If you combine all of the three previous Scream movies you will not see as much blood as in Scre4m, it’s a sanguinary feast. The strongly violent film makes Scream 2 and 3 look like kiddy shows. If you are into films that make your cringe, flinch and urge your dinner to come up, then this fourth edition of the famous Scream will do the trick.
This time we find Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) coming back to Woodsboro on the day and place where the murders in Scream were committed some 15 years earlier. She’s there to do a signing of her book on self-help. Dewey (David Arquette) has become Sheriff of the small town and is happily married to Sidney’s arch nemesis Gale (Courteney Cox)… as you know Dewey and Gale got engaged at the end of Scream 3. It’s an unwelcome homecoming for Sidney and most of the town, including her close relatives feels an air of danger. When high school kids start dropping like flies from violent stabbings, everyone becomes terrified of a possible slaughter at the hands of Ghostface.
Although the film does include some comic relief from Sheriff Dewey’s blunders the realism of the stabbings however, instills chills and a nightmarish feeling that lingers far after the move ends. Craven leaves not one of his central characters without a stab wound in this killer thriller. Superb special effects, barrels of blood, lifelike sounds of the knife cutting into the body and realistic makeup bring out the horror that director Wes Craven expects from his visual crew.
The film’s storyline isn’t much, but neither were the other three. I must admit, though that this chiller tops the list of the Scream quartet for acting, bloodletting, suspense and unpredictability. And, it’s a shrewd release time from the master of gore especially since his audience following has nothing out there to compare. It’s the film that asks, “What’s your favorite scary movie?”
Scream fans will get their refill of Campbell, Cox and Arquette with a little cherry topping of Emma Roberts (as cousin Jill) and Hayden Panettiere (as Jill’s best friend) thrown in for good measure. The cast is really up for this one and they really put on a good show.
Scre4m is rated R for strong bloody violence, language and some teen drinking. The film features gory scenes and some brutality so caution is suggested when being asked by any of your under 17 year olds if you can take them to see the film.
FINAL ANALYSIS: Take a stab at Scre4m only if you’re ready for a fright. (B)