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Scream (2022) Movie Review

by Joseph Roy Wright 10 months ago in movie review
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The satirical horror franchise returns!

The new Ghost Face! in Stab 8.

Scream (or 5cream, is what I like to call it!) is a satirical slasher movie that unfortunately commits the same clichés it is parodying. Although not a terrible movie, it is still effective in it's horror. There are some scary and gory kills here and there, but they are very few and far between. Instead the movie spends a little too much time trying to catch you up with characters new and old. It has a lot on it's plate! You see, this movie is an attempt to soft reboot the franchise. In typical Scream fashion; we even have a scene of the movie nerd talking about how the plot is similar to that of the Star Wars Sequel Trilogy and Ghost Busters Afterlife, how it's essentially a remake of the first movie, but with the legacy characters from the original.

(Jasmin Savoy Brown) plays the movie nerd character in Scream (2022).

This was where I started to get nervous! For Scream has always been a satire of Horrors, not movies in general. Because of this; Scream 5 often feels more like a comedy drama, with the rare moment of terror. At times, it doesn't even feel like a horror movie. This is especially frustrating when (spoiler!) the legacy character of Officer Dewey (David Arquette) dies by the hands of Ghost Face himself. You may think this would be horrifying, but it is overly emotional, like (other movie spoilers) the death of Han Solo in Star Wars: The Force Awakens or Aunt May in and Spiderman: No Way Home. There is a slow motion shot of Gale (Courteney Cox) crying and reaching out (like how Rey did when Han died in Star Wars) and there is sad piano music in the background too. It's emotional, sure. Scary though? I didn't think so. It could've been, but they did the "emotional legacy character death" cliché. Frustrating!

The murder of Officer Dewey (David Arquette) is quite sad, but not very scary.

Now don't get me wrong; there are some good bits of satire here. For example: The Stab movie franchise makes a return in universe. This time there is a complete remake of the original Stab movie, but now the new Ghost Face (in Stab) has a silver mask instead of white, with a different outfit instead of the classic Grim Reaper get up. We get scenes of people bashing the movie online, saying that it's an awful remake and should've been called Sta8 (Do you get why I like to call the new Scream 5cream?). I quite liked this satire, it was amusing and entertaining, but it's very ironic how this Scream movie is called Scream (I know, confusing) instead of Scream 5, or 5cream. Because it's not a remake (like Sta8) but "a soft reboot", which to be honest, is just a fancy way of saying this is a sequel of Scream 4 really. You can probably guess why I find the film's attempts at satire to be very hit and miss, it spends a lot of time dissing other movies and slashers, but ultimately suffers from the same flaws as other movies. A very confusing mess at times, if you ask me.

The "Stab" movies make a return in universe, to be honest, this looks more interesting than the actual Scream 5.

Anyway enough about the satire, how is the rest of the movie? Is the plot intriguing? Is there an interesting twist? Well, as mentioned before; this is sort of like a remake of the original movie. There is a teenage girl named Sam Carpenter (Melissa Barrera) who has a boyfriend (Jack Quaid) and a diverse group of friends who all have their own quirks, while a serial killer dressed like the reaper with a "ghost face" hunts them down one by one, Michael Myers style. There are a few interesting differences however, the main girl is the daughter of the original killer, Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich) from the first Scream and we see him appear from time to time, covered in blood as a hallucination whenever she is alone (a satire of American Werewolf in London?). It is heavily implied throughout the film that maybe our main protagonist is the killer all along! (Which would've been a more interesting twist than the one they eventually went with in my opinion) as the evidence stacks up, it is proven more and more likely that the killer is indeed a part of this friend group. The question is: which one?

Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich) returns as a bloodied hallucination in this new Scream. Pic from Scream (1996)

The finale of this is actually surprisingly tense and full of action. The characters are all trapped inside the main protagonist's house and now most of the cast have been brutally murdered! Everyone is suspicious of each other and the final moments turn into a "who done it?" murder mystery, as they are all paranoid. It honestly gave me a lot of "The Thing" vibes while watching this, and that was also a very intense horror movie. Sadly, the twist is very underwhelming and disappointing; our killer is the protagonist's boyfriend and her other friend, Amber (Mikey Madison) as the second killer.

“Oh so like the twist ending to the original Scream?” Yes, almost exactly. There are a few differences, like how our main protagonist releases her inner killer (the daughter of Billy, remember?) and brutally murders her now ex-boyfriend in a spectacularly gory fashion. Amber gets thrown onto a lit stove by two legacy characters, Gale and Sidney-(Neve Campbell), turning Amber into a female Freddy Krueger lookalike. She then grabs a knife and starts screaming and running towards the camera before being shot dead in the head with a pistol. A lot of chaos and over the top horror action happens in this finale and it is genuinely thrilling, by far the best part of this unfortunate mess of a film.

The finale is quite violent and over the top, a great finish to an otherwise bumpy film.

So overall; Scream 5 wasn't an awful movie, it has it's unique moments and twists on old ideas. There is a lot of call backs to older films in the franchise, which is nice, and it has a fair bit of horror and action to keep yourself entertained too. The satire can be very hit and miss however and can come across as a bit pretentious, when it later commits other dumb movie clichés later on throughout the film. There does seem to be a little too many scenes of characters just talking and catching up with the legacy characters as well, while also trying to establish the new characters, it can be quite exhausting and a little convoluted for a slasher film. It is nice to see old characters return however, but it's been done a million times now in modern movies, so it doesn't have the same impact as let's say, Star Wars: The Force Awakens did (especially since they were also in Scream 4 from 2011).

I don't regret watching Scream 5, as a new popcorn flick to watch in the cinema, it was quiet enjoyable. However, if I was sat at home and had a choice to watch any Scream movie, I'd definitely pick the first one over this semi-remake/sequel to Scream 4 any day.

5 out of 10 - Average.

Rated 5/10. Scream 5 is an ok movie, not great or bad, just somewhere in the middle. If you want a new horror to watch in the cinema, you could pick this. If you're at home, just watch the original.

movie review

About the author

Joseph Roy Wright

Hello there.

My name is Joseph Roy Wright, the British author of 5 Independent novels!

I like to write about movies, pop culture, fiction and horror! I review all the latest films (and classics), I also like to write short stories.

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