My Scream franchise rewatch, that I started back in October without really meaning to. Scream 4 is one of the first legacy sequels that I can think of. It might not be what everyone thinks of when it comes to a legacy sequel. There was a huge gap between Scream 3 and Scream 4 because it was planned to be a trilogy. Sadly, The Weinstein Company was all over this movie, which has caused issues in the last few years.
This was Wes Craven’s last movie before his passing in 2015. Kevin Williamson returned as writer. Ehren Kruger was hired to do rewrites, though not credited. Craven hadn’t lost a step when it came to the franchise. Williamson returning helped the new characters feel more real than the new characters in the previous movie. This was such a marked improvement from Scream 3 that it’s a shame that more people didn’t see it the first go round.
Scream 4 has a huge ensemble cast. It stars Neve Campbell, David Arquette, Courtney Cox, Emma Roberts, Hayden Panettiere, Anthony Anderson, Alison Brie, Adam Brody, Rory Culkin, Marielle Jaffe, Erik Knudsen, Mary McDonnell, Marley Shelton, and Nico Tortorella. The new cast is a lot of fun. Panettiere is a welcome breath of fresh air and so much fun. Campbell plays a new version of Sidney. Both Arquette and Cox play Dewey and Gale with new versions of the characters. All of the returning characters are more mature and are different from when we last saw them.
Scream 4 starts on the fifteenth anniversary of the Woodsboro Massacre, from the first movie. Sidney is ending her book tour in Woodsboro, where she is quickly wrapped up in the new murders. We’re quickly introduced to Jill Roberts, Sidney’s cousin, and her friends. Dewey and Gale are married, and Dewey is sheriff while Gale is a fiction writer, having retired from journalism. Everyone is wrapped into the investigation as the murders ramp up.
The practical effects in Scream 4 alongside the use of computer effects are fantastic. The kills in the movie are some of the most visceral kills in the franchise. There are some pretty gnarly looking stunts. The last fight scene has some wrestling level bumps in it. Marco Beltrami returns to score the movie and he is another welcome return to the series.
Scream 4 is a great slasher that deserves more than the tepid response it received officially. After this the Scream franchise would take a detour to TV. The first two seasons are fantastic while the third I’ve not been able to bring myself to finish watching. The next movie simply called Scream is coming out at the end of the week. I give Scream 4 8 webcam headsets out of 10.