Scream ★★★★½

Hoop-Tober 2015! (10/31):

"There are certain RULES that one must abide by in order to successfully survive a horror movie. For instance, number one: you can never have sex."
[crowd boos]
" BIG NO NO! BIG NO NO! Sex equals death, okay? Number two: you can never drink or do drugs."
[crowd cheers and raises their bottles]
"The sin factor! It's a sin. It's an extension of number one. And number three: never, ever, ever under any circumstances say, "I'll be right back." Because you won't be back."
"I'm gettin' another beer, you want one?"
" Yeah, sure."
"I'll be right back."
[crowd cheers]
"See, you push the laws and you end up dead. Okay, I'll see you in the kitchen with a knife."

My first exposure to the Scream franchise came oddly through MTV's intriguing but flawed Scream series (which is currently available on Netflix UK, if you're interested), but it defiently piqued my interest in going back and watching the original movies from the master of horror, Wes Craven. Scream itself is one of my favourite movies that I've seen in the genre to date, offering a delightfully meta horror film that shouldn't work out as well as it does, with one of the characters so self aware of the genre stating that they don't want to be killed because they want to be in the sequel. The film itself addresses the rules of the horror genre, which come more and more into the picture as the bodycount of teenagers begins rising, victims of a mysterious killer named Ghostface.

The cast is solid. The likes of Neve Campbell and David Arquette put in pretty good performances and Wes Craven is on top form in the directing seat, with this film being the first movie that I've seen from the director. Based on the strength of this movie it most certainly won't be the last, because it's pulled off incredibly well. It's tense, it blends horror and comedy together so well in a way that a recent watch, John Dies at the End, failed to do so. It feels more in line with Cabin in the Woods in the way that it addresses what works and what doesn't about the horror genre, weaving a compelling, engaging plot that will have you engaged from the beginning to the end.

An absolutely essential viewing for horror fans, and despite being made in 1996, it still holds up very well, offering plenty of scary moments. You'll struggle to find many horror movies better than this.

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