‘Scary Movie 3’ turns 20: it still kills | ET REALITY


Just before Halloween 20 years ago, the horror parody “Scary Movie” released its third installment, a truly unserious parody of “The Ring,” “8 Mile,” M. Night Shyamalan and pop culture in general. I died laughing watching it when he was a preteen; The point was that he was immature and tasteless. Two decades and a college degree later, I’m afraid saying, “Scary Movie 3” still kills me.

If the third part had any chance of surviving after the studio fired the Wayans brothers from their own franchise, according to Marlon Wayans, needed a deus ex machina a la “Airplane!” and “The Naked Gun.” So, they hired exactly that: veteran spoof director David Zucker and his “Olivier” of the genre, as Roger Ebert called him, Leslie Nielsen. This inspired marriage between golden age parody of the ’80s and irreverent slapstick of the 2000s era gave the cult hit some cachet. It was also Hollywood’s last great love story with its silliest genre.

The farce follows journalist Cindy (Anna Faris), aspiring rapper George (Simon Rex), and George’s farmer brother Tom (Charlie Sheen) as they investigate a murder tape, mysterious crop circles, and an alien invasion. Regina Hall reprises her role as Cindy’s best friend Brenda, while Nielsen plays the Looney Tunes President of the United States. Queen Latifah slays as (sorry!) Aunt ShaNeequa, the know-it-all oracle, married to Eddie Griffin’s Orpheus.

And lampooning “The Matrix Reloaded,” comedian George Carlin appears as the Architect, who accidentally returned his son’s creepy video to Blockbuster instead of “Pootie Tang.” “We loved our daughter, but she was evil. She drove the horses crazy, she killed our puppies, she hid the remote control.” the architect explains. “My wife took her to the old family farm and drowned her in the well. I felt like a simple timeout would have been enough.”

Somewhere between pastiche and silliness, “Scary Movie 3” is more of a bricolage of breathless incongruities and fourth-wall winks; puns, jokes and references to the zeitgeist; Wacky gags and cool line readings, all executed with deadpan precision at a breakneck pace. Don’t worry if you don’t understand a joke… there’s a new one right behind it. Even with those nasty, disbursed jokes that you can’t make anymore, for better or worse (the michael jackson impersonator is still kind of fun), “Scary Movie 3” remains a fan favorite that influenced the humor of a generation.

a sheriff growing hat. Kevin Hart and Anthony Anderson paradoxes in the nature of a rat that turns into a mouse if it enters a house. “Oh, Yahtzee! Never mind its off-color shock value, its toilet humor or many, many kicks to the groin. The film is helped greatly by its subtle hilarity: the shovel cocked like a shotgun or the perfect delivery behind “Tom, I’ll need a ride home.” – throwaway scenes that make you laugh like you’re a kid again.

The best parodies turn out to be chests, or coffins in this case, for our collective obsessions. Enter: the obligatory celebrity cameo. Jenny McCarthy and Pamela Anderson’s schoolgirl versions stretch the dumb blonde gimmick to death. Fat Joe and Simon Cowell appear as themselves in a rap battle. Ja Rule plays a Secret Service agent for some reason. The members of Master P, Macy Gray and Wu-Tang arrive as backup against the aliens, but instead shoot each other. Part of the fun of film today is seeing what has or hasn’t changed in 20 years.

“Writing ‘Scary Movie 3’ was much more difficult than writing ‘Chernobyl,’” Emmy-winning screenwriter Craig Mazin he told British GQ last year. Mazin said that he, along with his co-writer Pat Proft, would count more than 70 script revisions thanks to the incessant demands of Miramax’s Bob Weinstein to turn the film into a raunchy sex comedy.

Even now, Mazin loves “Scary Movie 3,” as does Zucker, who considers it one of his three best films. Often asked if she could make his movies today, Zucker has a favorite line: “Sure, but no jokes.”

It’s hard to find a good parody these days. Some theories imply cultural and cinematographic changes, as if we were post-satire or post-genre. Franchises and tentpoles no longer even try to overcome accusations of Oscar bait, or they commit so strongly that it bounces off more than the car that went to outer space in “F9”.

As the decade progressed, no one was safe from the onslaught of parodies, mostly with the word “Movie” in the title (“Not Another Teen Movie,” “Date Movie,” “Disaster Movie,” ” Superhero Movie” and Alabama.). The joke became old and the parody soon became a nightmare.

It’s fitting, then, that the franchise that single-handedly revived the genre also dealt the final blow with “Scary Movie V” in 2013. Parody movies have been slowly dying since then and, surprisingly, “Scary Movie 3.” he could have been the killer all along.

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