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Overall Rating

Awesome: 0%
Worth A Look: 25.71%
Pretty Bad: 30%
Total Crap: 7.14%

7 reviews, 28 user ratings

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Scary Movie 4
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by brianorndorf

"Not classy, but it gets the job done"
4 stars

“Scary Movie 4” might fail the test for high class entertainment, but it has reliability in its stupidity, and free from the clutches of the Wayans Brothers, some of it is pretty hilarious. Like the last installment, the jokes aren’t always successful, and director David Zucker seems bent on having his whole cast get smacked on the head. Still, “Scary 4” is a pleasant, well-oiled slapfest, and I have yet to meet the person who doesn’t love a Charlie Sheen Viagra joke.

Given the job to take care of an old mute woman, Cindy Campbell (Anna Faris) finds there’s a little ghostly kid haunting the house, leaving mysterious clues behind. Living next door is Tom Ryan (Craig Bierko), a shipyard crane operator who is stuck taking care of his kids for the weekend – the same weekend aliens attack. Teaming up to find the source of this madness, Cindy and Tom encounter grudges, villages, million dollar babies, and a couple of gay cowboys as they trek across the countryside.

Ever since director David Zucker (“Airplane!”) took over the “Scary Movie” franchise from the Wayans Brothers, the films have been improved greatly. While these films aren’t exactly rocket science, they have a simplistic formula that defies true criticism and drills into the primal need to chortle at someone getting conked on the head with a random object. Like the third installment, Zucker is barely concerned with such cinema staples as consistency and restraint; “Scary 4” is another bullet train to laughs, and it succeeds more than it fails, which is about as good as it gets in the parody genre.

If “Scary 3” was showing signs of fatigue looking for spoofs of horror films, this latest installment calls off the search entirely. “The Grudge” is basically the only scary movie to be thoroughly raked over the coals, with “Saw” coming in a distant second. It’s tough not to notice that these films are essentially already parodies of their genre, but that’s just stinkin’ thinkin’. Zucker and his team of screenwriters simply want to slap these movies around: pitting Dr. Phil and Shaq against each other in a familiar bathroom set, watching scribbled blood-soaked clues on a wall form a helpful Yahoo map for Cindy, observing Charlie Sheen trying to commit apartment high-rise suicide after spending the night with three playmates, and having Cindy’s friend Brenda (Regina Hall) make out with the iconic tricycle-riding puppet from “Saw.”

The other half of the movie is devoted to a lengthy “War of the Worlds” recreation, and this is the material that scores the most chuckles. Escaping the towering tri-pods (that erupt from the ground in a huge iPod case), Bierko does a mighty fine Tom Cruise impression (even covering the actor’s wild Oprah appearance for the finale), and “Worlds” hands Zucker more opportunities to locate scenes to make fun of, including a fantastic running gag that emphasizes just how bad a father Tom truly is.

The random grab-bag of jokes eventually spills over to “Brokeback Mountain,” “The Village,” and most curiously, “Million Dollar Baby” (remember when Hilary Swank broke her neck? Imagine the whole arena having the same accident). Truthfully, there’s nothing really satiric about the humor or the targets; they’re just bookmarks that allow Zucker to work in ways for his cast to endure more cranial trauma or, in the case of Carmen Electra, complete bowel humiliation. Between these lowbrow, easy lay sequences are some truly funny parodies (Zucker gets good mileage out of “The Village”) and throwaway gags, almost always belonging to Faris. This is her fourth “Scary” outing, and she’s been the consistent highlight of the franchise. Without her bubble gum attitude and complete conviction with all this nonsense, these films would be lost.

Nothing here is red carpet, admirable entertainment, but compared to last February’s bottom-feeding knockoff, “Date Movie,” the self-assured “Scary Movie 4” looks like “The 400 Blows.”

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originally posted: 04/14/06 14:53:33
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User Comments

3/18/16 Charles Tatum Meh. 3 stars
4/20/13 How did this shit get made? Seriously. 1 stars
9/06/08 Connie Lingus This movie really smelled alot 1 stars
3/25/08 Isaac M. Baranoff Please stop making these movies. 2 stars
8/11/07 fools♫gold Quite clever and funny (and even underrated) compared to the previous 3. 4 stars
2/28/07 Beau Could have been a lot better! could have exaggerated spoofs more. Im a fan of anna faris 3 stars
2/18/07 David Pollastrini so bad it's scary 2 stars
10/31/06 Jacko wacko shit storyline,but good 4 stars
10/24/06 Phil S.M. 1 = good, 2 = crap, 3 = O.K., 4 = rubbish, rubbish, rubbish! 1 stars
10/06/06 Kara Typical Scary movie theme, great 1 liners 2 stars
8/28/06 action movie fan continuation of horror movie spoof==znay and loud.spoof micheal jackson too 3 stars
8/18/06 Mike I think I'm giving up on the Scary Movies unless the Wayans Bros. come back. 2 stars
7/04/06 Cheryl Mayfield Seein Dr. Phil cut his foot off & hearin Carmen Electra take a monstr dump make it worth it 4 stars
5/29/06 saiid not bad 2 stars
5/17/06 Sheen Krist It was better then Scary Movie 3 but still wasn't all that great. 3 stars
5/10/06 y2mckay The same old shit - funny in spurts, but completely disposable humor. 3 stars
5/09/06 Tranquil Worst of the series. No laughs to be found. Good recreation of spoofed movies visually. 2 stars
5/04/06 Littlepurch Was expecting it to be crap but was pleasantly surprised. Regina Hall was best, as usual. 4 stars
4/30/06 jonathan_223 Worse than even the second installment. 2 stars
4/27/06 Mase Regina Hall is the secret weapon of the series, she may be worth the price of admittance. 3 stars
4/21/06 Becky Bierko is the "oh I know that guy from where?" but he's great! Pretty damn funny flick 4 stars
4/18/06 sean Hey, Mel, be fair, it wasn't Damon Wayans, it was Keenan Ivory 2 stars
4/18/06 KingNeutron Some LOL moments, but it fell short of my expectations. Nothing in teh credits 2 wait 4. 3 stars
4/16/06 Ole Man Bourbon Some funny jokes. Funny scene with Charlie Sheen and a bottle of vodka. 4 stars
4/15/06 Eevil Wolfie It's ok i guess. Could have been better.. 3 stars
4/15/06 Duffyboy666 Packed with jokes. Some funny, some stupid but it makes you laugh and thats the main thing! 1 stars
4/13/06 Sean Crap 1 stars
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  14-Apr-2006 (PG-13)
  DVD: 15-Aug-2006



[trailer] Trailer

Directed by
  David Zucker

Written by
  Craig Mazin
  Pat Proft

  Anna Faris
  Regina Hall
  Craig Bierko
  Leslie Nielsen
  Carmen Electra
  Shaquille O'Neal

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