* Spoiler Free *
Scream (also informally known as Scream 5) is a 2022 American slasher film directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett and written by James Vanderbilt and Guy Busick. It is the fifth installment in the Scream film series and serves as a relaunch of the film series and a direct sequel to Scream 4 (2011).
It stars franchise newcomers Melissa Barrera, Mason Gooding, Jenna Ortega, and Jack Quaid, with Marley Shelton, Courteney Cox, David Arquette, Neve Campbell, and Roger L. Jackson reprising their roles from previous installments.
Scream is the first in the series not to be directed by Wes Craven, who died in 2015.
Twenty-five years after a streak of brutal murders shocked the quiet town of Woodsboro, a new killer has donned the Ghostface mask and begins targeting a group of teenagers to resurrect secrets from the town’s deadly past.
Ghostface is back to slash through an entire new generation with some franchise favourites coming along for the ride.
The Radio Silence team Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett and Chad Villella (E.P) continue the franchise’s tradition of commenting on the current horror genre, society as well as the culture of reboots, remakes and sequels.
This installment unlike most horror sequels doesn’t just rehash the same tropes of the established franchise but adds credibility to it, through the use of enhanced character development of legacy figures, well rounded new characters and new plot points or “rules” that furthers the narrative and enhances the mythology of the franchise.
Scream is extremely self referential of it’s own history and the wider horror universe.
Requel – A movie which revisits the subject matter of an earlier film but is not a remake or a linear continuation of its plot
The film seamlessly adds ‘Easter eggs’ regarding unanswered plot points and call backs to the previous movies without alienating franchise newcomers.
The new cast as a whole are a welcome addition to the franchise with stand out performances by Jasmin Savoy Brown (Mindy Meeks-Martin), Dylan Minnette (Wes Hicks), Melissa Barrera (Samantha “Sam” Carpenter) and Jenna Ortega (Tara Carpenter).
Without giving anything away the acting of the new cast constantly keeps you guessing until the final STAB!
The returning cast as usual give stellar performances and both enhance their individual scenes and the story as a whole. The arc of these characters from the original film to now comes full circle and their appearance goes far beyond fan service and turning up for a cheque (that happens a lot in horror sequels).
The filmmakers puts their own stamp on this film whilst staying true to the franchise and Craven’s directing style.
However as with most modern horror films the kills whilst being in the same vein seemed to be slightly more gory with increased lingering “in your face” camera shots than previous films. Certain kill shots seemed more suited in a “Friday” movie however this is more due to the narrative of the storyline.
In contrast to the blood and guts moments there were many deep emotional scenes that help the audience to connect with the new and existing characters which is getting increasingly rare in the modern horror genre.
The new instalment acknowledges Craven’s contributions to the franchise both on and off the camera.
The void he left behind will be extremely difficult to fill but Scream delivered in the promise that this film was ‘For Wes’.
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