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    April 20, 2011

    MOVIE REVIEW: SCREAM 4

    SCREAM 4 (18)

    Genre: Thriller/Horror/Mystery
    Release Date: 15 April 2011
    Running Time: 110 minutes
    Distributor: Dimension Films, Nusantara Edaran Filem
    Director: Wes Craven
    Screenplay: Kevin Williamson
    Starring: Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, David Arquette, Emma Roberts, Hayden Panettiere, Rory Culkin, Adam Brody, Anthony Anderson

    Plot: Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), now the author of a self-help book, returns home to Woodsboro after 10 years for the last stop of her book tour. There she reconnects with Sheriff Dewey (David Arquette) and Gale (Courteney Cox), who are now married, as well as her cousin Jill (Emma Roberts) and her Aunt Kate (Mary McDonnell). Unfortunately, Sidney's visit also brings about the return of Ghostface, putting Sidney, Gale, and Dewey, along with Jill, her friends, and the whole town of Woodsboro in danger once again.

    Review: What's coming for the fourth time when the fourth time is practically unnecessary? The answer is Scream 4. Lucky enough, it is not a reboot but it is still a sequel; one that takes some times before a new one coming in to strike again. Back to my earlier question, is it necessary to have a fourth trip down the town of Woodsboro for another slashing session by the Ghostface? Well, not necessary. It's been more than a decade since the popular slasher trilogy which I supposed is completed but returns in a new decade with a set of new rules. Yes, you can juggle around Wes Craven's name but he is no longer a consistent maestro of horror anyway. So, does Scream 4 worths all the bloody desires to establish perhaps a new trilogy?


    Scream 4 started out with some cameo from Kristen Bell, well to show some scenes from the film within the film, the Stab series. On the fifteenth anniversary of the Woodsboro massacre by Billy Loomis and Stu Macher, high school students Jenny Randall (Aimee Teegarden) and Marnie Cooper (Brittany Robertson) are attacked and brutally killed by a new Ghostface. (Of course we have a new Ghostface or else we won't have this fourths series after all). Whether it is a right timing or what so ever, the following day, Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) returns to Woodsboro to promote her new self-help book but ends up becoming a suspect in the murders. With some crucial evidence in her rental car, she is forced by Dewey Riley (David Arquette) to stay in Woodsboro until the crime is solved.

    While in town, she stays with her aunt Kate Roberts (Mary McDonnell) and cousin Jill (Emma Roberts), who is dealing with the betrayal of her ex-boyfriend Trevor Sheldon (Nico Tortorella). As expected, the Ghostface killer continues to slaughter victims, taking the lives of many people (mostly teenagers of course and those related to Sidney in some way) in the town. Sensing the danger, the Rileys and Sidney Prescott must band together, racing against the time to identify the new Ghostface killer before things turn out of control. In the process, they (and you too) may encounter some major twist (or rather surprise) in the end. So, ask yourself this and brace yourself to look for the answer - who is the new Ghostface killer?


    Looking at a bright side, Scream 4 is way better than last December's My Soul To Take. Oh God, that was a terrible piece of writing and it felt inconsistent and purely predictable! For some relieve, the good news is that Scream 4 avoided those trends convincingly, all thanks to some form of smart partnership between director Wes Craven and writer Kevin Williamson. We have seen this partnership been effective when they created Scream - one of the horror slasher genre best. It opens up with some smart-deriving horror talks because basically everyone in Woodsboro loves watching horror films, and like an Inception-movie within a movie, we are introduced into the movie franchise known as Stab, adapted from Sidney Prescott's real life event. Yes, Scream 4 has an intriguing and smart access to its witty and funny dialogues. From the plot aspect, there is a lot of memory to live for in Scream 4 given that it provides genuinely-enough screams and thrills for you to endure for the next 110 minutes. Yes, enough scares for you to last till your last bite of pop-corns.

    But there is a big problem lying there just like any other forms of horror slasher. It is sometimes mistaken for been sickingly-stupid due to the fact that the story Scream 4 is trying to sell is pretty much cliche and too formulaic to begin with. We have seen these same old tactics of horror slashing, suspenses and unbelievable twists from Craven again and again. Sometimes, it gets kind of tiring because we get familiarize with this kind of suspenses, particularly if you observed the similar pattern from all the Scream series. Scream 4 is not a groundbreaking horror experience and works more like a remake of the first Scream movie that caters the younger generation. There are also plenty of stereotyping here; for instance, the victims have to be some sicking annoying and hormone-enraging teenagers. Why all blonde are so dumb? And here's the best - why only the killer is been a smart-ass and able to pop-up here and there like he/she possesses some ability to walk fast-swifting and invisibly?


    There are plenty of plot holes, some deem illogical and feels unreasonable at times trying to connect each details. For some of the teenagers here in Woodsboro, clearly they only cares about making fun of the Ghostface massacre dating back 15 years ago and the fact that they are dumb to learn from the history. The victims are just ignorant and allowing themselves to be an easy target after all. Despite four Scream events, I bet we will have the fifth one and again, no one learns from the mistake, well except the primer three. SPOILERS, the story fails to bring in a bigger and stronger case on why Jill Roberts wants to take on the role of the Ghostface. It's a bit silly to think of the reasons that she gave. However, Scream 4 is not all that bad when it comes to playing some pure horror, bloody multiple stabbing game. It comes with style and wit, for that what makes Wes Craven so famous for. Yes, there are same old tiring stuffs that dare the cognitive for survival, yet that's the smart elements that gives a giddy reminder on how awesome the original Scream movie was.

    Scream 4 works more like a remake of the first Scream movie. It sorts of 'rebooting' the same old pattern of killing and now known as a cycle to terrorize after 15 years of silence. Once again, it is just been formulaic, showcasing stereotyping and lack of human insight consciousness among the teenagers that live here in once bloody pool of Woodsboro. It is not that bad, considering there are dialogues you can laugh for and some silliness you can chuckle to.

    THE RATING:
    Story: 3.0
    Casts: 3.0
    Cinematography: 3.5
    Effects: 3.5
    GREEN-TEA-O-METER: 12.6
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