The most terrifying and brilliant self-referential slasher universe
When I heard the icon Scream Franchise should be revived with last year’s for a new generation Scream and the new scream VI, I was beside myself. I started, “Did you hear Ghostface is back?” accidentally struck up a conversation only to come across confused allusions Scary movieor an incredulous “You are quiet who do?” It became increasingly clear that the four originals Scream Movies – released between 1996 and 2011 and centered around a series of murders in the fictional town of Woodsboro, California – don’t hold as much weight in the collective consciousness as they do in my own.
I was introduced to the franchise when I was still in the single digits by a totally irresponsible babysitter who made me stay up and watch Drew Barrymore being sliced and diced, leaving me haunted but hungry for more. In contrast, Scream Director Wes Craven was raised to believe that movies are the work of the devil and didn’t see a non-Disney movie until college, when he risked being expelled from school to hitchhike to a movie theater in the drive near his ultra-religious university. I guess the moral of the story is don’t limit your child’s media consumption or they’ll double down and one day unleash the most terrifying and brilliant self-referential slasher universe the world has ever seen.
ScreamThe most defining trait of is its confidence, which immediately distinguishes it from its iconic slasher predecessors such as Halloween And Friday the 13th. Several characters are horror film fans who provide meta-comments about the sick and twisted nature of teenagers who watch other teenagers being massacred on screen for fun.
During a film marathon Scream’His movie best brother, Randy Meeks (Jamie Kennedy), lays down the rules for surviving a horror movie for his peers: “Number one, you must never have sex. Big no no! Sex equals death, okay? Number two: you must never drink or do drugs (the sin factor)… And number three: never, ever, never, under any circumstances say, ‘I’ll be right back!’”
This is just one of many examples of Craven and screenwriter Kevin Williamson’s ability to poke fun at the often predictable and goofy nature of teen slasher movies while making an incredibly satisfying contribution to the field. The vibe is, “We’re going to scare you, make you think about why you enjoy being scared and what that says about you and our sick society, while making you laugh.” In short, they just get it!
As the films play on deep-rooted fears of an unknown assailant terrorizing an otherwise peaceful suburb, the killers are repeatedly revealed to be people close to the central protagonist, Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell). On the upper floor ScreamShortly after Sidney makes the rookie mistake of having sex with her dreamy boyfriend Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich), he and his sidekick Stu Macher (Matthew Lillard) are revealed to be the murderous culprits. While Stu cites “peer pressure” as the reason for the murder, Billy was furious at his family’s breakdown following an affair between Sidney’s mother and father.
With each sequel, the killers and their motivations get crazier and crazier. In scream 2Billy’s mother disguises herself as a journalist and teams up with a random movie buff to avenge her son’s death scream 3 And scream 4 Feature plot twists involving Sidney’s long-lost half-brother/jealous cousin. Family dynamics are always complicated, but Sidney really can’t take a break! Aside from being delightfully absurd, the killers’ motives are in touch with current affairs. For example, Billy’s mother is furious at how the media blames parents for their children’s crimes, which was topical in the ’90s amid rising fears of teenage violence. Regardless, the prospect of your insane ex-boyfriend’s mother plotting to kill you is far scarier than, say, an attacker with knives for his fingers (Freddy Krueger) or a psychotic babysitter-hunter with obscure motives (Michael Myers).