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Dimension Films presents
Scary Movie 3 (2003)

"Great trilogies come in threes."
- tagline

Review By: Rich Rosell  
Published: May 11, 2004

Stars: Anna Faris, Charlie Sheen, Simon Rex
Other Stars: Jeremy Piven, Drew Mikuska, Tim Stack, Leslie Nielsen, Eddie Griffin, Queen Latifah, Jenny McCarthy, Pamela Anderson, Simon Cowell, Denise Richards, Anthony Anderson, D.L. Hughley, George Carlin, Regina Hall, Darrell Hammond, Jianna Ballard, Marny Eng, Camryn Manheim, Fat Joe
Director: David Zucker

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for pervasive crude and sexual humor, language, comic violence, drug references
Run Time: 01h:24m:04s
Release Date: May 11, 2004
UPC: 786936237863
Genre: comedy


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B+ B+B+B B+

DVD Review

With this third installment of the low-brow parody/comedy, gone are the Wayans brothers and in as director is David Zucker, of Airplane! and Naked Gun fame. The degree of humor has been cropped down from an R rating to a more mass appeal PG-13, but it seemingly hasn't hurt the onslaught of bad jokes, clever parodies, and wacky visuals; like Zucker's earlier classic comedies, that type of juvenile nuttiness is what one has also come to expect from the Scary Movie franchise.

The parody targets this time around primarily consist of The Ring, The Matrix, Signs, and to some degree even Eminem's 8 Mile, with Anna Faris and perennial victim Regina Hall about all that remain of the previous two Scary Movie casts. Faris' Cindy Campbell is a television reporter sent to cover the story of the sudden appearance of numerous crop circles on the farm of Tom (Charlie Sheen), as in the M. Night Shyamalan thriller. She falls hard for Tom's white rapper brother George (Simon Rex), and in the process has to do battle with the creepy dead girl from The Ring while trying to protect her young nephew, Cody (Drew Mikuska), from becoming the next victim.

This may not be sophisticated filmmaking, but Faris continues to show herself as a vastly underrated comedic actor; she is just about perfect here doing her doe-eyed, spacy, deadpan schtick. Likewise with Charlie Sheen, who is equally effective doing moronic comedy with a properly stiff and serious delivery. There are plenty of cameos (Jenny McCarthy, Pamela Anderson, Simon Cowell, Denise Richards, Camryn Mannheim), and Airplane!/Naked Gun figurehead Leslie Nielsen appears in the second half as an expectedly absent-minded and bumbling President of the United States, who best gags are to be found on this disc's deleted scenes.

Is the film itself funny? Yes. This film tries really hard, and hits the mark just about every time. The setup of the plot is really inconsequential to the steady stream of gags that Zucker and head writers Craig Mazin and Pat Proft dole out. Some of the best ones were ruined by the theatrical trailer, but I laughed more often than I didn't, and some throwaway bits, like Darrell Hammond's creepy priest/babysitter is gloriously wicked. It may not be necessary to have seen Signs or The Ring to get all the laughs, but I have to think it certainly helps, especially considering the bulk of the film centers around direct parodies of those two films.

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: B+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: Dimension has issued Scary Movie 3 in a damn fine looking 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. Colors are bright, vivid and evenly rendered throughout, and black levels are deep and spot on. Image detail is crisp and well defined, though a bit of edge enhancement is evident in a few scenes, this one looks quite good.

Very, very nice.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
Dolby Digital
5.1
English, Frenchyes


Audio Transfer Review: Audio is provided in Dolby Digital 5.1 surround (both English and French). Rears don't get used extensively, but they do come to life on occasion, and the presentation across the front channels is particularly spacious and clean.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Full Motion menu with music
Scene Access with 18 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, Spanish with remote access
1 Other Trailer(s) featuring The Osbournes
9 Deleted Scenes
1 Alternate Endings
1 Documentaries
3 Featurette(s)
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extras Review: Things kick off with a full-length, scene-specific commentary track from director David Zucker, producers Robert K. Weiss, and writers Craig Mazin and Pat Proft. There's a lot of talking over each other, and the mood is light, but if you listen between the cracks you can pick up things like what they had to rewire and rewrite to get a PG-13 rating, which for some reason I always find fascinating.

The nine Deleted Scenes (27m:01s), available with an optional commentary, are really the jewel here, and include a hilarious alternate ending involving The Hulk and space aliens that was scrapped in favor of an ending that borrowed more directly from The Ring and Signs. This alternate is a stitch, and while relentlessly goofy, features some of Leslie Nielsen's best moments and a few assorted twists on other characters from the film.

Also included are a pair of extremely watchable making of featurettes: Making Scary Movie 3 (23m:21s) and the parody-of-the-parody Making Scary Move 3...For Real (04m:43s). Both shorts have the look and feel of a typical EPK, but the content is a step above the usual fluff. The Hulk vs Aliens: Behind the Scenes of the Alternate Ending (03m:56s) takes a quick look at the work that went into making the ending that was never used (but thankfully included here), and an Outtakes and Bloopers (03m:59s) reel is also provided, but is stunningly unfunny.

The disc is cut into 18 chapters, and features optional subtitles in English or Spanish.

Extras Grade: B+

 

Final Comments

The familiar formula here is to keep the dumb gags and parodies coming, and David Zucker has managed to cram in a boatload of laughs, despite the perceived limitations of a PG-13 rating. The inclusion of an equally funny and rather lengthy alternate ending sequence as part of the extras is almost like getting a second movie for the price.

Recommended.

 


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