Scary Movie 2

For anybody who ever though about what could top a penis impaling the head of Sean Wayans in Scary Movie, rest assured that there is a joke in Scary Movie 2 (along the same line) that does top it. The first Scary Movie was a send-up mainly of the Scream movies. The sequel begins by mimicking the structure of The Haunting, then throws in everything from The Exorcist, Titanic, What Lies Beneath, Charlie's Angels, and many others. The movie is parody after parody, and the problem is that it will not make sense after a couple years. Sure people will remember the aforementioned movies. Poking fun at lesser-known movies like Save the Last Dance and Dude, Where's My Car? and Nike commercials may seem funny now, but who knows what kind of shelf life these movies will have?

Scary Movie 2 (written by Alison Fouse, Greg Grabianski, Dave Polsky, Michael Anthony Snowden, Craig, Sean, and Marlon Wayans, whew!) begins with an amusing Exorcist parody starring James Woods (Any Given Sunday, Recess: School's Out) who came in after Marlon Brando was deemed too sick for the role. It quickly takes things down to sewer level, where jokes stay for the majority of the movie. The first couple minutes have nothing to do with the rest of the movie, but they are they anyway. The movie itself deals with a group of people who get to spend the night at an ominous mansion. The Professor (Tim Curry, Charlie's Angels, Rugrats in Paris), a lecherous teacher, has sinister designs on these college student. Innocent Cindy (Anna Faris, Scary Movie, Lover's Lane), sexually ambiguous Ray (Sean Wayans, Scary Movie, New Blood), pothead Shorty (Marlon Wayans, Dungeons & Dragons, Requiem For a Dream), and some other stock characters are the unlucky participants in the Professor's experiment.

Of course, there is a poltergeist in the house, and of course, things go awry, leading to all sorts of hijinks. The butler (Chris Elliot, Snow Day, The Nutty Professor II) enjoys touching all the food he prepares. The writers and director Keenan Ivory Wayans (Scary Movie, Most Wanted) are ruthlessly efficient at moving quickly from one joke to the next, leaving little time for anything else. When they run out of something, they throw in a sex gag or a fart joke to spice things up. Movies like this that exist simply as parodies do not worry about conventions like plot or character development. In some cases, bad acting is what the movie calls for. The only thing that matters is that people laugh at the jokes.

People will laugh, but not because the jokes are funny. Movies nowadays go for the baser elements of comedy. Each new release needs to top the last movie. The two movies in this (undoubtedly still growing) franchise are very outrageous, which is what the Wayans clan wants. Scary Movie 2 again pushes the envelope of the R rating. Filmmakers need to learn that gross does not necessarily equal funny. There are funny parts of Scary Movie 2, but the gutter and pot jokes far outnumber anything genuinely funny.

Haro Rates It: Not Bad.
1 hour, 22 minutes, Rated R for sexual content, drugs, and language.

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