Scary Movie 4: Uncut & Unsanitized Edition
The Scary Movie films have never been known for their narrative qualities and this fourth episode is no exception. For completeness’ sake: everything revolves around an alien race that apparently has nothing better to do than exterminating the entire population of Earth. As we all know, the storyline is nothing more than an adhesive between the many gags, spoofs and stupid jokes that characterize this movie. The main targets this time are The Grudge, The Village and Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi epic War of the Worlds. But Saw, Brokeback Mountain and Million Dollar Baby don’t walk away unscathed.
Sound and Vision:
Scary Movie 4 was the first film in the series that was shot in high definition, which explains the generally very good image quality. In some parts, however (notably in the beginning of the movie), some minor grain can be seen, but it’s nothing serious. Job well done.
In the few action sequences of the movie, the use of surround sound is properly executed. Speech is also very clear. Now if only the actors would have had something interesting to say…
-Commentary from director David Zucker, producer Robert Weiss and writer Craig Mazin (censored and uncensored)
-The visual effects of Scary Movie 4
-The YoungBloodz featurette
-The man behind the laugh, David Zucker featurette
-Zany, spoof humour, Zucker style featurette
-Deleted scenes with optional commentary
-The ‘Scary’ truth: interview with the creators of the film
-Improvisation by Craig Bierko
First of all, it’s laudable Buena Vista has crammed this many extras on one DVD. Though the featurettes (‘Rappers…actors’ and ‘The YoungBloodz’ that tell us something about the many cameos in Scary Movie 4 and ‘The man behind the laugh, David Zucker’ and ‘Zany, spoof humour, Zucker style’ that -obviously- talk about David Zucker) aren’t that long (2 to 4 minutes each), they’re worth watching. The interview with Zucker and the two other writers is certainly interesting and entertaining, even though they all think their movie is utterly hilarious, which it isn’t by a long shot. The bloopers are plain boring and the deleted scenes show us whey they’ve been deleted in the first place.
We all know Scary Movie isn’t exactly made for a critical audience, but with Scary Movie 4, David Zucker really has hit rock bottom. The often witty and original jokes from the first two movies (that were written and directed by the Wayans brothers) have been dropped in favour of overzealous farting, people running against doors/poles/whatever and half-baked sexual innuendo. The truckload of B-list actors and celebrities can’t save this flick either. The distinct lack of talent of Anna Farris (who we all remember from the first three Scary Movies and her role in the magnificent Lost In Translation, where she was just blown away by Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson) is nothing new, but the fact that respected actors such as Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs) have lowered themselves to play in this crap, is saddening. For those of you who still care: we get to see cameos from Dr. Phill, Carmen Electra (whose biggest achievements are starring in Baywatch and standing on the cover of Playboy) and basketball star Shaquille O’Neill.
So, don’t expect to have a good time with this one. Though, admittedly, the Saw-like scene with Shaq and the spoof of Tom Cruise’s apperance in the Oprah Winfrey Show (you know, the one where crazy Tom jumped on the sofa like an ADD suffering guinea pig, shouting just how much he loved Katie Holmes) are funny, most of the time you’ll just be bored with the film. Or angry by the fact you just wasted some valuable time of your life.