[Review] Scary Movie 5 (2013) by Bede Jermyn

scary_movie_fiveEven though my podcast co-host Super Marcey recently wrote an article wondering why the SCARY MOVIE franchise even exists (which you can read right here), I have to admit, shamefully I might add, that I actually *cough* don’t mind the series *cough*. Yes, I know that is truly terrible of me and I can understand why everyone hates them but the films are a guilty pleasure for me. I think the 1st and still the best film is, in my opinion, was the last truly good film in the spoof genre before the quality started to decline in the past decade and while 2-4 were all a mixed bag they still had some moments in them that did make me laugh (yeah I know, I know. I’m terrible). However funnily enough, I wasn’t really looking forward to it at all. All the trailers that I saw from it made it look like it was going to really terrible. So having the actual film myself, you’re all probably wondering what did I think of it. The answer is simple: meh.

The film’s plot (yes, it does have one as a matter of fact) is about a married couple named Dan (Simon Rex) & Jody (Ashley Tisdale) who decide to adopt Dan’s brother Charlie Sheen’s (Charlie Sheen) 3 kids after they we’re recently found in a feral state at a creepy cabin in the woods following Charlie’s mysterious death while making a sex tape with a demo-ahh, I mean Lindsay Lohan (Lindsay Lohan). When Dan, Jody and the kids move into a new house that has video cameras everywhere, some creepy stuff start to happening and they believe it might be the cause of the kid’s imaginary friend ‘Mama’. What follows next are scenes that spoof the films MAMA (obviously), the PARANORMAL ACTIVITY series, BLACK SWAN, RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES (I’m pretty sure this wasn’t a horror film). INCEPTION (I’m pretty sure this wasn’t a horror film as well), 50 SHADES OF GREY (again not a horror but why are they spoofing a book?!), the EVIL DEAD remake and blah, blah, blah.

The best thing I can say about SCARY MOVIE 5 is that is definitely wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be but that’s not really saying much. I’m sure they’ll a lot of people out there who will think that it is terrible but for me personally I thought it was just pretty meh. The film suffers from the same kind of problems that affecting a lot of spoof films as of late by resorting to low brow, gross out, slapstick humour instead of giving us clever and witty jokes/parodies about horror films. Now have nothing against low brow humour (when it’s done well it can be quite funny) but in this film it came off rather stupid, repetitive and lazy. Which is shame cause you would think that one of the Godfathers of the spoof comedy genre David Zucker (who directed the previous two sequels but only co-wrote/produced this one) would have come up with something better. Taking over Zucker in the director’s chair for this installment, director Malcolm D. Lee (who made the underrated comedies UNDERCOVER BROTHER and ROLL BOUNCE) tries his best with the material that he is give but sadly due to the film’s weak script he wasn’t able to make it as funny as it could have been (although to be fair he does have his moments). What also annoyed me about the film were the pointless send-ups from films that have nothing to do with the horror genre. There’s an entire sub-plot that’s spoofs RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES that doesn’t really add nothing to the film and also one scene that sends-up INCEPTION that was pretty stupid. But the worst one of all is the spoof of the book 50 SHADES OF GREY which I found really unfunny and unnecessary. Plus most of the cast are wasted, particularly the supporting/cameo roles (Heather Locklear, Jerry O’Connell, Kate Wash, Mike Tyson, Usher and Molly Shannon in particular whose roles I felt were really pointless).


However despite some of my problems with the film, I would be lying if I did say that there were couple of times during the course of it that it did give me a chuckle. There were some jokes that were so stupid that they actually did make me laugh (I know, I know but what can I say, I’m only human) but there were a couple of funny moments during the film that I actually thought were witty and clever. Sure these moments were few and far between but when they worked, they worked. Also there were a couple of members of the cast I thought did alright: Ashley Tisdale was okay as Jody and you can definitely tell that she is having a good time playing this part. Simon Rex was quite likable and as well as had pretty good comedic timing as Dan. I like how he gave it his all when to his performance. Also performance that stood out was Lidia Porto, who plays Dan & Jody’s housekeeper Maria. Like Rex, she also went all out when it came to her role and she brought some film’s most humorous moments.

Overall while SCARY MOVIE 5 does contain a few laughs (definitely more so than any of the so-called *spoof* films of Aaron Seltzer & Jason Friedberg combined) but unfortunately most of the jokes where more miss than hit. It’s definitely the worst one of the series so far. If you hated the other films in the series, you’ll most likely hate this one. Personally I don’t hate it myself but it’s definitely still not a good film.

My rating:

Review written by Bede Jermyn


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