Ashley Tisdale does her absolute best but even she can't save this film from mediocrity. In this fifth instalment, slapstick runs rather dry and many, many gags outstay their welcome. Hits like Inception, Black Swan and Mama are spoofed earning some healthy laughs but many dated cultural references and pop culture gags fall flat, this isn't as bad as the first two Scary Movie films but it's certainly one of the weakest, reaching to the bottom of the barrel in desperation.
Scary MoVie sees young parents Dan and Jody raise their adopted nieces who have a twisted spirit overlooking them. Jody begins to experience paranormal activity in their new home, and soon realises an evil dead demon is stalking them, Jody must now venture to the cabin in the woods to find the book of the dead and stop the deadly curse, whilst Dan focuses on his job at the Ape research facility. The problem here is too many big films are being spoofed, from Inception, Black Swan, Mama, Evil Dead, Paranormal Activity, Insidious, The Cabin In The Woods, even Tyler Perry's Madea and Fifty Shades Of Grey. Writers David Zucker and Pat Proft cram it all in, the film is bursting at its seams with a lot of bad jokes and a feeling of desperation. The scenes where Simon Rex falls over whilst trying to set up the cameras drove me mental as it wasn't funny, the fight between Dan and Rosa, and the repetition of the Cabin in the woods joke fizzled out quicker than you can say boring. The dancing Mama and the Ape's talking about Matt Damon really killed hope, there's so much that falls flat, the Fifty Shades Of Grey scene was pointless and the Inception scene really felt forced.
However, the whole Black Swan sequences work superbly, the Evil Dead book scene was hilarious and the opening with Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan ripping their personal lives maybe lousy but it works. Erica Ash is superb as Kendra, J.P. Manoux is very funny as Pierre the ballet teacher, and Molly Shannon reels out some big laughs as a broken, alcoholic smoking professional dancer, there are some great jokes here, Ashley Tisdale is great at slapstick and she echoes an Anna Faris in the making, although Faris cannot be beat when it comes to these films. The found footage aspects are decent, especially when exploring their new home, seeing Jody smack the baby into the door frame, setting its head on fire then blasting fire extinguishers reign madness, it's unapologetically poor humour but I chuckled.
Running in at under feature length, Scary Movie 5 feels long and exhausting, it tries to be something big but it really is just a squashed mixed bag labelled as a movie, and Director Malcolm D. Lee does nothing to polish or let alone add craft to this tiresome spoof.