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It'll Make You Scream

| Leisure by Arnold Leibrandt

But for all the wrong reasons…

Scream 4 (2011) is the fourth installment in the Scream slasher horror-film franchise.

The movie is yet again set in the small town of Woodsboro, ten years after the last Ghostface killings. Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) returns to her hometown as part of a tour for her new book that documents the trials and tribulations she endured during the previous attacks.

On the other hand, though, Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) is not having the same success. She is no longer a reporter but is attempting to write her own book detailing her experiences with the previous killings, but not only is she stuck with writer’s block but she’s also struggling to deal with her quickly fading fame.

Everything is going well for Sidney though as her book is a huge success, but things quickly turn sour when people start turning up dead and all the evidence points to the return of the serial killer, Ghostface.

Dewey Riley (David Arquette), husband of Gale Weathers and fellow serial killer survivor, was initially enjoying his promotion to Police Chief, but with a failing marriage and now a string of murders turning up things are not looking too good for him either.

Now just a few days short of Halloween the high school students of Woodsboro High have chosen to embrace the current horror overshadowing their town. They have decided to have a little festival; they plan to get together in a dark and ominous barn in the middle of nowhere and watch all the Stab movies (this is the movie franchise based on the books written by Gale about the previous attacks that took place years ago) in sequence. I guess kids will be kids.

Now with many students turning up dead, Sidney being pursued by Ghostface, Gale and Dewey on the case and with the festival quickly looming, things are not looking good for the people of Woodsboro.

The first three installments of the franchise were generally panned by critics but somehow managed to receive a cult following as well as an impressive turnover at the box office.

The franchise was originally meant to be a trilogy and unfortunately managed to pull that off. Now, ten years after the third installment, the film’s producers felt it was time to milk the franchise some more with yet another sequel.

Not only that, but rumour has it that this film’s success will determine whether or not there will be two more Scream sequels in our not-so-distant future.
Although the film did make a profit of an approximate 30-million US dollars, and even though this is a profit that seems like a lot of money to you and me, in the movie industry this is not very impressive, so it’s anyone’s guess as to whether or not we will see more – but fingers crossed that it ends at 4.

The original script was written by the writer of the first two installments and the script was then edited by the writer of the third film, also, Wes Craven, the director of the original trilogy, directs this film so you are led to expect the same type of film as the previous three, however, even one of the only three fans (that I know of) of the original trilogy was disappointed by this installment.

To be fair I must admit that the directing, editing, cinematography and the majority of the other filming aspects were generally not bad, and meet the standard of general Hollywood blockbuster films. This then leads me to believe that the main cause for the film’s failure was the writing. This is because the plot falls flat, the climax is disappointing, there are random funny moments in the film that you can’t make out whether or not are intentional, which removes you from the so-called horror movie you’re meant to be watching, and finally, for some reason, Sidney refuses to die. I must stress this last point – it is not just in this article for comedic effect – she really just won’t die. She runs into Ghostface on numerous occasions and where police officers and other men have died she manages to fight her way out, or better yet when she can’t fight her way out, she ends up being attacked but then survives the following day.

It’s as if the writers of this film couldn’t decide whether or not it was going to be a horror flick, a dark comedy or a superhero movie.

As far as the acting is concerned we are stuck with average to below average acting talent returning to the franchise such as Cox, her ex-husband Arquette as well as Campbell.

The actors with real acting talent from the original franchise, such as Jamie Kennedy, Liev Schreiber and Timothy Olyphant simply don’t feature. If this isn’t enough to tell you what the movie is like then the fact that several actors were attached to the film but dropped out will.

Critics around the world have had mixed reviews about Scream 4 with the general consensus being an average of 5 out of 10, however, no critic was singing this film’s praises and for good reason.

My final thoughts on the film are that it is, simply put, a bad movie. The originals were also bad but had aspects to them that kept you involved from start to finish, which is the very least that you would want from a movie, but this film couldn’t even do that, so I’d call it a sheer and utter disappointment that should be avoided by everyone.

Staring: Courteney Cox, Neve Campbell and David Arquette

Directed by: Wes Craven

Rating: 1 out of 5

Source: www.bizpremises.co.za