Scream (5) - A Spoiler Filled Review - NO GIVEAWAY - NO CLUE WORD - Don’t Read If You Haven’t Watched & Don’t Want To Know!
Let me say this one more time, for those sitting in the back, THERE ARE GOING TO BE SPOILERS! I don't know how else we can make this clear - this article is JUST a review - FULL OF SPOILERS - There is NO HIDDEN GIVEAWAY - NO CODE WORD - NO BONUS FOR READING. But one more time for good measure - SPOILER ALERT!
OK with that out there way it's time to begin. Let me start by saying I generally LOVE the Scream franchise, yes even Scream 4 that people love to shove in a closet and pretend it doesn't exist - I love that one too.
With that being said, this one is not going to become a rewatch favorite. In fact I am more likely to pretty much pretend this one doesn't exist. (I'm very good at that lol).
I'm going to break it down into sections and try not to go into TOO much detail - but I have a LOT of feelings about this movie - and most of them not good.
1. The name! Everyone that knows the franchise is going to call it Scream 5. So why reboot to Scream? They themselves poke fun of the fact that they have done it IN the movie with references to a new "Stab" movie that should have just been called "Stab 8". This isn't a reboot of any kinds. It is LITERALLY a continuation of the original 4 movies (except for the fact that apparently after Scream 3 Sydney married McDreamy and had kids with him - that was never mentioned in 4 - but OK we will go with it) - but now when you search things it's just confusing. FAIL!
2. Dave and I actually discussed this in length and have agreed to disagree - but I am not letting it go! THEY CHEATED!!!! During the movie "Ghostface" runs around doing his "Ghostface" thing and those familiar with the movies will know that usually there is more than one killer thus 2 different Ghostfaces. Now I am not counting times when stunt people are used etc - I am talking about a flat our credit to a guy at the end as .... "GHOSTFACE". Just NO! That's cheating. One of the things we look for is body type - height - movement etc. If you rewatch the original and know the killers you can actually tell when it is meant to be Stu and when it is meant to be Billy. PUTTING A COMPLETELY ROGUE BIG GUY IN THE SUIT IS CHEATING. I will DIE on that bridge. OK Moving on ....
3. The plot. OK this plot wasn't too bad. I liked the idea that it tied back to Billy somehow, and Stu kinda sorta with a super tenuous link - but anyway .... The Billy CGI stuff? Oh where were the Marvel people that created Young Tony Stark - we needed THEM! I love Billy - he is one of my all time fav characters and I love they found a way to bring him back to the screen in a way that made sense - just some of those were super creepy. Remember Annoying Orange? That kinda vibe. (On a side note I do wish they would have explored the psychiatric issues a little more - that would have been interesting). One of the killers was super obvious - the other I think I would have gotten IF THEY HADN'T CHEATED! (See point 2).
4. I mean it's a slasher. Injuries are often never as bad as they seem - things heal quickly - and in Woodsboro - the way that hospital is? DAMN Don't even get taken there - I swear there are NO staff - but the continuity in the wounds in this was too much even for me to overlook. Just total fail.
5. Deaths - yes they have to happen but it was a running joke that Dewey survived everything. I HATE that they killed him off. HATE IT! They brought him back as this sad alcoholic, only to have him rally and help, just to kill him off. NOPE. Pointless kill (although Dave disagrees here - He has been waiting for it). Also Gale - Gale - the reason for his distraction - is devastated for like 30 seconds. Just NOPE to all of that.
Finally to sum up - there were some fun call backs to the original that I enjoyed. A reference in Dewey's place to Tatum who has been conspicuous in her absence since her death in the first one. There are also many references to her final scene. The music was spot on! They nailed the classic themes that run though the franchise (although more people recognize the main one as the "Peaky Blinders" theme now), but many, many things for fans to watch for.
And of course - "For Wes" - That was perfect!
Dave - Dave Christy loves horror, music, documentaries and more. He is also the co-runner of several fan based groups including Morningstars (THE Lucifer fan group also run by Melanie), and now is a member of the VIPers Spotlight Lounge team for Melanie's Muses. Other than "In The Spotlight" Features -check out his "31 Days Of Halloween Movies"
The familiar Dimension logo opening the first 4 installments of the “Scream” movies is missing from the latest feature. It could be one of the reasons they went with the title “Scream” instead of “Scream 5”. New studio, new start? I still refuse to call it just “Scream” though. There is already a movie called “Scream” and in this franchise. They know it exists. Even if it isn’t in the franchise, if you know it exists, pick a different title! The other day I saw a 2021 movie up called “The Naked Gun”. What? No, not the Leslie Nielsen movie. Will we see another movie called “Jaws” and “Psycho” too? (Deep inhale, and exhale). Ok, now that rant is over.
Now onto our regularly scheduled feature. Opening with the iconic phone call. Does anyone even answer calls from “unknown caller”? I don’t. Hell, half the time I don’t answer it if I do know who they are. There are alot of familiar tones and pacings scattered throughout the movie. Its been 11 years since the last one but they need to keep up appearances even though it may be a double edged sword. Change too much, they don’t like it. Keep it the same, they don’t like it. One thing that hasn’t changed is Woodsboro has the worst hospital staff ever. “Scream 4” and “Scream 5” have patients taking out their own needles and the pulse ox off their fingers and not a nurse in sight. Even when the patient leaves their room, no one in the hall. When my pulse ox wasn’t reading, I had a nurse there in a minute.
Keeping things updated and staying with what we have come to expect from this franchise. We march forward into each jump scare as we are treated with horror references, purposely dropped lines to imply that each character is the killer, and meta laced lines, even in the background. A YouTube video trashing why the choice was made to not call “Stab 8” “Stab 8” and just went with “Stab”! One thing that never changes is the killers always want to frame Sydney for the murders. Haven't they learned that never works?
And a death I've been waiting for "Scream 3". Movies need stakes. Slashers bring back characters to kill them off. Elm Street did it with a few characters. Jamie Lee was killed off in the Halloween series a couple times, and I think its coming again in "Halloween Ends" but thats just a guess. Dewey finally gets it 4 movies after he was originally supposed to die in the original. To quote "Scream 3", "every time this guy enters the room, he ends up a damn shish kabob". Why hasn't he died before this? Gale's been shot a few times, stabbed. Sydney's been mutilated too. Slashers kill off characters. The rule of the slasher genre is supposed to be only the killers can take this kind of beating and not die. I think its about time Dewey got it and it should be Gale and Sydney's turn next.
As a bonus we get to see a little more of the “Stab” movie. Maybe one day, we’ll see the complete movie as a bonus feature. One small thing that bothered me is a false fact. A character mentions watching a movie about Randy getting killed. But he didn’t get killed in the original “Stab”. Umm, I mean the original “Scream”. (Mel here with a little edit - my interpretation was that the Stab movies had covered all the scream events with there having been 8 because there was a mention of how Judy was a "bit character" and she didn't appear until the 4th film in the Scream franchise).
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