a long scene?
- As a result of the reshoots, there are embarasing scenes where the sound and actor's dialogue aren't synched properly or the sound is dubbed and totally different than than what is coming out of the actor's mouth. The editing is jarring and abrupt in a crystal-meth, attention-defecit disorder haze. The film feels totally rushed, as if Dimension wanted to keep that April 12th release date no matter what kind of soul-crushing, call-your-family-and-tell-them-you-love-them gruel.
-After seeing Molly Shannon's beautiful arc on HBO's now cancelled Enlightened, I felt a genuine sadness seeing her here. You're better than this, Molly! Call Mike White!
- Simon Rex is a funny. You probably know him only for being an MTV VJ or in Scary Movie 3. But his insane, cocaine-fueled hip-hop alter ego of Dirt Nasty is not only a decent parody/satization, but dude has got bars! He's also pretty big on Vine, an app that is currently destorying my life. His six second videos, where he tries out bad pick-up lines, fights with his gay twin brother Steven or chills with Andy Milionakis, are inherently more funny than ANYTHING in Scary Movie. His role is to solely fall from shit or have shit fall on him. That's it.
- For some inexpeclicable reason, Black Swan, a movie released two-and-a-half-years ago is spoofed hard. How many children saw a Darren Aronofsky film about ballet?
-In an attempt to shed that Disney girl image, Ashley Tisdale should have called Harmony Korine instead and got a spot in Spring Breakers
- Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer, who wrote the first film, went on to evolve spoof films into a disgusting cesspool, churning out abominations like Date Movie, Epic Movie, Meet The Spartans, Diaster Movie and Vampires Suck. Suprisingly, they weren't invovled with here, but they set the dangerous precedent of taking whatever bullshit that pop culture spews up and simply showing it in a movie -- maybe with a fart or dick joke as the cherry on top.
Scary Movie 5 is written by David Zucker and Pat Proft -- the virtuosos of the genre, handling everything from Airplane to The Naked Gun to Hot Shots. It's amazing that two guys who have been responsible for some of the biggest, most well-respected laughs went the Friedberg/Seltzer route. Borrowing exact scenes from the Paranormal Activity movies isn't funny. A Honey Boo Boo dream sequence isn't funny. A guy that looks and sounds like Leonardo DiCaprio isn't funny. I was quite suprised there wasn't an extended sequence involving "Gangnam Style." In this age, when memes are born on Monday and die on Friday, the shelf life for lampoon is truncated. This movie acknowledges that "yes, this exisited in the public's psyche for a fleeting second and here it is, now in a movie." That's not humor or spoof or whatever -- it's pointing something out.
- There's a montage of mechanical POOL CLEANERS partying. POOL CLEANERS!!! Is there no just God? Is there a God? What is our purpose on this Earth?
- The last movie I walked out of was Good Luck Chuck, starring America's sweetheart Dane Cook. I was tempted here, to just walk silently to my car, have a good, hard look at myself in the rearview mirror, maybe cry and wonder why I spent money for this mashochistic experience. I didn't. I'm a better person for it. I'm a survivor.
Scary Movie 5 bombed, considering the last film opened to $40 million and this one didn't even hit $15 million. What's to blame? The franchise is exhausted, squeezing out every penny in Police Academy fashion? It's been seven years since the last one? No big stars? No Anna Faris? Better options at the theater? The TV spots weren't convincing? The weather is nice?
I don't know. I'd like to think that it was because people of all ages, races, genders, creeds and ethnicties recognized that paying $8-12 to make yourself feel like shit can be accomplished in other ways (drugs, Big Macs) and more importantly, it's just not worth it. I wish I was one of those people.