I’m a big horror fan, but as far as slasher movies go, I prefer the Nightmare on Elm street series or Friday the 13th over the Scream movies. However, the first Scream was an enjoyable and fresh spin on the genre, and while I didn’t really enjoy Scream 2 for some reason, I thought Scream 3 was a good ending to the “trilogy” (as if Hollywood could really keep that promise, right?). Since it had been so long since the last movie, I figured Hollywood may have decided to keep it as a trilogy. After all, there have been many times when I really wished someone would make another Back to the Future movie (Or at least a novel spin-off or something. C’mon people.), but I knew that if they did, it would just ruin the series and be worse. But this is horror we’re talking about, not Sci-Fi, and if Hollywood can keep cranking out new Friday the 13th spinoffs and awful remakes, then why not another Scream movie? Thus, I was very curious about where they were going to go with this new movie and really wanted to see it.
I just came away from the movie a couple hours ago, and it was quite enjoyable, and exceeded my expectations. Sidney Prescott (Neve Cambell) comes back to Woodsboro to promote a new self-help book just when new murders start taking place. Dewey and Gale Weathers live in Woodsboro and have been married for ten years since the last movie. But there is a new cast of characters for the killer to deal with, including Sidney’s young cousin, as well as some standard horror movie geeks to take the place of Randy in the previous films. The killings are enjoyable and suspenseful, (I wouldn’t say “frightening” being the desensitized horror fan I am, but your opinion may differ), and the dialogue is decent, with plenty of wittiness about horror and its trends, although I feel that, at least in the first half of the film, Sidney and Dewey (and to a lesser extent, Gale) get too little airtime, with the new kids taking their place. I know they need new faces, but let’s face it, Sidney is the main character, and I would have liked to see more of her personal emotional reactions to the fact that there is yet another killer stalking her and everyone in town. I also would have liked to see more possible hints and discussions of the suspects along with more of Sid’s family history, to keep us guessing. You’d expect the characters to at least engage in discussions about the possible suspects and motives, but you don’t get it. Instead, it seems like things just happen. This is a minor complaint, and my only real problem with the movie.
The conclusion more than makes up for these minor inadequacies. Starting at a Stab movie party where the killer attacks Gale, we get a fast paced, action packed 45 minutes or so (It seemed like a long conclusion, but I wasn’t checking the time) of a conclusion. Unlike some people, I didn’t think this was overdrawn or long, but genuinely entertaining. The revealing of the killer’s identity is genuinely surprising, although the killer in question is not particularly menacing (I‘ll say no more, at the risk of giving a spoiler). All in all, I’d say this is worth seeing in the theater, and if you are a Scream fan, you will probably love it.