4/10 Upon re-watching all four previous “Scream” films leading up to the moronically titled “Scream” (as opposed to “Scream 5”), I appreciated how they were meta before meta was even really a thing in mainstream films and how the early films revitalized the slasher genre that became so popular in the 1980s with the “Friday the 13th” and “A Nightmare on Elm Street” series. With an obscene number of sequels that had diminishing returns into terms of profit and audience interest, it was the original “Scream” that shot a much needed boost of adrenaline into a dying genre. The problem with the latest movie is that despite 11 years passing since “Scream 4” and two new co-directors following Wes Craven’s death a few years ago, this movie doesn’t offer anything new. All of the “Scream” movies feature a group of friends that begins dying off one at a time with the remaining survivors scrambling to figure out who the killer is or killers are. There is always one film buff character who explains the rules of surviving horror films and who the killer most likely is or isn’t. The latest movie uses that exact same plot as the other four did and only really updates the horror film references and adds some woke political correctness. I did appreciate using the legacy characters of Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), Gale Weathers (Courtney Cox) and Dewey Riley (David Arquette) and having their roles feel natural to the story, instead of forced in or reduced to cameos. The violence and gore also earns its R rating, instead of trying to soften the brutality to earn a PG-13 rating like some R rated franchises have done (“Die Hard” comes to mind). The cast is attractive and the pacing works well so while much of the movie is well made, the story just copies previous installments without bringing anything new and exciting to the table. It is especially disappointing considering having 11 years to come up with something more inventive and some fresh blood behind the camera. This movie is exactly what you would expect it to be, but that’s not good enough when we’ve had such fantastic and inspired horror films within the past five years or so. The horror films references in this movie are lightyears ahead of this so by bringing up those films, you only remind the audience how superior they are to what they are watching. Maintaining the status quo but updating the references and adding PC nonsense highlights how this franchise has turned into the very thing it used to playfully comment on/mock; a horror franchise that just repeats itself and churns out sequel after sequel with a formulaic plot and diminishing returns. While the horror genre, like the superhero genre, has proven to be pandemic proof for the most part (there are exceptions) in terms of making a killing at the box office, “Scream” might be making money, but creatively has gone bankrupt.

#EpicGale / #WeathersTheStorm / #ChopDewey / #MildThings / #KruegerTown / #ABabeInTheWoodsboro

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s