Scream (2022) – The fifth original
It seems like the horror film genre is obsessed with sequels, reboots, and spin-offs. We’ve seen this with franchises like Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, Saw, and The Conjuring universe. Each of the listed franchises hold a minimum of seven sequels and some are continuing, even still. Much like its genre companions, the Scream franchise recently extended, a full 11 years after the previous film. In January of 2022, Scream (super confusing, why not just call it Scream 5 to follow previous patterns?) hit the big screen. The franchise began in 1996 with Scream, starring Neve Campbell, Courtney Cox, David Arquette, Drew Barrymore, and several other well-known actors. Today, the film is known as a classic “slasher” movie. The plot followed main character, Sidney Prescott, and her unfortunate involvement with the Ghostface killer. The movie was successful; thus, audiences received Scream 2, Scream 3, Scream 4, and now Scream (see how that’s confusing?). Plus, in 2016 MTV released a television show with a similar premise, also called Scream (that’s just too much now). So, fast forward to January of 2022 and the fifth sequel in the franchise is released. This time, the film followed a teenage girl (sound familiar) and her run-ins with Ghostface. The family, much closer to the original series than it seems, seek out the advice of some of the original characters from 25 years ago. Much like the franchise’s other sequels, this movie presents the idea of “the original.” Scream 3 Is about the fictional franchise Stab, based on the “real-life” Sidney and the murders that took place in the first film. Scream 4 has film-nerd characters, obsessed with the first Stab and how closely the “real-life” tragedies in the Scream move follow the *fictional* movie, Stab. It’s kind of confusing and definitely convoluted, but this idea that Sidney and her friends are “the original” characters, story, plot, etc. is prevalent throughout most of the series. This newest film is no exception, though it seems way more obsessed with the original than any other. Perhaps that’s why it shares the same title. So, how was it? How many times can we see the same thing over, and over again? Well, I guess ask Halloween, or Friday the 13th. Honestly, I was entertained the entire time I watched the movie. Plot was decent enough, though recycled, the new characters had some appeal, and seeing how the “originals” would fit was interesting. But overall, I wasn’t a fan. The film featured unnecessary deaths for shock value, similar plot points, and even the exact same settings. While it was okay, I hope we can leave this series alone now. If you love the series and need to see how it “ends”, maybe check it out, but if any of the previous sequels were already enough to bother you, I’d suggest skipping this one.