SCARY MOVIE 2
Director: Keenen Ivory Wayans
Cast: Marlon Wayans, Shawn Wayans, Anna Faris, Regina Hall, James DeBello, Chris Elliot
MPAA Rating: (for strong sexual and gross humor, graphic language and some drug content)
Running Time: 1:23
Release Date: 7/4/01
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Review by Mark Dujsik
Scary Movie was a strange freak of movie nature. By all accounts, it should have been horrible, but I laughed. Its entire existence relied on humor drawn from bodily functions and fluids, but I still laughed. It spoofed a movie that was originally intended to be a satire, but I laughed even more. It was definitely an odd day for me, to say the least. Scary Movie 2 is the expected and inevitable sequel to a movie that, in its ad campaign, promised no sequels. Of course, we all know how much we can trust movie ad campaigns. Its structure is essentially the sameóput a bunch of pieces of other movies together and make fun of them and in between throw in some toilet and/or sex humoróbut somewhere director Keenen Ivory Wayans and his troupe of six other screenwriters forgot an important element to comedy. It has to be funny.
Thatís not to say I didnít laugh during Scary Movie 2. The entire pre-credit sequence brings back that hit-and-miss quality of the first, where the hits are funny enough to outweigh the misses. The sequence spoofs The Exorcist quite well, and even has James Woods in it. The majority of the funny parts here rely on urination and vomiting (just as the creepy parts of The Exorcist relied on the same), but I wonít hold that fact against it, because it works. Woods is quite funny in his all too brief cameo, even when one of the major jokes predictably puts him on a toilet. Alas, the rest of the movie falls dead-flat. There are definitely the sex and toilet jokes and it spoofs just about every recent popular movie under the sun, but that joyous do-anything-for-a-laugh mentality of the first is missing.
Does anyone need a plot summary for a movie like this? Essentially the set-up places all the characters from the first movie in a haunted house. Why? Actually, now that I think about it, Iím not actually sure why. When I say that all of the characters from the first movie are here, I do mean even the ones who died in the first. There could have been an opportunity for a joke there, but the seven credited screenwriters either could not come up with a funny reasoning or they just figured no one would remember or care. Either of those possibilities does not speak well of seven credited screenwriters.
The movies parodied here range from The Haunting to Mission: Impossible 2; House on Haunted Hill to Charlieís Angels; Hannibal to Titanic; Hollow Man to Save the Last Dance. Thereís even some What Lies Beneath, Titanic, Dude, Whereís My Car?, and Twister thrown in for good measure. If that list seems disjointed, donít worry, it is, and the movie proves it. This sequel indicates that Scary Movie is intended as a franchise, and to forget that it was started to parody horror movies in the second installment does not say much for its future success. In forgetting the inspiration of their series, the creators of Scary Movie 2 have forgotten one crucial fact about the horror genreófor every Scream 2 there are twenty Blair Witch 2s.
Copyright © 2001 by Mark Dujsik. All rights reserved.