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Scream VI (2023)

Scream VI movie poster

After the last Scream movie I swore I’d never watch another. I love the first two but every one since has been insultingly predictable and disappointing.

I know we’re talking about a horror film here and I concede that to a point, certain exceptions have to be made in order to fully enjoy them. However, I just feel like the Scream movies push the boundaries of believability a little too much for me to not feel like I’ve wasted two hours of my life by the time the end credits roll.

That said, and despite my stubbornness and trepidation, I’d heard that this latest one was different to the others, and that some people even consider it to be the best one since the original.

Well, curiosity got the better of me and when Mrs Screenroom suggested we put it on recently I thought, “what the hell?!”

Scream VI (2023)

If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s a horror/mystery/thriller and (in case, like me you get confused by Roman numerals) it’s the sixth entry in the Scream series.

It stars Melissa Barrera (Scream - 2022), Jenna Ortega (Wednesday), Courteney Cox (all the other Scream movies), Jasmin Savoy Brown (Yellowjackets), Mason Gooding (Fall) and Dermot Mulroney (The Grey) among others.

This is what it’s about according to the internet:

“Four survivors of the Ghostface murders leave Woodsboro behind for a fresh start in New York City. However, they soon find themselves in a fight for their lives when a new killer embarks on a bloody rampage.”

One thing I will say about this instalment is that it does feel refreshingly different to the others (to a point). The fact that they’ve moved the slashy goings-on away from Woodsboro and to the new location of New York definitely revitalises things.

It’s not just the location either. The general tone of the film is darker, with each new murder feeling even more savage and brutal than in the previous movies.

The killer, although retaining a lot of the same Ghostface-like-inadequacies as their predecessors has a much angrier and determined intent in this movie, even opting to use a shotgun in one scene as opposed to their signature knife. That in particular I thought was a nice touch.

In true “Scream” style everyone in this new mystery is a suspect, and throughout the film various red herrings and cleverly placed misdirection has you suspecting just about everyone in the movie.

Just as I was starting to getting a little weary of the cliche obviousness of it all there was a scene in which horror movie aficionado, Mindy (Jasmin Savoy Brown) points out all the suspects and details why they should be suspected. I found this particularly refreshing since I already had my suspicions about a couple of the characters she singles out and thought it was all a bit too obvious. I thought the fact that they addressed the idea that the audience might be starting to get wise at this point was a real breath of fresh air and something they hadn’t done before. Unfortunately though, it was all about to change…

Something I hate about movies in general, but horror movies in particular, is when a film insults the intelligence of its audience. I get that it’s “a movie”, and I’m more than willing to suspend disbelief long enough to enjoy the journey - however, when characters who serve a purpose to that story survive the kinds of wounds or scenarios (in this case, stab wounds) that disposable characters die from, I’m out! And unfortunately that happens more in this film than in any other film (horror or otherwise) that I’ve ever seen. It’s ridiculous!

It’s not just physical wounds either. Apparently these days grief doesn’t exist (unless it furthers the story) and it seemingly takes no time at all to recover from the emotional trauma of losing a friend/loved one…

Another thing that irritates me about horror films is how once the killer is revealed their persona becomes that of a crazy person despite acting perfectly sane and normal up to that point. Again though, this is a typical horror movie trope, but of all of them it’s one that winds me up more than the others, and (SPOILER ALERT) it happens in this film too.

But anyway…

When you put all of the annoying stuff aside this isn’t actually a bad film. It’s certainly better than the previous three. It’s also notably the first film in the series to not star Neve Campbell who decided not to return after feeling her salary didn’t reflect her value. The movie doesn’t suffer from her absence though, and it shows that a franchise can work when one of the main stars decides enough is enough. I just hope Courtney Cox is next, her extensive plastic surgery is becoming scarier than Ghostface himself!

Was this better than I expected it to be? Yes. Is it the best one since the original? No, but then I do have a soft spot for Scream 2! Would I recommend it? Yes, but only if you’re a fan of the other movies and are happy to overlook some seriously questionable survival scenarios. As much as it pains me to admit it, I did enjoy it.

Already seen it? What did you think? Let me know in the comments.


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