Wes Craven’s original Scream from 1996 is credited as starting the whole business of the self-referential, self-aware horror movie, and that’s probably true. Scream 4 tries to push the limits of the approach with its film within a film within a film structure with varying degrees of success, enough to make the film interesting. The premise finds Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) coming back to the town where she barely survived the original murders. The town is a natural stop for a tour promoting her book about surviving the murders, murders that essentially put Woodsboro on the map through a series of novels based on them by fellow survivor Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) and the seemingly endless series of movies spawned by the books. It’s understandable that Gale, whose thunder Sidney has stolen with her book, is not that keen on Sidney’s return. It’s less understandable why everyone else is, since where Sidney goes the Ghostface killer is bound to show up with slicing and dicing on his mind. And that’s what happens here, which is a given since otherwise there’s no movie. All this is enjoyable enough, assuming you like this sort of movie. The murders are well-staged and plentiful, and the characters are sharply drawn. Plus, the who’s-doing-it aspect is fairly well handled, though you’ll probably guess it correctly about five minutes before the film tells you. However, the follow-up scenes make up for that in over-the-top lunacy.
Official Site: www.scream-4.com
Director: Wes Craven
Writer: Kevin Williamson
Producer: Iya Labunka and Wes Craven
Cast: Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, Emma Roberts, Hayden Panettiere, David Arquette, Adam Brody, Anthony Anderson and Alison Brie
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