Review: Scream 3 (2000)

scream 3 poster

SYNOPSIS: While “Stab 3” is in production, somebody in a ghost mask starts to murder the new cast members. This lures Sidney out from hiding deep in the woods where she lives, and she comes to Hollywood to face the killer for the final act. – via IMDB

Alright, alright, this was certainly the weakest Scream film so far. It just didn’t do things as well as its predecessors, which is a pity. Not to say that it was a total waste, there is still fun to be had, but definitely not on the same level as before. There are flaws, there are contrivances, there is so much useless screaming and not such snappy conversation… what a pity.

Courteney Cox’s hairdresser completely screwed up her hair. I mean whoa. Gale is this hot, tenacious reporter with very few qualms, sassy as can be and pretty hardcore. Then she’s back here, and she is all those things but that fringe. Goodness. It was like a horror movie all on its own! It really didn’t suit her or her character whatsoever.

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This one certainly lacked the charm of the previous two. I appreciated what was being done here, though I was not a big fan of everything being “the movies” and “on set”. It was gimmicky and didn’t work for very long at all.

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Neve Campbell returns as our reluctant heroine Sidney, and Scream 3 spends a little more time looking at her fractured psyche, as well as how she has locked herself away from the world, terrified and slowly dealing with things, but unwilling to be a part of the public eye anymore. Being dragged out because Ghostface is back was obviously inevitable, but the story really gets rolling when she steps in. I thoroughly enjoyed the throwbacks to seeing the set of Sidney’s home, the garage, etc. Those were nice little reminders, but some got overplayed and quickly. Our Randy Meeks got a little cameo, which was cool. We miss you Randy! But it also felt like it was squeezed in for those who raged about that terrible decision in the last film.

We have another cop here, which I am sure some ladies appreciated immensely. Patrick Dempsey plays Detective Mark Kincaid, the cop that is investigating the latest slew of murders, and who keeps Sidney at arms length while doing his job. I liked that not everybody pitied her out of hand, he was not for that. In his mind, she was a potential suspect, though he thaws later.

scream 3 detective mark horror movie

Something that I really miss? The “romance” of the phone calls has been lost, there are calls, but more often than not, like the last, it is more about slashing and killing than anything else.

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Then let’s talk about Parker Posey – I don’t like her. I never have, and I don’t think I ever will. I find her to be such an annoyance in all movies and she always comes across as whiney, no matter that she is playing the bitch/ruler/whatever. This was no exception – she never shut up, she was entitled, and I feel that she did more harm for the film than she did good.

scream 3 i'm the killer

As for the big killer reveal at the end, sheesh. That was a whole different kettle of fish to fry. I mean Cotton was being dragged in here (again), but he honestly didn’t last very long at all.

I cannot skip over mentioning Dewey in this post because we all know I am a huge fan. He provided some humour again, and watching him and Gale dance around each other after their history was something else entirely, but I felt that he was wasted here, and they make it look like Dewey can have no life or respect without Gale, which is kinda sad.

scream 3 it's your turn to scream

Scream 3 was also plagued by ridiculously silly and cheesy, predictable deaths, which was a little bit of a letdown. But when all is said and done, I have seen infinitely worse movies, this one still had some redeeming aspects and fits in with the trilogy nicely.

Review: Scream 2 (1997)

scream 2 poster

SYNOPSIS: Two years after the first series of murders, a new psychopath dons the Ghostface costume and a new string of killings begins. – via IMDB

Sequels aren’t usually that good, we all know that. It is a topic that this sequel harps on about, and it is pretty successful. For one, I still had an absolute blast with this movie, how conscious it was of the type of film it was (once again), how it mocked and taunted (again), yet did all those things anyway. Scream 2 managed to pull it off, but I had no doubt that it would, and no, not just because I had seen it a million times before. Hell, it even had a (really) brief glimpse of Joshua Jackson in it, so there weren’t complaints for me. Personally, I would have liked to have seen more of that.

The opening is one of those that have stuck with people for years after all was said and done, whether you remember the rest of the movie or not, we all remember the brutal toilet stall slaying of Phil and the screaming theatre death of Maureen.

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I was so happy to see Dewey again, I think he is such an adorable idiot, and David Arquette was perfectly cast to play him. He is truly a favourite of mine, and watching him and Courteney Cox together was great, they just worked. Dewey’s fury with Gale and her book was a point of incredible entertainment for me, he was so childish about it all, yet still so infatuated with her.

scream 2 gale and deweyscream 2 deweydewey

There was no shock in the reveal (hopefully nobody was expecting there would be), and though there were more murders in this one, they were not as meticulously planned as the first one, and also much less phone calls. I miss the phone calls. They were something I truly enjoyed about Scream. I think one thing that really fell flat in this movie was Ghostface… not quite what I was hoping for, and it was a little bit jarring, too. It wasn’t as smooth as it could have been, though not a complete waste.

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The back and forth between the characters was as sharp, smart and fast as always, so nothing has really changed there. Sidney is still hanging in there, our reluctant heroine who is surrounded by wonderful people. I felt so sorry for Randy, perpetually stuck in the dreaded friendzone. Sidney is a wonderful character to carry the Scream franchise because she isn’t too much or too little, she never takes over and is never forgotten, and that is something that so many horrors can mess up. The main characters from this franchise all have their time to shine.

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Gale kicks some serious ass. I love this woman. She is a shark and a super  mean bitch but she is hardcore, and she doesn’t take much crap from anyone. Sometimes she is just too harsh for some, and her lack of morals really is a bit rough at times, but she is someone that I really like.

scream 2 gale

Then something that happened in this movie that I am sure many fans are still horrified about. (Highlight text to view – SPOILER if you haven’t seen this yet). Killing Randy Meeks?! After all that we have been through with him, after all the lessons that he taught us! The only main character to be popped. Ugh. Why?! Craven, how did you think that was alright?! What the ever-loving hell was the meaning of that? 

 

I adored how Scream 2 starts up, and you are thinking they are going to do something different and you are missing all the characters you came to love, and slowly but surely they start creeping through the cracks. It really is something to witness them all coming together again to battle Ghostface, again, though it cannot possibly be the delicious Billy Loomis.

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Overall, Scream 2 is buckets of fun, while not as brilliant as its predecessor, it is a strong sequel with plenty of laughs, blood and gore – everything I am looking for in a film. Definitely worth the watch.

Review: Scream (1996)

scream movie poster

SYNOPSIS: A group of teens are pitted against a masked murderer that tests their knowledge of horror movies. – via IMDB

Originally I had these lined up for a JB & The Chop collaboration, but extenuating circumstances meant that the outing would have to be cancelled. These have long been lined up for publication for the next few Fridays, and I was quite sad to see of Wes Craven’s passing on Sunday. What a pity, and the man gave us a lot of great horrors, slashers, and thrillers over the years. There would never be a more perfect time to line these up, and so they have become tribute posts.

Popping this in, as much as my other half was calling out how lame this was and how cheesy  and stupid, I have to admit that I had a total blast. Why? Not only because I grew up watching this, but as I got older, I could finally appreciate some specific aspects of these movies. When I was a kid, it was just about some weird mask and terrorizing teenagers and being different from other horror movies yet completely the same. I am older now, wiser. What this movie is, is actually a stroke of genius. Why? Because it mocks on horror movies, does its thing, conforms and teases and jokes.

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In a quick way, it is fresh. Different. Goodness knows it has been ripped off from here to Kingdom Come, and it has endured a lot of mockery and cheese on its own, but when you get right down to it, Scream still holds up well after all this time. In fact, it holds up brilliantly. I swear I damn near wore the VHS out when I was a kid, I watched this movie so many times, checked it out of the video store a ton more.

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The opening scene for this movie is infamous. We all know it. Or, if you don’t, I am not quite sure where you have been. A creepy, weird phone call to Drew Barrymore? Check. A strange conversation that starts as funny and goes sour, quickly? Check. The popcorn on the stove that she is prepping for a movie that is our timer? Check. A superbly grisly death by the end of all the taunting and the crazy chase? Check.  Totally just one of those movies that was going to nail all the things I love in a film, and handles the delicate balance so well. This movie could have bombed, but it didn’t because there is a certain finesse behind it that just makes it all come together wonderfully.

Scream is so nineties, there is no way to get around that, but on the other hand, that just gives rise to all the nostalgia I feel when I watch that. Not because the nineties were anything to write home about or anything, but that was my decade, rugrat that I was and all.

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Scream is smarter than it is given credit for, and is constantly aware of what it is and how it is going about doing it. I find that awesome. It doesn’t get old, it doesn’t get boring, and it isn’t stale. It has an idea, and it runs with it, and is highly successful about it, too.

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I was a big fan of the Freddy Krueger nod that was in here, as well as the way it was implemented. I had a pretty good laugh, especially seeing as it was Wes Craven in that outfit 🙂

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While looking for the above, I found this… LOL!

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Anyway, I also really liked the casting. I mean, half these people you don’t see in movies anymore, though they were pretty popular in the nineties. They all did a good job with what they were given.

They made me laugh, they made me roll my eyes and cringe, but they also had me invested in what was going to happen and how things were going to play out.

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I feel for Skeet Ulrich – gosh, imagine getting a name like that as a kid and going through school?! I just couldn’t! Anyway, he was a cutie in a real fucked up, greasy sense, but it worked. Campbell was suited for the scared young girl with issues, David Arquette is a serious favourite of mine as the adorable Deputy Dewey, and Courteney Cox was perfect for the bitchy, sharky reporter. Seriously, like no qualms.

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The movie is quotable, too, and played off on a lot of movie clichés that had been seen a million times then, and have been seen a million more since. However, they all just seemed to be done so differently here, which is awesome.

I know he is doing only the most fucked up shit here, but he is damn fine while doing it :/ There’s something just slightly too erotic about the corn syrup licking and knife flicking…

billy loomis scream corn syrupskeet billy we all go a little mad sometimesbill scream knife hot

I know I am not alone in my sentiments. I think. I hope. I actually don’t even care. Yep bestie, me and the psychos again…

If you can’t tell from all the points above, I am a huge fan of Scream, it’s smart, it’s great fun and definitely worth watching! Thanks to Wes Craven for having given us something so awesome!