If I learned anything from Red Clover, it’s that Billy Zane and leprechaun movies don’t mix – yet I still gave Scorned the good old college try. “But Matt, does that mean there are evil leprechauns in Scorned?!” No random commenter, even though a monster leprechaun might have presented SOMETHING interesting, but Scorned is written and directed by Leprechaun helmer Mark Jones – what could go wrong, right?! I know, I’m softening you up for the surprising fact that Scorned is quite possibly one of the most boring, uninspired, and poorly imagined thrillers of the year – and if you think I’ve already used the world “scorned” too many times, I dare you to drink every time Scorned references its own title – knowingly. Actually, I recommend you play that drinking game, because being blackout drunk may be the best way to watch Jones’ latest. Hell, the same rules might even help my own review.
*Does 6 shots*
Let’s do this.
Sadie (AnnaLynne McCord) and her boyfriend Kevin (Billy Zane) are about to spend an intimate vacation together where Sadie is hoping for a marriage proposal. Instead of the romantic gesture she’s wishing for, Sadie discovers a text message on Kevin’s phone that reveals he’s cheating. Drugging Kevin and tying him up, Sadie invites over his mistress and learns that it’s not just a random skank, but her best friend Jennifer (Viva Bianca). After subduing both Kevin and Jennifer, Sadie starts to let her unstable personality take over, threatening and harming those who scorned her. As the day unravels, we learn more and more about Sadie’s troubled past, and the violence becomes more believable.
Oh yeah, a convict escapes from a local prison while all this is going down – because the world works in mysterious, bafflingly coincidental ways as far as movie scripts are concerned.
Here’s the thing – I absolutely adored AnnaLynne McCord in Excision. Bringing a strong independence to another mentally unstable character, her performance as Pauline made me a firm believer in this 90210 star’s genre work. With McCord starring, I figured Scorned would at least have an enigmatic lead worth investing in – boy was I wrong.
Instead of another strong McCord performance, we get a psychotic Southerner with a hokey accent, insufferable sensibilities, and absolutely no chemistry with her lover Billy Zane. AnnaLynne McCord’s talents are horribly wasted trying to build some memorable villainess who ends up about as threatening as a Barbie doll – even after numerous characters wind up dead.
I’m not sure what I expected after Scorned‘s introduction outlined a texting conversation including the line “I miss your magic pussy.” I should have immediately stood up, thrown a brick through my television, and melted this disc down to make a decorative coaster for my mahogany end table. Instead I just hid under some blankets and braced for impact, drowning in a sea of “scorned” puns someone unfortunately thought to be hilariously clever. “You SCORNED me!” “Hell hath no fury like a woman SCORNED!” “SCORNED, SCORNED, SCORNED!” It was either self-gratifying references, awkward sex between Billy Zane and AnnaLynne, or hot women acting as naughty little puppies – escape was no option. Thankfully the soundtrack provided cheesy ripoffs of the most bubblegum teen pop tracks imaginable – sorry, did I say thankfully? I meant I’d rather stick pencils directly into my eardrums until – well, you get the point.
Scorned is the tamest of tame “torture porn” films, the flattest of thrillers, the corniest of dramas, and the most gag-worthy of romantics – coming together for an emotionless laugher of a watch. From poorly green screened car scenes to wildly out-of-touch conversations, we’re constantly wishing for these horrors to end, but Sadie keeps on cockily pressing on. On the flip side, we do learn some valuable lessons – all men are cheaters, getting away with murder as a child is easy, and staging a murder/rape scenario couldn’t be easier. Let the kids watch this one as soon as possible!
Scorned is so coldly disconnected, I think I finally have to blacklist Billy Zane. I know, it’s quite a gamble, but I haven’t been seeing eye to eye with “The Zane” recently, and it’s just a safe move. Can you blame Billy, though? Would you turn down a part that includes cavorting with a seductive AnnaLynne McCord, cursing the Gods of thunder and lightning while making sweet, sensual lake-love as their rumbles roar above? Damn you, sweet poon-tang, for clouding Billy’s vision, for now he must live with the consequences of being tied to a dangerously unwatchable mess lacking heart, coherence, intrigue, entertainment, and witty craftsmanship. Trust me, Sadie isn’t the only one being scorned…
Hell hath no fury like an audience scorned by a flat, unimaginative thriller - even if it stars the lovely AnnaLynne McCord.