Facial Hair Friday/Lara’s Solo Review of Scream 4

27 May

RING RING (or, actually, some digital, funky ringtone called “Sonic”)

Me: Hello?

Ghostface: Hello.

Me: Who is this?

Ghostface: Who is this?

Me: I asked you first.

Ghostface: Do you like scary movies?

Me: Sure, they can be pretty okay sometimes.

Ghostface: What’s your favorite scary movie?

Me: Um… probably Scream.

Ghostface: Great.

Me: Why?

Ghostface: We can start the self-referencing straight off the bat.

Me: What?

Ghostface: I’m going to bat you in the face… with a knife!

Me: (DEAD).

And scene.

That was my roundabout and lazy way of introducing the fact that last week I saw the latest installment of one of my favorite movie series (as per usual, with the exception of the third), Scream 4. It’s been ten years since my first viewing of the Scream trilogy that initially scarred me (I was sleepless and vomitty for a week) but was later embraced in a somewhat twisted manner. I didn’t have much hope for the latest episode, seeing as it was made eleven years after the monstrosity that is Scream 3, but it is a Scream movie, and my first chance to see one in a theater. So I took it. And this is what I think.

Scream 4 is pretty awesome. I mean, it’s completely unwarranted and not nearly as frightening as the first two films, but it was really fun. It not only furthers the story of the first three, but serves as a sort of reboot of the original—replicating many of the kills and characters of Scream, yet setting them in the digital age. There were modern elements I wish they had done more with; streaming videos, tweeting, and facebooking were all referenced though not utilized, but issues such as internet phenomena and negligent fame were explored in a very fascinating way.

Jill (Emma Roberts) as Sidney’s cousin

The new cast juxtaposed with the old was ingenious. As opposed to the characters from the third film, who were killed off with no grief, the new Woodsboroites were compelling and clever—much of the time I wanted them to survive. This feeling would have been even further enhanced if the murders were drawn out longer, as they were in the first two installments. Tension isn’t really built because Ghostface simply pops out and stabs his newest victim, making it lethargic and lacking a single scene that could one day be iconic. The film relied much more on self-referencing humor than actual horror. Not that that’s necessarily a bad thing.

Of course there was some classicism in the fact that The Three (Courtney Cox, David Arquette, and Neve Campbell) all returned to be stalked as per usual. They were very much the same; Dewey (Arquette) still the bumbling and inept cop who keeps getting higher rankings despite his incapability to solve anything, Gail Weathers (Cox) remained persistent and bitchy, and Sidney Prescott (Campbell) was still… there…and inexplicably kicking ass. One thing that has changed, however, besides Gail learning modern media strategies from the new young journalists, and that is Dewey’s physicality. If you’ve watched the other movies you know that in the end of the first film he was stabbed in the spine, causing him to walk with a limp and his arm in a strange position, high by his side. In the third film (which my boyfriend and I re-watched a couple weeks ago) his limp has gone down significantly. In Scream 4 we were baffled to find the limp was almost completely gone! Maybe that’s why Dewey keeps being promoted, he’s not a great cop but he’s SUPERHUMAN.

FHF! It’s the reanimating, paranormal mustache that does the trick.

Okay. So I could say a lot more, but not without going into major spoilers. Suffice it to say I really liked Scream 4. It was much better closure than the 2000’s attempt at a last chapter. I hope Wes Craven leaves it at this, as I don’t really know what else could be done with the characters. I’m sure he won’t though. And I’ll likely go to the theater like a sucker, hoping for similar stabtastic glory. If you like the original Scream movies, I think you’ll really enjoy this re-boot. If you don’t, I’ll gut your bowels out.

Just kidding,

Lara

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One Response to “Facial Hair Friday/Lara’s Solo Review of Scream 4”

  1. carly cram June 8, 2011 at 11:48 am #

    I love that you went and saw it. I dont ever have any intention on seeing films like that, but after you review them it makes me want to. so good job you!

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