Scary Movie 3
By Nell Minow,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
This PG-13 has R-rated stuff; too raunchy for tweens.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Some racial humor. There are jokes about drinking, smoking, drugs, sex, race, drunk driving, pedophile priests, gang shootings, barfing, menstruation, testicular cancer, bestiality, and people with disabilities.
Positive Role Models
Always with comic intent, the film mocks stereotyping even as it perpetuates it: black characters are armed and dangerous; women are dumb; Asians are bad drivers; priests are pedophiles.
Violence & Scariness
Slapstick throughout. Characters (including one hapless little boy who is continuously battered ) are decapitated, hit by cars and falling objects, knocked out, crash through windows, shot at, kicked in the groin, and attacked by corpses and zombies. There are fist fights, brawls, gun battles, knifings, bloody bodies, appalling seizures, and chainsaws.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Very explicit for a PG-13. No actual sexual activity other than some slobbery kisses and shots of dogs copulating, but innuendo along with sexual language, jokes, and leering are frequent. Opening sequence pays "homage" to the voluptuous breasts of Pamela Sue Anderson and Jenny McCarthy. There is implied off-camera molestation, a comic sequence of someone having sexual intercourse with a chair, and references to menstruation, oral sex, masturbation, and Internet sex tapes.
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Very strong language for a PG-13. Primary obscenities are "s--t," "ass," "a--hole," "bitch," "damn," "f--k," "ho," and one use of the "N" word. Lots of on-camera "comic" vulgarity (vomiting, snot, poop, peeing) and sexual jokes (i.e., "Your period starts in 3...2..." and "It's so hard..."). Schoolchildren listen to a sexual discussion.
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Products & Purchases
The Coors Light twins appear. Yahtzee, Blockbuster, Webster's Dictionary.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Two dogs are shown smoking marijuana. Lots of beer drinking and some drunkenness at parties and a rap concert. Characters smoke, one very heavily. Reference to a birth in which the mother was drunk and using crystal meth.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that, as usual, the MPAA gives a PG-13 rating to material in a comedy that would get an R-rating in a drama. The movie is heavy on exaggerated cartoon violence (decapitations, knifings, comically brutal fights, zombies, and phony scares). The film's comic sensibilities rely on potty humor (pooping, peeing, farting, vomiting, snot), sexual innuendo and suggestive visuals (dogs copulating, large jiggling breasts, bare butts), and low-brow parody (racial stereotypes, a pedophile priest, people with disabilities). There are fewer obscenities than in the earlier films, but still plenty of "s--t," "ass," "bitch," and an occasional "f--k." Drinking, drug use, and smoking are occasional, intended as over-the-top humor.
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Where to Watch
Based on 18 parent reviews
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AWESOME MOVIE U NEED TO WATCH!!!
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What's the Story?
In this third installment of the parody series, an alien invasion connected to a videotape and some crop circles open the door for a series of riffs on a couple of dozen movies, including Signs, The Ring, 8 Mile, and The Matrix. Some of the jokes come from juxtaposing two pop culture references, as when American Idol's Simon Cowell critiques an 8 Mile-inspired rap performance, and Pamela Anderson finds a videotape inspired by The Ring even scarier than the infamous video featuring her private moments with then-husband Tommy Lee. More of the humor comes from gross physical harm or from wildly inappropriate comments or behavior in front of children. One child is hit by a car, repeatedly beaten and injured, molested by a priest, and told about his mother's substance abuse during pregnancy. A dead body is subjected to violent attempts to bring it back to life, resulting in the severing of its limbs. The rest is that good old comedy staple -- stupidity -- as when a group of heavily armed gangstas show up to fight the aliens but then start arguing over who smudged whose sneakers and gun each other down instead.
Is It Any Good?
There are some very funny moments, and Queen Latifah lights up her scenes as a psychic, with the able assistance of Eddie Griffin as her husband. George Carlin is a pleasure in a Matrix-inspired role. Regina Hall brings some snap to the best-friend-destined-to-die-early-on role. But this is a movie that will primarily appeal to those who can get excited about seeing performers like Ja Rule, Ghostface Killah, and Method Man acting silly, especially those who are young enough to get a kick out of the inherent subversiveness of any satire aimed at popular media, without caring too much whether any of the targets are actually hit.
The first two Scary Movies, written and directed by the Wayans brothers, were R-rated, cheerfully raunchy, and cheekily politically incorrect parodies of popular movies, including Scream and its sequels. SCARY MOVIE 3 is rated PG-13 and the Wayanses have been replaced by David Zucker, director of both wildly funny comedy classics (Ruthless People and Airplane!) and painfully un-funny flops (My Boss's Daughter). This movie is somewhere in the middle, not as good as The Naked Gun series but better than Baseketball.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about parody and satire. Does this movie do a good job of lampooning its subjects?
The first two Scary Movie films were rated R, while this one is PG-13. Why do you think the moviemakers decided to make the material less graphic this time?
Who is the intended audience of this movie? Is it still relevant, or are the references too dated?
- In theaters: October 24, 2003
- On DVD or streaming: May 11, 2004
- Cast: Anna Faris, Charlie Sheen, Simon Rex
- Director: David Zucker
- Studio: Dimension
- Genre: Comedy
- Run time: 90 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG-13
- MPAA explanation: pervasive crude and sexual humor, language, comic violence and drug references
- Last updated: January 29, 2023
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