The only scary part of “Scary Movie 5” is how terrifyingly awful it is.
“Scary Movie 5” stars Ashley Tisdale and Simon Rex as Jody and Dan Sanders, a young couple that takes in the children of Dan’s brother (Charlie Sheen) after his possessed partner (Lindsay Lohan) kills him.
The children are found feral in a cabin in the woods, and are only given over to their uncle when they agree to move into a house with security cameras.
Soon after their arrival, paranormal activity begins to plague the house. The strange goings-on are inescapable even at the Sanders’ jobs — Jody is a ballerina and Dan is a primate intelligence researcher.
To find and stop the source of the evil, they call in help from a psychic (Katt Williams) and a dream extractor (Ben Cornish).
The plots of “Paranormal Activity” and “Mama” comprise the main storyline, with bits of others such as “Black Swan,” “Evil Dead,” “Inception” and “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” mixed in.
As is the case with most parody movies (think “Epic Movie” or “Not another Teen Movie”), writers David Zucker and Pat Proft seem to think a reference to a popular film is enough to get the audience laughing.
The script is dull, the references outdated (for instance, the first “Paranormal Activity” came out six years ago) and to top it all off, the acting is atrocious.
Another problem for the movie is even though it includes big names, it hardly has an A-list cast of actors.
Sheen and Lohan are the high profile, but they are better known for tiger blood and arrest records than any acting prowess.
Other cameos come from celebrities like Snoop Dog, Mac Miller and Mike Tyson. Unsurprisingly, these cameos are more often painfully awkward than legitimately funny.
That really sets the tone for the whole movie — an 85-minute saga of excruciatingly bad attempts at humor.
The “Scary Movie” franchise has never been the height of quality cinema, but the early films were at least funny. This time, the original creators, the Wayans Brothers, nor original star Anna Farris return, and the change is obvious.
The script and story are simply not funny, and without talented actors to hold it up, the movie falls flat.
“Scary Movie 5” is being marketed as a reboot of the series, which accounts for the departure of Farris and any other original cast members.
The Weinstein Brothers seemed to hope that by producing and distributing the new film, they would be able to revive a financially successful series. But its near-universal flop with critics and disappointing weekend opening suggest that maybe, if audiences are lucky, “Scary Movie” will finally be put to rest for good.