"Scream" came out in 1996 and it was credited with
revitalizing the horror genre. After years of sub-par sequels
based off of great horror movies like "Halloween" and "A
Nightmare on Elm Street", it was a relief to see a clever
and scary slasher film. The best aspect about Scream is
that it poked fun at classic movie clichés and still ended
up providing enough thrills to satisfy hardcore horror fans
and general audiences. Since "Scream" was a sleeper hit,
two more sequels were released.
"Scream 2", which came out a year later, was just as
good as the first one. However, "Scream 3" was a huge step
down from the previous movies and the franchise went into
retirement. Now it has been about ten years after the last
Scream movie, and the filmmakers were aiming the make a
new trilogy starting with Scream 4. However, was the world
really begging for another Scream movie? The film begins
on the fifteenth anniversary of the original Woodsboro murders.
After an innovative intro, two high school students are
murdered by a new killer wearing the infamous Ghostface
The heroine of the Scream franchise, Sidney Prescott
(Neve Campbell), is now a successful writer and returns
to Woodsboro to promote her new book the day after the murders.
However, it looks like Sidney cannot catch a break as the
police find some evidence related to the murders in her
rental car. Now, Sidney must stay in town since she is a
suspect in this new case. At the same time we are introduced
to some new characters which include Sidney's cousin Jill
(Emma Roberts), and her friends Olivia Morris (Marielle
Jaffe) and Kirby Reed (Hayden Panettiere), who receive some
threatening calls from the Ghostface Killer. Plus Sidney
reunites with Dewey Riley (David Arquette), who is now the
sheriff of Woodsboro, and his wife Gail Weathers (Courteney
Cox). Those two were are the main characters from the previous
films. After several murders Dewey is reluctant on letting
Gale get involved with the case. So Gale decides to solve
it herself since she has already been through these situations
in the past movies. Then she meets two high school movie
geeks, Charlie Walker (Rory Culkin) and Robbie Mercer (Erik
Knudsen), who give her advice on the killer's next move.
From this point on I am going to stop because we start running
into some major spoilers. Did the world really need another
Scream movie? Yes, it did. I was really surprised by this
movie. I was expecting another bland sequel to a tired franchise,
but the film was pretty good.
The film was funny and filled with witty dialogue. Plus
there were enough kills and screams to satisfy the horror
movie standards. I liked how the film poked fun at the new
crop of horror films from the 2000's, and there were some
surprisingly good moments in the film that made me remember
why I loved this franchise. Compared to the latest crop
of bland horror films (Final Destination, Hostel, Saw),
it was a breath of fresh air. I did have a couple of problems
with the movie. First of all Neve Campbell seemed to be
on auto pilot throughout this whole film. It was great to
see Sidney Prescott again, but it felt like she was going
through the motions. That goes for the other two returning
actors, Arquette and Cox. All of their performances were
not terrible, but the characters were not as interesting
as they were in the previous movies. Also there were some
major plot holes in the movie.
For example the characters in "Scream 4" were all aware
of horror movie clichés, yet some of them still ventured
out at night by themselves while there was a serial killer
on the loose. In addition, it was apparent that the Woodsboro
Police Force were totally incompetent at doing their jobs.
This was the second time a massacre like this had happened,
so you think that the Woodsboro police would get assistance
from the state police or even the FBI. Nevertheless, there
was still a lot to like about this film..
Image & Sound:
Video and Audio: The 1080p Blu-ray transfer of "Scream
4" is excellent as the details and coloring look great on
TV. The night scenes are not too dark, which is a sign of
relief. You can still see what is going during the shadowy
scenes. The audio presentation for "Scream 4" is just as
excellent as the video presentation. The score is high quality
and the clarity of the dialogue is clear and concise. Plus
the surround sound really immerses you in all the action
scenes without it being too loud. -----
There are a decent amount of extras on the "Scream 4"
disc. There is an audio commentary with Director Wes Craven
and Stars Hayden Panettiere and Emma Roberts. In addition,
Neve Campbell appears for about 45 minutes via telephone.
The track has the basic elements like the picture's structure,
location details, scrapped and re-imagined ideas and some
enjoyable banter. It is decent, but nothing too engaging.
Then there are some deleted and extended scenes which total
clock in at about 26 minutes. Plus Craven gives audio commentary
with these scenes, which is nice.
There is a gag reel and a featurette called "The Making
of Scream 4", which is too short in my opinion. There is
also a "Scream 4" video game promotion. In addition, the
Blu-ray also comes with a DVD and Digital copy of the film,
which is always a nice perk. However, all of the special
features with the exception of the "Scream 4" video game
promotion are in standard definition. If you are paying
for a Blu-ray copy, then everything should be in high definition.