Scream

Scream ★★★½

The first two films in the "Scream" series are so sacred to me in forming my love of horror. So there was a defensiveness I felt to them when I saw a fifth one was being made without the mind of Wes Craven. It felt like a stupid cash grab that won't have any of the meta sophistication. But as I watched it I realized the narrative was making fun of punks like me and acidic fan boys who don't get their way and I just laughed. The movie got me and I got the joke. That's the miracle of "Scream 2022" it still knows how to make this franchise push the right buttons.
I don't know why I doubted Bettinelli-Olpin and Gillet after they made one of my favorite movies of the past 5 years "Ready or Not." They understand how to mix effective humor with well time horror. Plus they know when to sparse out the legacy character so they don't take away from the new ones. Believe it or not they got me to care about the victims this time around.
The best new addition to the ever growing list of characters has to be Jenna Ortega as Tarra. Not only do I think she's one of the best actresses under 25 but she is one of the best actresses to join "Scream" in a long time. She gets two great scenes that show off her talents and had me on the edge of my seat worried for her. I never felt that with the basic kills in 3 or 4.
This was one of those "re-quels" that didn't get away from those involved. The meta commentary landed while still paying respect to that which followed. I think Wes would've been proud of this entry. Not because his standards really dropped in his later years but because he wouldn't want the series going in any other direction.

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