The first 'Scream' movie debuted in 1996 and due to its success, Director Wes Craven went on to produce 2 more, which I watched fondly as a fan. The film franchise ended in the year 2000 and I thought that was the end of Sidney Prescott.
Who knew that 11 years later, the same director went on to make Scream 4 or Scre4m, still starring the 3 titular characters played by Neve Campbell, the recently off-screen divorced couple Courtney Cox and David Arquette.
This movie spawned a horror-comedic genre of movies and mocked a slew of many other slasher movies in the market with a predictable and shallow plot. In the original, Drew Barrymore was quickly killed off within minutes of appearing on screen and that shocked the audience back then. This seemed to be the trademark of the film series where the characters were killed one by one and sometimes within minutes and seconds of each other. One would have expected the fourth installment to be lame and predictable but it brought some pleasant surprises to me. It continued to thrill me with its scene within scene opening and it left the audience guessing the identities of the killers right till the end. It was definitely refreshing to see the same characters Sidney, Gale Weathers and Dewey Riley as if they were old friends whom I have not seen for a long while. By the way, both Neve and Courtney does not look a decade older than the last movie.
I initially wondered why the 3 of them would reprise their roles after so long, especially Neve Campbell who disappeared after Scream 3, but I think I understand after watching it. After all, who wouldn't want to be associated with a successful franchise despite being out of the limelight for a while? There were new twists and the plot was current and relevant, in the sense that it represented a new yet disturbing generation of teenagers, so influenced and affected by the internet age and characterized by a detached apathetic state of mind. Emma Roberts, the niece of Julia Roberts and daughter of Eric Roberts, played a (spoiler alert) psychotic teenager who orchestrated the entire slew of killings. Who would have thought and how else can one explain why she plotted to kill her own close friends, her cousin Sidney and even her own mother all in the name of achieving instant fame status in the shortest possible way through such premeditated killings? Which normal person would do that if she wasn't sick in the mind?
In this recent installment, Anna Paquin, Kristen Bell were killed off in the opening scenes. Hayden Panettiere, best remembered for her role as the high school cheerleader with regenerative healing powers in the TV series 'Heroes', was however less immortal here. She was stabbed towards the end and ironically, her healing powers could no longer save her from a certain death in this movie.
Some links on this film series are attached below: