Monday, July 9, 2001 Volume 66, Issue 151


Wayans brothers' latest effort at satire turns out more fluffy than funny

Scary Movie 2
**Out of five stars
Rated: R for drug content, sexual references
Starring: Keenen Ivory Wayans, Tori Spelling
By Sally M. Hill

Daily Cougar Staff

Writing a review for a film like Scary Movie 2 seems rather futile. Everyone who liked the first will no doubt see the second, even if they hear it's not
as good.

Alas, Scary Movie 2 is not as good as last year's hit. The movie does have some big laughs and a few clever moments -- like references to the last
presidential election and Firestone tires -- but not enough to fill a whole movie. Director Keenen Ivory Wayans and his brothers, Marlon and Shawn,
should have stuck to the first film's tagline: No mercy. No shame. No sequel.

When you make more than $200 million, it must be hard to come up with original ideas. The Wayanses should have waited longer and come up with
more and better material. Scary Movie 2 is short, yet it's full of filler fluff. There's lots of running around aimlessly to kill time.

Linda R. Chen/Dimension Films

The Wayans brothers' second stab at horror-movie satire, Scary Movie 2, retains all the immaturity and gross-out humor of its predecessor -- but
forgets to add the humor.

Lamest of all is a five-minute scene in which the main characters perform outrageous basketball moves to really loud music. It's only when the guy in
the wheelchair starts to spin on his head that it gets nearly funny.

Though gags are thrown out at a rapid pace, only a few stick. The first movie was rude, crude, irreverent, sometimes satirical and consistently
hilarious. This time around, only the first three succeed.

Scary Movie 2 is more silliness than satire. Most of it is disgusting and offensive silliness, at that. As in the first movie, racism is rampant. Apparently,
this is acceptable because the film was written and directed by African-Americans.

Keenen and brothers recycle, rehash or continue some jokes from the original. Ray's (Shawn Wayans) sexuality is still the source of gags, as is
Shorty's (Marlon Wayans) continuous use of drugs. The power of male fluids is brought up again. So is the "Did you hear something?" line by a
distracted male driver.

Even though some characters died in the first movie, many are back in addition to Ray and Shorty. Once again, Anna Faris plays Cindy, the female
lead. Regina Hall, who was killed in a most amusing way the first time around, is back as Ray's girlfriend.

Joining them in an experiment put on by a mad scientist in a haunted house are Chris Masterson (Francis of television's Malcolm in the Middle), Tori
Spelling and Kathleen Robertson. Whereas the first movie spoofed teen slasher films like Scream and its innumerable sequels, this one focuses on
The House on Haunted Hill, Poltergeist and What Lies Beneath with little bits of Charlie's Angels and Mission: Impossible II thrown in.

The funniest part of the film is a takeoff of The Exorcist, but it has nothing to do with the unsatisfactory plot. James Woods, as the priest who takes
the possessed girl's taunts literally, is the most memorable character.

Chris Elliott, best remembered for his antics on David Letterman's show, also has his moments as a thoroughly creepy caretaker. Tim Curry's talent is
wasted in his role as the mad scientist, but he is still more interesting than the younger stars. None of the starlets stand out at all in the talent
department, but Masterson and Robertson are very good-looking.

According to Keenen Ivory Wayans, "What was fun about making this movie was the chance to go back and watch my favorite movies from growing
up that have influenced my life." Prospective moviegoers might take a cue from Wayans and re-watch their own favorite movies rather than plunking
down $8 for this one.

But if you go, go now while the crowds are still large. This is the type of movie that plays well to a big audience, but even watching the original Scary
Movie alone is funnier than seeing the sequel.

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