Monday, April 18, 2011

Scream 4 (2011)

"New Decade. New Rules."

Synopsis: Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), now the author of a self-help book, returns home to Woodsboro on the last stop of her book tour. There she reconnects with Sheriff Dewey (David Arquette) and Gale (Courteney Cox), who are now married, as well as her cousin Jill (Emma Roberts) and her Aunt Kate (Mary McDonnell). Unfortunately, Sidney's appearance also brings about the return of Ghostface, putting Sidney, Gale, and Dewey, along with Jill, her friends, and the whole town of Woodsboro in danger.

My Thoughts:  After my wife discovered the Scream 4 trailer while watching TV last week (probably during Dancing with the Stars), she ordered me to go with her to see it as soon as it came out. She had no idea it was even being made (she's not in the loop), so when she saw it she acted like a kid walking by a Baskin Robbins. What I'm saying is, I didn't have a chance. Although, I did man up and make her wait until Monday.

I'm not a Scream hater, like a lot of people. I really like the original. I liked it enough to be one of the many horror fans that dished out the cash to see the sequel. What, was it like 7 bucks back then? I can't remember. Anyway, I remembered it being a pretty disappointing and uninspired follow-up. Part 3 ...even more so. That doesn't leave a guy with much to look forward to when a Part 4 comes out from a franchise that's been dead for over a decade.

Before donating more money to the Wes Craven retirement fund, I decided to watch the original trilogy again, You know, revisit Woodsboro and see if I felt the same way about the series as I did 10 years ago. I originally intended to review each movie, but I think I'll put that on hold until they're finished with the series. I assume that'll be Scream 6, but who am I kidding?

One thing about Wes Craven, the guy's tough to figure out. When you sit down to watch a Wes Craven movie, you have no idea what you're gonna get. The guy will release a complete piece of garbage and follow it up with an absolute classic. I mean, he made "A Nightmare on Elm Street" right after "Invitation To Hell" and the first "Scream" came out after the horror/comedy disaster that was "Vampire in Brooklyn". Scream 4 is no classic, but anybody who has seen "My Soul To Take" knows actually what I'm talking about.

Let's face it, there's not much more you can do with this series. It's a part of pop culture that's so played out that it's turned most of it's fans into former fans. That's where I got to give Craven and writer Kevin Williamson tons of credit for picking a great young cast and breathing some new life into a once dead franchise.

Like I said, at this point there's not much you could do as far as the story goes. That's why giving the fans a fun fast-paced popcorn flick was the way to go. I thought, unlike in Parts 2 & 3, the new batch of characters mixed in really well with the series regulars. It had the right amount of red herrings to keep you guessing, some pretty good cameos and the usual goofy humor that you expect from a Scream movie. They even threw in some extra gore this time around, which never hurts.

My Rating: 7.5 / 10

A fresher movie for a stale franchise. I guess the extended vacation from the Scream series did Craven and Williamson some good. If you're a fan of the series, or even just the original, it's worth checking out.

"click here to see the trailer"

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