Such was not the case.
Scream 4 opened very strong. The first 10 minutes of the film feature several cameos and a sequence that could perhaps define the term “meta.” I think that Williamson realized this as well and liked the thought so much that he actually worked the term “meta” into the script as a joke later in the film.
The joke didn’t take.
The cameos are worthwhile, but I think to some extent, pandering to a bigger box office draw. Anna Paquin will draw the True Blood and The Piano (heeheehee) crowd and Kristen Bell the Veronica Mars, Gossip Girl and loads of other geek friendly fare...hey, I can call the name because I'm in the crowd!
Williamson's meta joke missing the mark was exemplary of so many of the problems with the humor...just missing something or another. I am sad to say that much of it was timing, which falls in part to the actors. Courtney Cox and David Arquette have both been extremely entertaining and funny in the past, but not here. But wait, Reel Rhino, why should these folks being funny even matter…this is a horror film!
Comedic undertones were a huge part of the first three films of this series and this combination of laughs and scares is what has made these movies so successful…up until now.
We join the action in Scream 4 with the return of the iconic Sindey Prescott (Neve Campbell) to the iconic town of Woodsboro. She is in town for her book release, a story of survival and creating a new sense of being in the aftermath of tragedy.
Campbell is subdued throughout the film, even in the moments of terror that she experiences that one would think should result in some kind of a rise. Perhaps she (Prescott) is jaded to the thought of having a knife lunged towards her. Perhaps it is her continued ability to place so perfectly escape kicks, just barely eluding that dastardly villain, Ghostface Killer.
But for this returning cast, none of the primaries, Campbell, Arquette, or Cox, gave anything of substance to this film.
The faces are new, the story is not.
Other than adding Twitter, Facebook, streaming video, and non-stop texting by all of the younglings, this is the same old story, rehashed.
I was bored by this movie.
One of my chief complaints is that while red herrings were a plenty, there was barely a single time that someone dropped into perceived peril, that they weren’t actually engaged and/or killed by our villain.
How can you build suspense if you don’t juke right at least once, but actually drive left for the hoop?
At various points throughout the film, as the previous entries have done, the movie-geek world was called upon in practice as well as in dialogue. It was continuously referred to that with a new series, the stakes are higher and the outcome would be crazy.
I would argue just the opposite. Craven offered us nothing new but a little bit of technology. And how does that make this so fresh? I mean if you did everything the same as in 1996, you would essentially have created a period horror film. Of course kids are going to be texting…that isn’t enough to woo me into loving this film.
Generally speaking, the ending was watchable, but I think only because with all of these films, you have little to no legitimate foreshadowing to guess how it will end.
Worry not, movie goers, I didn’t just spoil the ending for you, but rather I am pointing out a weakness of horror films today.
I love horror done right. This is not horror done right.
Here’s hoping there is something better in store for Reel Rhino this weekend. I need to wash this film from the forefront of my movie mind.
Disagree with me…let me hear about it…comment below. Rhino’s have thick skin…I’ll survive.
My plans to also catch Robert Redford's THE CONSPIRATOR were dashed by a sold out show...something I haven't had to worry about in quite some time. I think that is a good sign for the theater business, but a bum deal for me. I saw Born to Be Wild instead, the Morgan Freeman narrated IMAX documentary, and for as short as it was...40 minutes...it was pretty awe-inspiring.
That's all for now...until later...take care.