Movie Review: A Haunted House

haunted house

Stars: Marlon Wayans, Cedric the Entertainer, Essence Atkins, David Koechner, Nick Swardson

Rated R for for crude and sexual content, language and some drug use, Running time 86 minutes, Comedy/Parody

Compare to: The Scary Movie Franchise (1999-2006)

It almost seems stupid to review this movie at all. You’ve got to know what you’re getting into by now with a Wayans brother involved in a project and you haven’t been paying attention if you don’t know that parody movies are their niche. Not only that, you could go so far as to blame them for all the horrible parody movies that occasionally lurch their way into theaters every couple years.

You know what I’m talking about. The poster will always be a random assortment of characters from movies that often times have nothing to do with the genre they’re supposedly mocking. I happened to find this poster and chose it over the more common one of, you guessed it, all the characters standing next to each other.

Using the “found footage” motif, Keisha moves in with Malcolm and strange things start happening. Paranormal things. From there, a former inmate turned priest, two paranormal investigators, and a really gay psychic get involved as Paranormal Activity and The Devil Inside are parodied. Nice that they’re only sticking with a couple movies this time rather than eighteen.

If you know about the Wayan’s brothers movies, there’s really not too much to say. Jokes of the crudest sexual nature are explored, gay jokes and flatulence gags are run into the ground and straight into hell. Nothing is sacred nor off limits as every beginning scene is meant to set up what’s to become usually the nastiest thing you’ve never thought about, much less seen in an actual multimillion dollar film. It’s expected though isn’t it?

Marlon Wayans has been quoted as saying “It’s not exactly a parody” but rather a movie with funny characters doing the opposite of what typical white people do in similar horror films.”

I’m not sure that Wayans understands or has ever understood that Horror movies with white people doing stupid things aren’t really so much of a representation of how white people act in horrific supernatural scenarios as much as it is meant to move the plot along. But, if you take out Wayan’s mentality, he has even less of a movie than he already does.

Most of his jokes, much like in the original two Scary Movies, revolve around the most stereotypical ghetto “blackified” jokes. While a white woman would run, cry, and scream to get away from a killer, a black girl would closeline them, then punch the killer in the nuts and throw out a line like “Don’t touch my weave, BIATCH!”

It’s funnier to talk about with friends and make up on the spot than put two million dollars making it into a reality.

Oh, and then there’s Nick Swardson. The guy whose entire career has been made out of acting really gay. Not happy, of course, but homosexual. The stereotype is funny but wears off after the first seven jokes told in the first minute he opens the door. There’s also the neighborhood swingers whose constant attempts at having sex with the two protagonists are absolutely hilarious. I mean, really they’re just so funny that…that…

…I can’t do this anymore. I feel obligated to give this movie an F and nothing higher. I just don’t think I could live down giving it a D- because there’s absolutely nothing of value here. So here goes…

Grade: F


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