Directors: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett
Cast: Melissa Barrera, Jenna Ortega, Jack Quaid
Release Date: April 5, 2022
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 7/10
Disc Rating: 7.5/10
Twenty-five years after a streak of brutal murders shocked the quiet town of Woodsboro, a terrifying new killer resurrects the Ghostface mask. As the deaths mount, Woodsboro’s new targets must seek help from the survivors of the original Ghostface attacks. Now, only Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), former sheriff Dewey Riley (David Arquette), and reporter Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) can find a way to stop the killer when everyone is a suspect. The film also stars Melissa Barrera, Mason Gooding, Jenna Ortega, Jack Quaid, and Marley Shelton.
Please Note: Paramount Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray I reviewed in this Post. The opinions I share are my own.
The new ‘Scream’ returns viewers to Woodsboro twenty-five years after the initial killings shocked the town as a new killer ignites a fresh killing spree that seems to have deeper connections to the original murders. As the body count begins to pile up anew and a group of tight-knit high school students in the middle of it all attempts to unlock the mystery while staying alive long enough to do so, it soon becomes apparent that stopping this killer will require these fresh faces to join forces with original survivors Sidney, Gale and Dewey if they’re to sand any chance of ending the bloodshed before the new Ghostface finishes what they started.
Directed this time around by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett (Ready or Not) from a screenplay written by James Vanderbilt (Zodiac) and Guy Busick (Ready or Not), Bettinelli-Olpin and Gillett do a pretty fantastic job at the helm of the new ‘Scream’ guiding along the fun and thrills with a clear appreciation of the franchise. The film also benefits from a well selected cast comprised of new and returning individuals including Melissa Barrera (In The Heights), Mason Gooding (Booksmart), Jenna Ortega (X), Jack Quaid (TV’s The Boys), Jasmin Savoy Brown (TV’s Yellowjackets), Dylan Minnette (TV’s 13 Reasons Why), Marley Shelton (Scream 4), Courteney Cox (Scream 3), David Arquette (Scream 2) and Neve Campbell (Scream) along with more, the majority offering solid and fitting performances in each of their respective roles for the most part.
The new ‘Scream’ film is a bloody, humorous and fairly clever continuation of the franchise that repeatedly shows its love of the previous films as well as paying homage to director Wes Craven who helmed every entry prior to this one. The love that the Radio Silence filmmaking team and everyone else involved has for the series is quite apparent throughout and all of the meta fun, over the top craziness and bloody killings remain surprisingly faithful to its predecessors, while still contributing some new twists, surprises and smart tidbits that help keep it relatively fresh. As someone that’s also a massive fan of the franchise since I first had the pleasure of seeing the first film as a teenager and became immediately hooked, I can’t say it’s my favorite sequel, but it’s also far from the worst (I certainly can’t be the only one still disappointed by Scream 3) and any other fans of the series should thoroughly appreciate how much care they put into getting it right, and in most ways they succeed admirably.
Diehard ‘Scream’ fans might notice some potential clashes with the previous films such as what seems like contradictions about the Stab films (one example being that Scream 4 mentioned that they stopped using Sidney’s story after Stab 3 because of a threatened lawsuit while Scream 2022 mentions her character being in the first 7) but never in a manner that overpowers or ruins the film by any means. The legacy characters also aren’t provided quite as much screen time as many fans might prefer although their absence earlier on actually helps to make the story work better in many ways and while some of the surprising turns within might slightly anger some (I won’t get into specifics in order to avoid full on spoilers) it’s also hard to argue their effectiveness. The new cast as well as the story plays out quite splendidly albeit somewhat predictable at times, with more nods and throwbacks to the original than expected, while still never ignoring the three sequels that came after it (especially with some rewarding Easter eggs throughout). I would definitely encourage fans of the franchise to make a definite point of checking out the new ‘Scream’ at your earliest convenience if you haven’t already had the pleasure. It’s a surprisingly good sequel that never forgets its roots but also isn’t afraid to take chances and bring something at least relatively smart and new to the table.
Overall, the new ‘Scream’ is a fun, fast paced and faithful follow-up with plenty of solid kills and surprises throughout. ‘Scream’ is definitely recommended, especially for dedicated fans of this beloved slasher franchise who should all find a lot to appreciate about this latest entry from the nods to its predecessors to the clever new turns and various homages paying respect to Craven with a meta style that couldn’t be more fitting for ‘Scream’. If you haven’t yet had a chance to check it out, I would strongly urge you to rent it (or watch on Paramount+ where it’s currently streaming for subscribers at no additional cost) but don’t be too surprised if you end up wanting to purchase it soon thereafter; as someone who is also a dedicated fan of this series I can honestly say I’m still enjoying it a great deal after three viewings (or technically four if you include one with the audio commentary track enabled).
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of ‘Scream’ features a full 2160p Ultra High Definition presentation with Dolby Vision and HDR-10, presented in its original 2.39:1 Cinemascope Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks pretty great as a whole and delivers a thoroughly sharp, clean and wonderfully detailed presentation from start to finish that’s boosted with rich, deep blacks and vibrant colors across the board and never suffering from any unexpected issues along the way. It holds up impressively even during the various darkly lit and fast moving moments and the Dolby Vision addition only improves upon nearly every aspect, serving up a gorgeous color grading that looks spectacular every step of the way. Overall, this is a rewarding and solid 4K ultra high definition video presentation with Dolby Vision/HDR-10 that should largely thrill fans and newcomers alike.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release features a 7.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. While some may be disappointed by the absence of a Dolby Atmos soundtrack offering, this multichannel DTS-HD MA soundtrack still offers a largely enjoyable audio presentation that’s crisp, clean and at times notably immersive. It consistently takes advantage of all seven available channels in order to send music, along with some crowd chatter, action effects and more throughout the various speakers while always making certain that any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously remain clean and fully audible. There are a couple minor moments throughout where the placement feels slightly off (such as a few engine revs around twenty minutes in, a couple of which seem to come from the front channels instead of the back rear during quick perspective shifts) but for the most part it delivers quite well. Overall, this is a quite capable and active 7.1 DTS-HD MA soundtrack that should largely satisfy.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of ‘Scream’ includes some worthwhile extras that fans of the new film should enjoy. Included on the release is an ‘Audio Commentary with the Filmmakers including directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, Writer/Producer James Vanderbilt, writer Guy Busick and executive producer Chad Villella’, in addition to some ‘Deleted Scenes’ from the film (running approximately 3 minutes in length altogether). We are also treated to a few Behind the Scenes Featurettes that feature interviews/comments with the cast and crew, plus behind the scenes footage and more. The included Featurettes are ‘New Blood’ (running approximately 7 minutes), ‘Bloodlines’ (approximately 8 minutes) and ‘In the Shadow of the Master’ (7 minutes). The new trailer for ‘Scream 1996’ is also included (1 minute).
*Please note: The above images were provided by Paramount and are not reflective of the actual 4K Ultra HD release or its quality. A standard Blu-ray copy of the film was not included in the release that could be used for screenshots therefore the above publicity stills were utilized. They are all the property of Paramount, Spyglass and any other respective owners.
Film Rating: 7/10
Disc Rating: 7.5/10
‘Scream’ (2022) Arrives Home on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray & DVD April 5, 2022 & is Now Available on Digital from Spyglass Media Group & Paramount Home Entertainment
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