Review: Scary Movie 4

April 23, 2006 at 3:24 AM (Movies)

The first Scary Movie was designed as a spoof of two of the most popular horror movies of the late 90s — Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer.  The sequel went for a more original story, while working in some spoofs of popular movies of its time.  While both these were strictly R-rated comedies, the third film, Scary Movie 3 was PG-13 rated, and pretty much different in tone from the first two.  Director David Zucker made it more a Hot Shots-style spoof film.  The plot lost all importance — the movie was simply a loosely connected set of scenes parodying other popular movies.  Still, I actually thought the third movie was the best of the series (a big factor being Charlie Sheen’s performance), and therefore was pretty excited when I heard that Scary Movie 4 was going into production, with the same crew as Part 3.  The teaser poster (which implied spoofs of Saw, The Grudge, The Village, War of the Worlds and King Kong) was great, the trailer further increased expectations, and the later poster art (which had three Saw-style severed fingers forming the numeral four) led me to believe that this sequel was going to be better than its predecessor.

An attempt to describe the story of Scary Movie 4 (which is virtually non-existent — even more so than Part 3!) would be as follows: Cindy Campbell (Anna Faris) takes up a job as a nurse for an elderly woman, and is attracted to next-door neighbour Tom Ryan (Craig Bierko).  Soon alien tr-iPods start attacking humanity, and Cindy realises that entering a secluded village might hold the key to saving Earth (it’s pretty much an excuse, really!).

Unfortunately, I was disappointed after seeing the movie.  I wouldn’t say the movie is a total waste of time, because there were certainly some funny and creative bits, but this time, there seemed to be a larger percentage of jokes that failed to have impact.  Maybe I wasn’t in the mood to appreciate the jokes, or maybe I was expecting too much — but on the whole, this seemed a lot duller than Part 3.  The positives here though, were the well-done recreations of the scenes from the movies being spoofed, and Anna Faris’s and Craig Bierko’s performances.  Some of the visual effects also seemed pretty good, especially considering they must have been done on a much lower budget than the blockbuster they were modelled after!

Still, I’d rate this a 6/10 overall.

Finally, a question — what happened to the spoof of King Kong that was promised by the teaser poster?

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