Sunday, 17 April 2011

Scream 4 - spoiler alert

I always maintain that I am not a huge fan of the horror genre but in reality that is a lie as what I should say is I am not a big fan of modern horror - the Hostel films and overly graphically violent films such as I Spit On Your Grave do not interest me in the slightest.

If am going to be scared in the cinema I want it to be as a result of jumps, thrills and scary ass children - graphic violence neither scares nor entertains me.

The announcement of another Scream movie caught my interest as I absolutely loved the trilogy but ten years is a long time between films so it was with nervous anticipation off we set to see Scream 4.

PLOT: After the two false openings Scream 4 finally gets under way. Celebrity Victim Sidney (Neve Campbell) arrives back in Woodsboro ten years after the third film and low and behold she isn’t back in town long enough to sign copies of her new self help book when the killings start up all over again. We are introduced to her cousin Jill (Emma Roberts) and a new generation of tweeting teens who are all completely expendable. Dewey has lost his limp but kept his moustache and is now the town sheriff. Dewey is in charge of protecting Sidney, the teens and the town therefore everyone naturally dies. There is blood shed, there are new rules, Gail is still a bitch, there is some more blood shed and the killer comes back for one last scare. END PLOT

I have neither the talent nor the inclination to discuss the plot of Scream 4 without spoiling too much but I gave a spoiler warning in the title of my post and I am giving you another warning - I will give stuff away.

The plot of Scream 4 is standard fare with the teens getting picked off one by one until Dewey and Gail are rendered unconscious and Sidney kills the ghost faced killer. What always makes the scream movies interesting is that they always have at least one handy movie buff around to remind us of the rules - in this case we are introduced to the rules of the reboot in typical Scream-esq fashion. This was my favourite scene in the entire film.

I really like the fact that the characters are self aware and casually throw around the “meta” phrase. The only show I can think of which forces at least one meta episode upon the fans a season is Supernatural and every year without fail this episode comes across as smug, self satisfying and never fails too piss me off. Scream 4 handles this aspect very well.

After the teens are all disposed of in various bloody ways the killers are finally revealed and I really liked the twist that the geek and the victim counterparts of the original Scream became the psychos in Scream 4.

The new cast members were your typical mixed bunch with some familiar faces and the others no doubt from teen drama shows that I have never watched. They were all fine in roles that really required nothing other than being hip, cool/geeky and looking wide eyed in their dying moments.

The old cast slipped into familiar roles with ease. This isn’t particularly a compliment as they hadn’t changed at all since Scream 3. The only thing that had changed is that they are ten years older - Gail is still a bitch, Dewey is still slightly retarded and Sidney is still as bland as ever.

The one thing that concerned me going into Scream4 was the violence. The first three Screams had their fair share of blood and gore but for me it was bearable. I was worried that this instalment would go down the road of more recent horrors and become overly bloody with the killings becoming completely over the top and unrealistic.

The violence and gore remained within the usual Scream standard with the only gross out moment being a brief glimpse of a large intestine on the duvet of the recently slashed to bits big chested blond whose name I cannot remember. It was startling for a second then the camera panned around the room to show the blood splattered walls and through my shock I couldn’t help but thinking that was an awesome shot.

The big disappointed in Scream 4 was that Sidney survived and this isn’t just because I lost the bet that she would die first. I assumed that they were rebooting the series with the new generation and the franchise would continue on without her - although I would never be happy with the never ending stream of new sequels.

The problem with Sidney’s inability to just die already is that there is nothing else they can do with the franchise. The Scream trilogy had been laid to rest a decade ago and resurrecting it without a major shake-up does make it seem rather pointless and I can't help think why did they even bother?

The only good thing about Sidney's survival was that it tied up the reboot theme within Scream4 with a good “don’t ever fuck with the original” line which I did enjoy but I can't help but wonder did they reboot the series just to get that one line in!

Scream4 is aware of the formula of slasher films and has this amazing ability to follow it without deviation whilst giving the impression that it is completely original. It gets an 7/10 as it was great fun to watch but enough is enough - there is absolutely nowhere for these characters to go as we are now all but one step away from Scream: In Space.


  1. Scream In Space, if they are going to go full meta its more or less required! I mean Jason and Pinhead already did it! I'll probably pick it up on video mainly because I never had a fondness for the original films but it sounds like this has some strong moments.

  2. It does have some strong moments, good little set pieces and is enjoyable enough but the movie just seemed a little pointless as it offered nothing new.

    If anything it just made me feel nostalgic for the original Scream

  3. I think all sequels lose it. I mean I am yet to see one after the first that holds your interest. Whether it is Friday the 13th, Poltergeist, Evil Dead and so on.

  4. You are absolutely the end it all seemed a bit pointless and offered nothing new. But I did enjoy it surprisingly enough and laughed all the way through it at the puns and horor movie references. The best line is as you say 'don't fuck with an original' and to me that sums up Scream 4. Ulitmately that one line sums up the why bother of making a fourth instalment of a franchise that should have been put to bed long ago. It is a great line but to make a whole movie to put it into...nah..that is just dumb!!

  5. As long as its not in space, I'll continue to watch the series. I enjoyed this film alot better than Scream 3 and the main reason was Kevin Williamson. It got back to its root where it picks on the formula of the horror genre and good snappy dialogue which was lacking in the last film . Also, the opening was done very well with the two false openings. It set the tone for the film. It's not up there with the first two film, but it still is a fun film that I can't wait to get on Blu-Ray.

  6. I liked the conversation in the first false opening about the current trend of gorno horror movies as I agreed with it!

    We definitely don't need another Scream movie but if they make it I will be there to see it just out of morbid curiosity - especially if it is in space!

    I haven't decided about getting the dvd although I probably will just for completeness

  7. wew.. good post.. allow me to read it