ninth symphony films - movie reviews

SCARY MOVIE 3 (2003)

DIRECTOR  -  david zucker

RATED  -  pg-13

GENRE  -  comedy

LENGTH  -  90 minutes

RELEASED  -  24 october 2003

DISTRIBUTOR  -  miramax pictures

OFFICIAL SITE  -  scary movie 3

ESTIMATED BUDGET  -  $45,000,000
scary movie 3 - a shot from the film


buy the dvd from scary movie 3 at

buy the dvd from scary movie 3 at

the third installment of the horror spoof that stars a group of very dense teens.

anthony anderson's scenes were so popular in test screenings that extra material was written for him.


picture from scary movie 3

picture from scary movie 3

picture from scary movie 3


zero out of four possible stars

For rabid fans of horror films, the first Scary Movie was probably an enjoyable experience for those who spent their viewing time trying to calculate the number of "spoofed" movies included in the film. The second Movie was much of the same, except the jokes were much, much dumber (however hard that might be to believe). This third installment (the creators are already cooking up a fourth helping) doesn't even stick to "scary" films for its spoofs. Since when was The Matrix Reloaded a horror film? And how would 8 Mile qualify for that genre? Why call it Scary Movie at all if you're just going to spoof everything in existence? Why not call it Spoofy Movie?

Just because a bit of comedy is rather dumb doesn't mean it can't be knock-your-pants-off funny. In fact, basing the jokes in a film on bodily functions and blatant sexual innuendo will earn you a large share of the young, male, movie-going audience. But has the Scary Movie series reached a point where even that demographic won't stand for the stupidity put forth in this film? Perhaps it's a reach to assume that young boys could ever tire of boob and fart jokes, but from my perspective, the members of the audience who fit the targeted demographic for this film weren't cracking up as often as they should have been during my viewing of the film.

It takes a rather bad script and lacking creative team to allow Leslie Nielson to appear on screen with little comedic value added to the film. The director, David Zucker, who ironically and originally directed Nielson in 1980's Airplane (the grand-daddy of modern spoof movies), seems to have been in a career slump for two decades, as none of his films have been as hilarious as that first film.

And while most of the cameos in the film are mildly hit or miss (there is a plethora of rap stars doing time in this film, including Method Man and Master P, amongst others), the main characters don't really light up the screen all that well either. With such weak performances across the board, might the director be to blame? Though hands down, the funniest performance in the film belongs to Anthony Anderson. He plays the character Mekhi Phifer played in 8 Mile and over half the laughs in the film come from him, even though he's not the main character.

Anna Faris, who has played "Cindy" in each Scary film, again puts her acting talent to the test in the third film, this time appearing as a blond (she was a brunette in the first and second films) reporter who wishes to cover "hard-hitting" topics instead of brainless fluff. She wasn't funny in the first two films and she still hasn't learned how to deliver a joke for this film. Though her dramatic abilities might surface later in her career, she doesn't display any real talent in front of the camera. Unless you count her use of a highly annoying tone of voice as an attribute. And it's doubtful anyone with properly functioning ear-drums would do so.

Ironically, one of the funniest elements of this film was left on the cutting room floor even before the film's marketing push began. When the movie was still on the drawing table, the "working title" was Scary Movie 3: Episode I - Lord of the Brooms. Mimicking the dropping of the name "Jane Austen" from the front of 1998's Mafia (the original title was, "Jane Austen's Mafia"), Scary Movie 3 lost one of its funniest elements before anybody even got to see the film.

If the point of the film was to spoof every recent popular film in existence, why not let the title stay? It's hard to recommend this film even to the film's intended audience, but if you're willing to drop the cash (on a matinee, please!) or if you're a large fan of dumb jokes (extra dumb jokes), enjoying this film on the big screen might not be out of the realm of possibility.

But it would probably behoove all potential viewers to consider this film a better video rental than a big-screen experience. Some of the jokes in this films are funny, but none of them are worth paying an exorbitant amount for a ticket. While Scary Movie 2 exists as quite a detestable piece of celluloid (seven screenwriters couldn't get the simple, simple, simple formula right on that one even though six writers had to be employed on the first), the two credited screenwriters on Scary Movie 3 haven't struck gold either.

While the first Movie had the stamp of "original" placed upon it by critics and many ticket-buying fans, this second sequel is just a rehashing of something that never should have been duplicated. Another reason audience members might also balk at the ticket price is the length of the film. The running time might be listed as ninety minutes, but without the credits, the film barely hits eighty.

Review by Kelsey Wyatt.

content 2000 - 2005 - ninth symphony films - photographs dimension films 2003
home | archive | ratings | links | about | contact