Known for both its meta-jokes about horror films and its bloodshed, Scream returns for the first time in a decade.
Have you ever heard of Rekwell?
Apparently, this is something between a reboot and a sequel – and that’s what Scream 5 (even though the 2022 movie is officially titled Scream, we will call it Scream 5 for clarity). Not quite a reboot, because the action takes place in the same timeline as the original franchise, and not quite a sequel because the focus is on a new generation of characters, but the old guard is still around.
It’s been 10 years since the last part of The Scream, and the returning Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette have joined a group of young people including Melissa Barrera, Mason Gooding, Jenna Ortega, Jack Quaid, Dylan Minnette and Jasmine Savoy-Brown.
In the quarter century since Billy Loomis and Stu Macher butchered their classmates, many Ghostface imitators have emerged, and another is wreaking havoc in Woodsboro. And the one behind the mask is targeting those associated with the original murders.
The term “requel” is often found in Scream 5 while its pop culture-obsessed characters painstakingly navigate the intricacies of successful film franchises, venomous fandoms, and anything horror-movie-related, be it classic hack or sublime storytelling.
It’s part of Scream’s DNA to be so enamored with the extra-textual Easter eggs of its genre, with direct references to Psycho, Babadouk, Jordan Peel or horror master John Carpenter. And, of course, back to the history of our own franchise.
The 1996 original was the same, and that iconic question “What’s your favorite horror movie?” always conjures up the image of Drew Barrymore speaking into a white cordless phone.
Scream 5 picks up meta-hardness on the nose until 11, and it’s both smart and tedious, often at the same moment.
But just because you are pointing to something derivative does not protect you from the same charge.
There are so many references to everything from former franchise director Wes Craven (who died in 2015) to hand-wringing. Star Wars: The Last Jedi… If you’re not very good at pop culture, you can get whipped by trying to keep up.
After Craven’s death, director duo Matt Bettinelli-Alpin and Tyler Gillett took over behind the camera. The couple are best known for their 2019 horror movie. Ready or Not, a riotous and damn interesting film that balances tension and humor.
Scream 5 it lacks the spark that Bettinelli-Olpin and Gillette brought to their previous venture. Scream 5 it is certainly ridiculous and disrespectful, but where it falls is that it is rarely scary.
It works as a commentary on horror movies and fan culture, but rarely makes your heart beat faster. He plays with the conventions of the genre to the point that he actually forgets to use them as a scare.
What is he doing Scream 5 ineffective as a horror movie, even a classic slapdash. But it’s still entertaining and engaging as a frivolous and cocky film that will appeal to its rusty fans or even those who haven’t seen it since. Scream 2…
The scream is already in theaters
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