Why though? Why? Wes Craven died in 2015, and the horror community was saddened. He was very old, so it wasn’t too shocking, but it still did come out of nowhere.
Craven had helped revitalized horror films multiple times in his career, which I don’t know if any other director can say about their films. He was one of the top masters of the genre. He directed each and every Scream movie, never letting anyone else touch his baby. I wonder if he regretted letting other people do Nightmare on Elm Streets. Or maybe he didn’t have enough power back then to keep the films going on his watch.
I personally 100% ignored the idea of the Scream TV show. Apparently it might have had three seasons? Cool, its not canon, I don’t care. It wasn’t made by Wes. So I also was EXTREMELY reluctant to care about the next film. Scream 5, or as they are calling it, Scream.
The directors of Scream (Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett) did Ready or Not a few years ago. Which was a horror film with comedic elements, which is what one could use to describe Scream. But Scream is also scary. Ready or Not disappointed me on many levels (although I know my opinion is not the majority there). I don’t know these guys. I don’t know if I should trust them.
But fuck it. I am not going to avoid it either. Let’s see how it was done. Will it be a tarnish, or a good movie, or even just a good sequel for Wes? Well…
Ten years ago or so, some people were killed in Woodsboro. It was due to a book release. And about 15 years before that is when the first Woodsboro killings too place. There were other killings too associated with them, at a nearby college, and of course, in Hollywood.
So…why would they happen, AGAIN, in Woodsboro? You know, with new teens.
Well, fuck it, I won’t tell you. Because honestly, I didn’t watch the trailer, I don’t know what elements are considered spoilers, so I will just say it will be explained. But let’s say it involves a Ghostface mask. Let’s say it involves the local community. Let’s say it involves those from the past and blame it on actions from the past.
Starring new teens (Jenna Ortega Mason Gooding, Mikey Madison, Sonia Ammar, Jasmin Savoy Brown, Dylan Minnette), old stars (Neve Campbell, David Arquette, Courtney Cox, Marley Shelton), and even some new adults but they at least used to be teens (Melissa Barrera,,Kyle Gallner, Chester Tam, Jack Quaid).
“Hey! I know them. They’re from the movie!”
Okay, to get the first part out of the way, I think Wes Craven would have approved of this sequel. It has a similar tone, similar reveal, similar meta knowledge taking the franchise in a slightly different direction. He would have probably scoffed over the tributes to himself in the movie (one of the characters is named Wes and a specific party) but that was clearly something there to benefit his family, friends, and fans.
I found myself multiple times, getting frustrated with characters, wondering why they would do a stupid action. You know, standard horror tropes. And then wondering why they don’t do X. And most of the time, the characters would end up actually doing the smarter thing, and feeling relieved. Most of the time when a character did a stupid action in my mind, it actually made more sense by the end because “oh, they were the killer, nevermind, their actions make sense now.”
I didn’t love the final reveal of the killer(s). I did go in with certain characters I was hoping would be the villain, so if it didn’t match my early on guess, that was my own disappointment, but doesn’t reflect the movie badly. Although, we do have a situation that when the reveal happens, at least one of the characters seemingly acts WAY more insane than they ever showed before, uncomfortably so. Like Matthew Lillard or Timothy Olyphant in the first two (oh spoilers for the first two). But maybe they did it as an homage. Fuck if I know, it can be hard to tell on Scream movies, where references are kind of the point.
I don’t know if the acting from some of our stars is as good as it had been. Yes, I am talking about Campbell and Cox. Arquette’s character was given a much bigger change, so he had more moments to shine and act great, but that is more of a script issue. Thankfully, the overall story is good enough for a horror film and the franchise that I can just let that go.
I enjoyed this sequel. Some of the kills were pretty gruesome. The inability for the ghostface to die early is ridiculous. But I thought the characters were fun, the deaths were fun, even when they pissed me off, and I can even see a future movie down the line.
Here is my final order: 1 > 4 > 5 > 2 > 3.