As I was planning my blind spot picks for 2018 I wanted to challenge myself with a few picks and step outside my comfort zone. And no pick did that as much as this month’s pick Scream. Directed by Wes Craven, Scream has become an iconic slasher film which went on to inspire 3 sequels and the Scary Movie spoof series.
One of the interesting things about Scream is it is not just a scary movie but it is a critique of the horror genre. There are many references throughout the movie both visually and in the script to classic horror franchises like Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, and Halloween. Unfortunately since I am a newbie to the genre a lot of the references were lost on me, but I can see why many fans really enjoyed them.
The story to Scream is simple. A man in a scream mask (called Ghostface) is calling teens, talking to them in an increasingly chilling manner and then stabbing them with a knife. Most people are probably most alarmed by the killings in the movie, but to me, the phone calls were the creepiest part. It is especially chilling in an opening scene with Drew Barrymore when the caller is giving her movie trivia to keep her and her boyfriend alive. That was pretty scary!
Most of the violence is done with a wink and isn’t especially scary. It’s more meant to be fun and silly. It’s not the kind of thing I am going to get nightmares of because it is very over-the-top.
Neve Campbell plays a girl named Sidney who is hesitant to give up her virginity because of her Mother being murdered (and raped I think) a year earlier. Her boyfriend Billy struggles with her choice but seems to respect it. There is also a sheriff (David Arquette), a reporter (Courtney Cox), a principal (Henry Winkler) and friends (Matthew Lillard, Rose McGowan, Jamie Kennedy, and more).
The last act of Scream is a bit chaotic for my liking. I prefer the opening scene with Drew Barrymore over the messiness. It’s much scarier when tension has time to build and bubble up until you can’t help but respond. The never-ending mayhem gets tired even as it is increasing in violence. The only thing that really creeped me out (or grossed me out) in the last part is a death involving a garage door.
But that said, Scream is an enjoyable film that doesn’t take itself too seriously. It has a winking sensibility to it and while I think I would enjoy it more if I knew what the jokes were referencing it still was a fun enough ride.
Of course, Scream is rated R so it won’t be for everyone but if you are up for a light-hearted slasher movie (such a weird description but it’s true) than this is the movie for you! I’m glad I saw it even if I don’t think I’d ever watch it again. Always good to get out of your comfort zone!
Have any of you seen Scream? What do you think of it and its sequels?
4 thoughts on “Blind Spot 34: Scream”
My wife and I went and saw this in the theaters somewhere around our one year anniversary. Sure that dates us a bit but we had a lot of fun with it. I have seen it again since but it has been a while.
I did like the ending. You think you knew who the killer was but then there’s that twist… There wasn’t a motive? There was? Oh how it played with my mind 😀
What’s funny about you saying the violence didn’t give you nightmares or anything is that back when my sister was younger she begged my parents to let her watch it and watched the entire thing under a blanket. Naturally I didn’t see it until years later as young adult and having seen many other horror movies so I’ve always thought ‘really, she watched THIS under a blanket?’ lol I find it a really enjoyable movie and I think it has this nice mix of pure fun with some well-balanced smarts as well as some humor and lightness mixed in with murder, horror, and darkness that it’s really the kinda well-balanced (for me at least) movie I tend to go for more than most other movies, and more like something I would really make than a lot of other things. I enjoy the other sequels and it’s one of the few horror franchises were even my least favorite (in this case the third one for me) has merit and is watchable for me and trust me, considering there’s a Friday the 13th and Halloween movie or two that’s a chore for me to sit through that’s high praise! lol
Scream is a true masterpiece for me! It’s a great horror movie, and it’s the perfect homage to the horror/slasher genre… in fact, I wrote about the whole saga here, if you want to have a look!