Movie Review: Scream (2022)

Now in theatres from Paramount Pictures.

A quarter century of death stab for cutie culminates in the sights and sounds of settling. Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett’s 2022 reboot of Scream (C+), which is essentially the fifth movie in continuity in the meta horror whodunit series, takes place 25 years after the streak of fatal stabbings from the original film as a new killer dons the Ghostface mask and targets a group of teenagers to resurrect secrets from the small California town’s deadly past. The traditional cold open – this time featuring Jenna Ortega as the ingenue who gets a threatening phone call while alone at her house – is promising with its insider discussion of what makes an “elevated modern horror movie,” but alas the film that follows doesn’t further deliver on the premise to forge a more creative path with artier intentions. Instead we follow an ensemble of newcomers ranging from Melissa Barrera to Mikey Madison to Mason Gooding who are all given scant dialogue with which to work and collectively evoke minimal chemistry or empathy. Only Jack Quaid gets some funny throwaway lines as the character who perpetually states the obvious about the horror tropes the group is experiencing within the “rules of the requel,” kind of a sequel many years later bringing back familiar stars to extend a franchise. The film’s third act finally hits high gear as those original movie stars get their hand at revenge and redemption, with Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette all effective in resurrecting their wise and weary characters. The final thirty minutes is a hoot and while still not “elevating” the horror to any new plane at least delivers what fans of the series have come to expect and love: twists and turns of the knife and events. So ultimately the slow-burn pays off for the new directors taking over for the late Wes Craven , but it’s regretful the intro and finale have more impact than the sometimes sluggish songbook in between.

Leave a Reply

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