Scary Movie V Jul 8, 2013 11:00:47 GMT -5
Post by StevePulaski on Jul 8, 2013 11:00:47 GMT -5
Ashley Tisdale is dragged around like a ragdoll by unseen, paranormal forces in Scary Movie V.
If there was ever a franchise to run out of steam before it even began and was already too long and overdone simply by having one film in its series, it's a franchise belonging to the modern parody genre. I've mentioned before that this is probably the worst genre in cinematic history, and few other genres have experienced such a rapid decline in quality since their birth. The parody genre is still relatively new in terms of feature-length films, with works such as Airplane! and The Kentucky Fried Movie only dating back to the late seventies.
Why did those films work so well and why does Scary Movie V fail so miserably? Because their prime goal wasn't to parody as many films as possible, but rather try and make fun of genre-conventions and certain obligatory things audiences have become accustomed to for so long. When watching a film like Airplane!, it almost makes you a more aware moviegoer because you're seeing how often these cliches are used and how laughable they actually are when put to a sillier context.
Scary Movie V has nothing - simply nothing - to work with, and for sixty-eight minutes does it lumber lifelessly to the next ridiculous and boring film parody before abandoning it almost entirely. There's so much going on, while simultaneously so little, that the film gets its story lost. It keeps changing tones, parody elements, themes, characters, and events to the point that this is nothing more than an overlong collage of cheaply redone scenes from other films of recent years.
The four main films the picture is predicated off of are Mama, Paranormal Activity, Black Swan, and Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Right off the bat, boy are we a dated party-guest trying desperately to be in-the-loop. Bloody Disgusting's website tells me Scary Movie V began shooting in September 2012, but the film managed to incorporate parodies of Mama and Evil Dead, which didn't hit theaters until the first and second quarters of 2013. This is obviously a move to try and remain current by the time the film comes out. However, because these movies weren't out at the time, the material used to parody them is thin and taken from the trailers, which isn't very convincing or fun. And even so, in three years, who will laugh at these references? More films along the lines of the aforementioned horror films will inevitably be released. Films like Airplane! never get old because their genre-cliches won't allow to them.
For the first time in the franchise's history, Anna Faris and Regina Hall do not appear at all, and the dubious honor of being lead characters in a redundant parody film are handed to Ashley Tisdale and Erica Ash. Other stars such as Lindsay Lohan, Charlie Sheen, Snoop Dogg, Mike Tyson, Jerry O'Connell, and Katt Williams star as predominately cameos in a film where itself is one big cameo in the field of cinema. Nobody looks to be trying here, and frankly, they don't need to. Pat Proft and David Zucker's screenplay leaves almost no imagination and in just over an hour's worth of time manages to make every joke go on for way too long and make one of the tedious comedy ventures so far this year.
While I haven't formally reviewed the previous films in the series, I have seen them all in either the theater or on DVD. The first was a nifty little feature, following in the footsteps of Scream to a reasonably charming effect. The second film is one of the few cases where the sequel is actually more impressive and funnier than the original film (the same thing happened with Scream 2, in my opinion). The third and forth were instantly forgettable endeavors capitalizing off of the goal to make these films more of a competition of references than actual films with plot that feature jabs at conventions and modern films. The series fell off when Shawn and Marlon Wayans were booted, resulting in David Zucker taking over from there. This is when the films became safe, woefully unremarkable, stale, and disposable.
The word for Scary Movie V is "lifeless," as everything from writing, acting, and even directing by Malcolm D. Lee seems to be nothing more than a pitiful cash-in on material gone dry. When a film dedicated to lampooning other films is trying this hard to make the audiences laugh, it doesn't seem to be any better, more sophisticated, or on any other level than the films being mocked.
Starring: Ashley Tisdale, Erica Ash, Simon Rex, Molly Shannon, Heather Locklear, J.P. Manoux, Jerry O'Connell, Charlie Sheen, Lindsay Lohan, Mike Tyson, Snoop Dogg, and Katt Williams. Directed by: Malcolm D. Lee.