So, apparently spoof films are still being made. There was a huge surge of them in the early to mid 2000s and this was sadly a case of quantity over quality. The Scary Movie franchise lampooned horror films of the late 90s and on and after five installments, they haven’t exactly gotten better, in fact they’ve gotten worse. Scary Movie 5 is the latest and hopefully, the last piece of dreck.
The film starts off spoofing Paranormal Activity and maintains this direction all throughout. Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan play an overtly sexually couple who encounter spiritual disturbances. Similar spookiness plagues a young couple (Ashley Tisdale and Simon Rex) who have recently adopted Sheen’s abandoned children. Their new home is outfitted with security cameras and demonic forces soon wreak havoc on the family.
Scary Movie 5 might be the worst one yet. Honestly, after 3, you would have thought the filmmakers learned the lesson of “less is more” but sadly, they did not. Scary Movie 5 is nothing but a desperate attempt of a studio trying to squeeze more money out of a seemingly dead franchise. The last Scary Movie came out in 2006. That’s seven years in which the studio had time to create and develop fresh and original material. They didn’t quite reach that goal and Scary Movie 5 was made, sucking the money, time and braincells out of movie theater audiences everywhere.
The highlight of this train wreck of a movie is the beginning. In the opening, Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan play exaggerated versions of themselves. They engage in sexual hijinks, and when I say “hijinks”, I mean “hijinks”. There is ridiculous music, clever camerawork and even circus clowns.
The performances by Ashley Tisdale and Simon Rex while not Oscar-worthy, they try their best. Teenage audiences will probably eat them up and rightfully so. They’re both good-looking, goofy and desperate to make people laugh. It’s nice that Rex and Sheen have returned for Scary Movie 5. To keep the continuity going within the franchise was smart and the return of these two is a pleasant turn of events.
As with all the Scary Movies, the films parodied are Paranormal Activity, Black Swan, Mama, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Sinister, Inception (with a brilliant Leonardo DiCaprio impersonator), Evil Dead, The Cabin in the Woods, Insidious, The Help, the Tyler Perry character Madea and the book Fifty Shades of Grey. The films and entities spoofed in Scary Movie 5 aren’t all horror-based and this is interesting since the previous entries were more fully horror-infused. The filmmakers wanted to diversify, it seems.
Snoop Dogg also has a pretty prominent role and can you guess what most of his jokes revolve around? Yep, you guessed it… marijuana. I mean, that’s a given when you put Snoop Dogg in anything, cinematic or reality. Katt Williams also has a fun scene as a paranormal “expert”, pretty funny stuff. Mike Tyson also has a pointless role in the film.
The Evil Dead parody was actually not as bad as one might think. It’s actually better than the recent remake of the horror classic. This is one of the few parodies in Scary Movie 5 that actually works. The Black Swan material with a comedically-empty Molly Shannon will manage to make you cringe rather than chuckle and that’s really unfortunate.
There are few parodies these days that manage to get audiences rolling with laughter. Success in the parody genre is very rare, and foolish filmmakers, like those behind Scary Movie 5, don’t seem to realize this. They keep churning out worthless junk that has little comedic appeal and awkward jokes that crash and burn. Unfortunately, parodies in this vein will continue to be made when fun and original parodies like Airplane! and The Naked Gun reign supreme in the minds and hearts of conscientious filmgoers.
Blu-ray Bonus Features
Sadly, the bonus features for Scary Movie 5 are slim pickings. There are just some deleted and extended scenes.