I loved the first Scream film. I remember it fondly coming out when I was in the tail end of high school. Me and my friends saw multiple times and giggled each time seeing it. It’s follow ups weren’t even close to capturing the fun of the first, but included enough to make them entertaining, but not necessarily good. So, I went into Scream 4 expecting a movie on par with the second and third iterations and by the end, I was actually pleasantly surprised.
It’s been a decade in both the movie and since the last Scream and Sidney Prescott, the heroine of the first three, has moved on with her life no longer the victim, but instead preaching empowerment. When she returns to her home town though, this opens up all kinds of shenanigans and of course the return of Ghostface to hack and slash in new ways.
The first half of the movie is quite good with an opening that’s fantastic, sending up the fact this is the fourth film in the series and having some great commentary about sequels and modern horror movies and gore porn. The problem is, such a fantastic opening makes you expect the rest of the movie to hold that sort of cheeky/meta wink throughout. It holds up at times but quickly spirals into a ho-hum movie that instead of a new direction and a fresh start with a new generation, we’re left with the same old.
There’s a lot here that I like. It totally throws out the rule book for horror movies and sticks to these new rules. It really does update the horror film for the new technology savvy generation. Wouldn’t today’s victims be texting, checking in on foursquare and making Facebook statuses? The answer in this movie is yes and it plays off of that.
It’s hard to totally review the movie without blowing the great twists and giving away what I really liked. But, for the most part the villain is predictable, even though there’s so many red herrings that are attempted to be thrown out there.
Overall, the movie is entertaining and fun. It wasn’t a bad way to spend a Saturday night and the audience seemed to have some fun, though it was the most reserved audience I’ve seen a Scream movie with. I walked out having enjoyed myself, and you can do a lot worse. The movie derails towards the end, but the first three quarters hold up quite well.