Skip to content

Scream (2022) January 15th, 2022

Through its first four installments the Scream franchise successfully built a world where homicidal killers orchestrate intricate murders dependent on breaking down the fads and trends of popular horror films. The franchise’s success relies on balancing self deprecating horror film criticisms while being a perfect example of the slasher genre. The four preceding films in the saga managed to reach this high bar in a way that, at least to me, always felt fresh. Could the 5th film in the series, the first made after the driving creative force of the franchise Wes Craven’s death, hold its own?

Scream 4 deconstructed remakes leaving 5cream (Look, the movie’s called Scream but so is Scream so in order to avoid a situation like that of The Mummy I’m going to call the 5th Scream movie 5cream. Deal with it.) to tackle the concept of the ‘requel’, a continuation of the previously established story relying heavily on specific plot elements of the original. Instead of recasting familiar characters and retelling origin stories like you would in a remake, a requel continues building on that original work while establishing new characters to take the reins for future films. 5cream even takes its meta stance on requels as far as calling itself Scream, not Scream 5.

If you’re having trouble grasping this concept think about the last three Star Wars films or Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Star Wars left Han Solo, Princess Leia, and Luke Skywalker in the dustbin while characters like Rey, Poe, and Finn are lucky I remembered their names (I did, didn’t I?). Shia LaBeouf’s character Mutt was positioned to carry the Indiana Jones franchise for the next 30 years, earn billions of dollars, and give Indy the chance to end his story with aplomb (lol, how’s that working out?). In a marketplace where a movie’s only green lit if it has a built in audience it’s safe to assume we’re never going to see the end of requels, which means it’s the perfect time for Scream to rip them apart dissect their insides.

I am an unapologetic but extremely critical fan of this franchise. It took me nearly a decade to appreciate Scream 4‘s brilliance but I’ve improved my critic abilities since then and now I’m better equipped to approach film critiques with a sharper, more nuanced perspective. 5cream rules! Yes that is a play on the notion that Scream established the horror film ‘rules’! Yes that is a joke too subtle and niche for anyone living outside my head to get it without explanation! Yes I know the only way to recover from a bad joke is to over explain it so much that maybe you’ll luck out and someone in your audience will chuckle at the awkwardness, that’s where we are!

5cream probably won’t excite anyone who isn’t already enthralled by its heavily relied on franchise. Requiring an intimate knowledge of the previous films to appreciate the amazing twists and tricks it pulls out for you, 5cream only rewards its most loyal fans but can gives tourists a good thrill while they’re visiting.

Honestly, what are you waiting for? (WRONG franchise!) Just give Scream 111 minutes to change your life for the better. It’s a self aware meta-slasher made by one of the best creative teams in the game! It knows slasher movies are predictable, it knows they suck, so it stabbed them in the side of the head and created a new standard of excellence on their graves. Get in the right headspace, keep an open mind, and give Scream a chance.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: