Scream 4 (starring Neve Campbell)
Sidney Prescott returns to her hometown of Woodsboro on the ten year anniversary of the original Woodsboro murders, a massacre that became a trendy sensation due to reporter Gale Weather’s books which subsequently brought about a movie series called STAB. A homecoming to promote her new book starts the cycle anew, as Ghostface re-emerges to kill yet again.
I’ll never forget going to see the original SCREAM with my crew back in ninety-six. I’ve always been a fan of Horror but I really dig the whole comedy mixed with brutality vibe that these films give off. Add to that how blown away I was with the ending of the first film; two killers baby, what a concept! There aren’t many times (especially nowadays) that I’m thrown for a loop at the movies and the feeling I had when I left that theatre wouldn’t come again until THE SIXTH SENSE and hadn’t come since THE USUAL SUSPECTS (and as much as I loved KISS THE GIRLS, the two killer thing had already been done and didn’t phase me at that point). This series certainly had potential from day one and though this installment doesn’t carry the weight of the original (an impossible feat no matter how you slice it) it still measured up to be a pretty solid sequel.
The SCREAM series is known for its opening scenes so right then and there you need to hook the audience and this one certainly measured up. The false trailers for STAB six and seven were a hoot and made for an impressive start. The film carried itself well with the just the right tone as well as the right amount of murder, mayhem and laughs to cut the tension. The writing here was witty enough by today’s slasher standards with numerous references to the old school stuff. They don’t play around as much with the rules here as they did in the past, I mean yes, they’re mentioned and often joked about but they’re used more for humour here than they are for a survival guide. I do like how they stayed true to the R rating and all the fixings that come with it, call me crazy but PG-13 Horror just doesn’t feel right to me so that’s another area where the SCREAM franchise scores points.
When it comes right down to storyline I’ll admit that we have seen this picture before. Yes, it’s cool to see Sidney, Dewie and Gale re-team to kick some ass ten years later but you still pretty much know where this is going from act one. The rest of the crew are solid and being a HEROES fan I dug seeing Hayden Panetierre as well as Anthony Anderson and a couple brief cameos from Anna Paquin and Kristen Bell. Neve Campbell must have been stoked for this film, I mean honestly, what’s she done of note outside of this franchise other than THE CRAFT and WILD THINGS (God I love that movie)? She still looks good don’t get me wrong and I’m not saying she can’t act because she can. It’s just that she hasn’t really been on the radar lately. Hopefully this will change that for her.
SCREAM 4 was by far the best of the sequels for me. I loved the first one, the second one had the coolest opening scene by far and the third was alright but I’m a big fan of Lance Henrikson so his involvement certainly helped. I didn’t mind how things turned out in the end; I guess it was predictable and it wasn’t. I understand where they were going but I definitely think they could have tweaked it a bit more and/or played with it just a little longer for the ultimate BANG. That said, as sequels go, Wes Craven did alright for a fourth installment. I dug FAST AND THE FURIOUS 4 as well SAW 4 but there aren’t many other fourth sequels to choose from lately (I’m not banking on PIRATES 4 being anything to write home to mom about) and in all honesty that’s a good thing. I don’t know how stoked I’d be for a part five but this one was a definitely a worthy entry.