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(1996)

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10/10
The best teenage horror slasher film in the 90's my all time personal favorite in the horror genre
ivo-cobra818 February 2018
Scream is the best teenage horror slasher film in the 90's and it is my all time personal favorite film in the horror genre. I love this film I always did and I love to death! It was really the first movie that introduced me in to "horror" genre slasher films. It was directed from my favorite horror master Wes Craven and written by Kevin Williamson. It is a horror mystery like was Friday the 13th and April Fool's Day. Scream deserve legendary status. The movie spawned three sequels and the TV series that I did like. Neve Campbell, David Arquette and Courteney Cox and Rose McGowan work for me. It is about a high school teenage student in the fictional town of Woodsboro, California, who becomes the target of a mysterious killer known as Ghostface who kills teens and who uses his obsession with scary movies. The first one is the best in the series and it is still one of the best horror films of all time.

Wes Craven borrowed and used Halloween, Friday the 13th and A Nightmare On Elm Street mostly scenes for this movie. It mentions a lot of cult classic horror movies and till it's day it is still praised by fans. I enjoy this film I always do. This is my movie and my personal opinion! Scream follows the teenage girl Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) who becomes targeted by a psychotic killer dressed in a ghostface mask who uses his obsession with scary movies. David Arquette plays police deputy, Dewey Riley who helps protect Sidney and Courtney Cox plays tabloid reporter, Gale Weathers. This is one of Craven's best along with "A Nightmare on Elm Street" that redefined the genre and Ghostface has become another popular slasher since. "What's Your Favorite Scary Movie?" Ghostface is one of the most popular and really scary character. The mask is so scary before new year on Halloween day I saw the mask putted on a front seat in the car and i was so scared, I thought it was the killer waiting on me but it was only a mask but a scary one.

The Story begins after two high school students are murdered by the serial killer. Sidney Prescott becomes next victim of intelligent serial killer, Gale Weathers reporter and journalist is shure that serial killer is the same person who murdered Sidney's mother one year ago and now he's terrorizing Sidney her self. Deputy Sheriff Dewey wants to investigate the murders by himself, but attractive Gale seduced and confused him, so it's up to Sidney to find the killer, before he kills again to find the truth, she will must kill. I love also the characters: Matthew Lillard as Stu Macher, Rose McGowan as Tatum Riley and Jamie Kennedy as Randy Meeks. Great story and great soundtracks. I watch this movie thirty times and is still the best, I watch with my mom as a teen good times. I love the script the dialogues in this movie, I love Drew Barrymore as Casey Becker in here.

10/10 Scream deserves a legendary status it is my personal favorite horror slasher film from Wes Craven in the franchise. I have the whole collection on Blu-ray discs and I have the first three movies on VHS tapes. I love this film to death I love it!
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8/10
Hate To Admit It, But It's Great
MadReviewer9 May 2001
There's more than a few reasons to hate `Scream'; the main reason would be that the film single-handedly resurrected the teen-slasher genre, a movie category that had long been beaten to death. Because of the success of `Scream', witless horror crap like `I Know What You Did Last Summer' and `Urban Legend' got greenlighted, half the teenage casts of various WB television shows got summer acting jobs, and some awful scripts that should've been left dead and buried `Teaching Mrs. Tingle' got to see the light of day. `Scream' is responsible for a lot of garbage. But the truth of the matter is, `Scream' is also a phenomenal movie.

The plot of `Scream' is very simple: a masked knife-wielding maniac is busy stalking the students of High, killing them off one by one. The killer's inordinately obsessed with one girl, Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), who of course gets involved in the quest to unmask the killer. The catch (in case you don't already know it), though, is brilliant. Everyone in the film is familiar with all the slasher film conventions. They know that you shouldn't walk in the woods alone at night. They know that having wild sex is an unwritten invitation to be hacked to pieces. They know not to say things to each other like `I'm going outside for a cigarette; I'll be right back.' -- such statements are virtual death warrants. One of the best examples (and best characters) of this is Randy (Jamie Kennedy), the film-obsessed nut of the film, who actually goes so far as to muse what `real' actors and actresses should play the other characters in the film, going so far as to joke about who gets to be Tori Spelling. All the dumb conventions of slasher films are pulled out of the shadows, exposed for what they really are . . . and then, some of them get used anyway, because the characters willingly choose to ignore those conventions. Some cliches are thrown away, while others are embraced. `Scream' really turned the horror/slasher film genre on its ear, becoming the first truly suspenseful and exciting slasher film in many, many years simply because it suddenly had a million new avenues to explore. The film's self-awareness allowed to move in brand-new directions . . . and suddenly, scenes that used to be predictable in other slasher films suddenly become incredibly intense in `Scream'.

Director Wes Craven was perfect for this film -- as director of slasher classics like `Nightmare On Elm Street', he easily sets the visual feels and style of film to perfect evoke all the slasher films of yore . . . and then, much like `Scream's' script, chooses to either faithfully follow the tried and true, or to go off in competely unexpected directions. Either way, Craven manages to create a lot of absolutely nail-biting, thrilling scenes. He also doesn't hold back with the gore, which is always a plus in great slasher films. The acting ranges from barely mediocre to good -- Neve Campbell's okay as Sidney; Courtney Cox is pretty good as tart-tongued reporter Gail Weathers; Jamie Kennedy rules as Randy the film geek; and David Arquette is utterly bland and forgettable as Deputy Dewey Riley, the sad-sack policeman. But casts in slasher films don't particularly matter anyway; the good ones are all about suspense, terror, and gore. And in `Scream', Wes Craven provides massive amounts of all three of those criteria.

The irony is, `Scream' spawned dozens of imitators, and by spawning imitators, all the new avenues opened up by `Scream' quickly got old and boring once more. Still, purely on its own merit, it's an excellent film. The best slasher film of all time is still John Carpenter's `Halloween', without question, but `Scream' actually runs a close second. It's well worth watching. Grade: A-
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8/10
Iconic, unique, fresh, a definitive new horror
Mr_PCM27 February 2006
Scream With the countless number of teen slasher movies doing the rounds, it is too easy to watch scream and see simply another school serial killer movie that has just rolled off the factory production line. However, it was Wes Craven's 'Scream' that started the whole revival of the horror genre and re-invented the teen horror. Through no fault of its own, but rather a succession of bland rip-offs, not to mention a very successful spoof (Scary Movie), Scream's original impact has been severely dulled. Were Scream released today it would no doubt be moderately successful but would be instantly forgettable. But back in 1996 the teen horror market was wide open. The teenagers of the 90s were bored of traditional horror movies featuring haunted houses, vampires or deformed monsters. They had seen them all. So Wes Craven, having reinvigorated the horror genre once before with 'Nightmare on Elm Street', set out to do it again. This time, along with Kevin Williamson, who would go on to be creator of Dawson's Creek, created a new kind of horror – one that you could laugh at as well as scream at.

What made Scream so successful is that it was never patronising, and displayed a strong sense of ironic self-awareness. It took every horror cliché in the book and turned them upside down. For the kids that had seen too many movies, there was now a movie for them. The characters did not follow the clichés, but in fact talked about them, and talked about what would happen if they were in a movie. This sense of irony may seem tired now, but when Scream came out it was new and exciting. There was rarely a need to scream 'don't go upstairs' or suchlike in Scream, because the characters themselves were saying that! The idea of the killer being amongst the students adds a fresh dimension to the film, as fear gives way to paranoia at not being able to trust anyone. The subversions of the accepted horror clichés, in particular in the opening ten minutes (I'm not going to give anything away for those who have not seen it) also contribute to making Scream a truly shocking movie. It was this sense of innovation that made Scream such a breath of fresh air for the horror genre, and it is only a shame that Craven's genius has been ripped off so many times that his work has dated far too quickly. Craven and Williamson have also created a new horror star – but it was not a particular character but just a costume with an iconic mask. The Scream mask has become just as symbolic, perhaps even more so, than that of Michael Myers or Jason Vorhees.

For any serious horror movie fans, Scream is essential viewing, if only to witness the film that started it all. The 'movie within a movie' idea was terrific, and would be taken even further in the sequel. The frequent references to classic horror movies, and reversals of accepted horror clichés, especially in the opening ten minutes) are also fun to watch out for. There is even a wonderful moment where one boy climbs in the bedroom window of his girlfriend – a scene that would be taken and used as one of the foundation for Williamson's successful teen series Dawson's Creek.

The iconic mask, the one-liners, and the unique self-awareness when it comes to horror clichés make Scream a true original – accept no imitations.
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Scary, funny and clever – the best Scream movie by miles
bob the moo1 April 2002
Almost a year after someone raped and killed Sidney Prescott's mother in the small town of Woodsboro, someone is killing teenagers. When Sidney herself becomes a target, the link is apparent and her missing father is a suspect. However, as with all good scary movies, everyone is a suspect.

The film that sparked the revival of horror movies (Halloween H2O, I know what you did last summer, Urban Legend etc all followed…..thanks a lot!). This stands out from all those (and it's lackluster sequels) by being really good and clever. The story is nothing more than the standard slasher plot – but it avoids the cliches quite well. In fact it uses the cliches as references and makes plenty of jokey references to other movies and the supposed rules of horror movies – we even have a quick flash of a caretaker dressed in Freddy's jumper and hat!

That doesn't mean it's not scary – it is! From the tragically horrible opening 10 minutes through each gory killing the tension is high and the shocks are real. The plot twists nicely and the ending is much better than most slasher movies (including the absurd endings of 2 and 3). This manages to be fresh, clever and scary – getting by any sticking moments with it's tongue in it's cheek.

The cats are good – Campbell is a believable virgin, scarred by what happened to her mother – before she starts turning into Buffy the vampire slayer in parts 2 and 3. Cox is excellent playing against type and David Arquette is funny as the Deputy Sheriff. Kennedy as Randy is also funny as the movie geek – in fact he remains the highlight of the next 2 films. The cast being filled of up and coming faces (including Ulrich) makes it even more thrilling when the `wrong' people get killed, technically all the cast are `unknowns' who usually make up the body count, so really anyone can potentially get offed.

Overall funny black comedy, scary thrills and gory excitement. A rare treat – a really good teen horror movie
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10/10
It's a scream that they made something this original!
Kristine13 August 2002
In 1996, when I saw this in the theater, I was expecting to see a predictable movie. That we would just get bored with. But I was wrong. This has to be one of the most clever movies of the 90's. Believe me, this was an awesome thriller. Wes Craven should stick to movies like this,

It had a wonderful cast. Funny lines. Scary moments. Classic horror scenes that will keep you at the edge of your seat. A movie that you'll rewind and want to watch again and again. And after the 50th time you watch it, you'll say, just one more time.

So, if you have good taste, or are looking for something original, watch this film. And get the trilogy DVD set. It's a screamer!

10/10
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8/10
Clever, scary and funny - a must-see for horror fans
Max_cinefilo8913 April 2007
Making a brilliant, original horror film is pretty hard these days, since practically everything has already been told, and more than once. Using that premise, director Wes Craven and screenwriter Kevin Williamson came up with Scream, whose cleverness derives from the fact that it knows every single stereotype of the genre and satirizes them.

Take the opening sequence, for example: a young girl (Drew Barrymore) is making popcorn and waiting for her boyfriend when she suddenly receives a phone call. Normally, this would be a huge clichè, only this time the killer decides to play a little game (horror film quiz, naturally) with his victim. In fact, the only reason why he kills her is that she gave the wrong answer to one of his questions (those who haven't seen Friday 13th might want to skip that bit, as it spoils said movie's ending). That scene is both very scary (the murder is quite graphic and disturbing) and at the same time funny (it tests the characters', and the audience's, knowledge of the horror genre), and the rest of the film continues in the same vein: after the first killing, the masked psychopath starts disposing of other teenagers in the town of Woodsboro using the same technique. One of the targets is Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), whose mother was raped and killed the year before. This implies the killer might be the same, but who could it be? Sidney's distant father? Her mother's lover (Liev Schreiber)? Or some random guy, with no motive at all?

Fortunately, it is not the last category: this murderer has a motive and a plausible identity as well. But it isn't the payoff that makes Scream interesting; it's how Craven and Williamson get to it, by outlining the genre's conventions (some of which were actually invented by the director himself) and using them in a clever, if self-referential, way. The point of the movie is, the more you know of this kind of films (pay attention to the rules, stated by geeky film buff Randy), the more chances you have to survive (although you must take into account that the killer has seen the same movies). The in-jokes that would ruin other films are the very cause of Scream's success, with memorable scenes such as the villain mimicking the movie his victims are watching or Craven's unmissable cameo as a janitor wearing Freddy Krueger's outfit (not to mention priceless lines like "Movies don't create psychos, movies make psychos more creative!").

In other words, Scream is a smart, effective horror film, which manages to amuse and scare in equal measures. Definitely worth watching, even if the two sequels (especially Scream 3) don't really match the original's intelligence and, forgive the expression, originality.
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Thrilling, refreshing horror tale
freakstar6718 April 2000
Watching this film for the first time in the basement of a four story house, with no-one else in was the perfect setting for this film. From the very first scene I was gripped and I could not wait for the climax to discover the murderer and his motives. The script was extremely original, as they had purposely set out to parodie the typical slasher style movie.

It was written in a way that deceived and tricked and had you jumping out of your seats but also laughing at the paradoxical black humour. For anyone looking for a good horror film with a twist, you won't find a better one than Scream.

Overall I give it 9.5/10
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10/10
"Scream" does not seem like the kind of...
survivor16 August 1998
"Scream" does not seem like the kind of movie that could make you appreciate American cinema. If you haven't seen it, then you're probably viewing it as just another silly slasher flick that creates more laughs than scares. On the contrary. This movie IS filled with plenty of scares and satirizes the horror genre in a way that literally has turned this film into a masterpiece. I guarantee you that while you may not love it (it nearly was rated NC-17 for its intense violence), you'll be highly amused by this one. A-
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10/10
Leave it to Wes to create a good scare...
the_moody_youngest17 December 2006
This film would have to be the scariest movie I have ever seen. Great acting, highly original plot, and interesting characters. This film also had a great script. Not that lame, typical horror film. This film was unpredictably scary. My friends were covering their eyes, but I wasn't, even though this movie scared the crap out of me! Neve Cambell was surprisingly impressive and I loved her character, Sydney, so strong willed.

If you want a good Friday evening scare with friends, Scream is an excellent rental. I would make some popcorn but put it aside whenever the phone rings in the film because you might end up spilling popcorn all over the place.

Scream Report Card:

Acting A+ Script A+ Scares A+ Characters A+

Final Grade: A+
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9/10
One of the scariest slasher movies ever made--one of the years best films. ***1/2 out of ****
Movie-1224 December 1999
SCREAM (1996) ***1/2

Starring: Neve Campbell, David Arquette, Courteney Cox, Matthew Lillard, Rose McGowan, Skeet Ulrich, Liev Schreiber, Drew Barrymore, and Henry Winkler Director: Wes Craven Running time: 111 minutes Rated R (for strong grizzly violence and gore, language, and some sexuality)

By Blake French:

"Scream" is the mother of all teen slasher films. From the opening sequence to the somewhat silly closing cliffhanger, it is one of the scariest productions of the past several years. Now, about the opening sequence, it features a penetrating Drew Barrymore receiving prank phone calls from a man with a deep, mysterious voice, who becomes more and more conversationally aggressive as they talk. "What's your name--because I want to know who I'm looking at." After building up some very effective momentum, the scene has a heart-stopping climatic payoff that isn't only pointless gore, but terrifying suspense. It is moments like these that make "Scream" one of the best movies of 1996.

"Scream" centers on a high school girl named Sidney Prescott, a modestly productive young woman who spends much of her time alone and with her boyfriend, Billy. She is approaching the anniversary of her mother's murder, whose killer has been convicted and sentenced to death. Sydney's school is in the process of mourning the brutal murder of two fellow classmates, and the pupils aren't exactly sympathetic.

One night Sidney is home alone, and receives a phone call similar to the one in the opening scene. Sidney is tormented in that call, and after an exchange of a few unfriendly words, attacked by a dark individual wearing a white ghost mask. She fights him off, however, and lives another day, much in regard to the mysterious appearance of her boyfriend and a young, squeamish cop named Dewy.

The presentation of Sidney's life is not one-dimensional. The overlook on her schooling experiences, classmates, relatives, friends, and teachers are all believable. Strongly supporting the character are the details and sub-characters.

It is nearly impossible to watch "Scream" without making a list of assumed suspects to the numerous killings that take place. Here is my prediction list of murderer suspects, not telling who, if anyone, is the correct guess:

· Dewy, the young police officer who suspiciously shows up at nearly every crime scene, and has somewhat of a psycho personality.

· Sidney's boyfriend, Billy, who is actually sent to prison for a short period of time after being accused as a prime suspect. He also appears at a crime site unexpectedly.

· Sidney's father, whom has motive for murder and is nowhere to be found locally.

· A crazy video store clerk who is obsessed with scary movies and who I forget the details of.

Another element that makes "Scream" so great is the content of the murders. The victims aren't just helpless plot puppets waiting to die like a mannequin, but real people who want to live. Each puts up a good fight in defending themselves, and several nearly escape the killer. The characters who die are often unexpected, members of the main cast--making this production unpredictable.

The performances are electrifying in Wes Craven's highly acclaimed horror film. The actors act with dramatic intensity and the characters are perfectly cast. Each character is explored with suspicion, and due to Craven's direction, the villain's identity remains a mystery until the lazy finale. I am an experienced filmgoer, and I thought that I had the killer picked out at mid point in the film. But I was so wrong--the film had me fooled all along, and that is not an easy thing to do. I had no clue of who the killer actually was. "Scream" contains so many twists are turns that by the end of the movie, I couldn't have correctly predicated the killer's identity if my life depended on it.

Brought to you by Dimension Films.
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10/10
Favorite movie....
ahaugen10725 August 2004
This movie completely changed my view on horror films.... Before seeing Scream I would never watch anything might make me scared because I hated horror movies... when i saw Scream it completely changed... It also introduced me to Matthew Lillard who I had never heard of before... Now he is my favorite actor! This movie gave so many young actors and actresses a chance to make it big.. Courtney Cox was great in this movie as well as the sequels and after seeing this movie I became a FRIENDS fanatic... This movie also completely changed the horror genre and every scary movie thats come out since takes a little something from Scream... I will always remember the first time I saw Scream... It really captivates its audiences.

ITS A SCREAM BABY!
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10/10
The perfect movie to SCREAM about!!!
sspufan29 November 2011
This movie is truly an American horror classic, and I can guarantee that it will continue to be such for decades to come. The movie is a landmark in film making, considering the fact that it redefined and entire film genre! Scream is smart, funny, and suspenseful all at the same time, which gives the movie the perfect taste for anyone who wants to see a scary and satisfying horror sensation. I remember being so terrified by the Scream mask when I was little. I think I first saw the mask on TV when I was 2 and I was terrified of it, and I nearly peed my pants when I first watched the movie at the age of 6. Scream is the scariest movie that I have ever seen, and along with that, it is the best movie that I have ever seen. It has characters that are easy to connect with and love, especially Sidney Prescott. It is a very enjoyable movie, along with the other 3 in the series so far. I recommend this movie to everyone. It is a true horror phenomenon!
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8/10
Teen Horror flicks don't come much better than this
mjw230530 January 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Another Wes Craven Horror, that delivers, and it delivers with originality and style.

Killing the biggest star in the movie (Drew Barrymore was the biggest when this was made) in the opening sequence showed us all that anyone could be killed in this film, and left the way clear for the killer to reap havoc among the students left at the school.

With plenty of tension, horror moments and humour, coupled with a great twist at the end, Scream remains one of the freshest Horror Flicks of modern times.

8/10
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8/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com
Tss507825 December 2011
Horror legend, Wes Craven, wanted to mix a traditional slasher film, with a who done it mystery, while at the same time parading both. The result is Scream, which turned into a much bigger film and franchise than he expected. He wanted to do this sort of under the radar, with a cast of virtual unknowns, but due to its uniqueness, the movie quickly gained popularity and today is considered one of the best horror movies of all time. The cast are all household names now and the ending of this film is legendary. Twists, turns, paranoia, accusations, one liners, and good looking people is what Scream is all about. The story is a great one, the cast is solid, and when it comes to writer/directors, you can't get much better than Wes Craven. The original Scream is one that should be on your must see list!
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10/10
Send yourself a copy
Maz Murdoch (asda-man)25 August 2011
I'm a sucker for a slasher. I even like the bad ones like "Halloween: Resurrection" and "Urban Legends: Final Cut" but to me they're really fun and often have a really cool twist ending. So when an actual good slasher comes along, I'm all over it. As soon as "Scream" starts with its tremendous opening, you know you're in for a really fun and interesting film with originality. "Scream" ticks all the boxes and is probably the best slasher film ever!

Wes Craven's known for his "Nightmare on Elm St.", "The Hills Have Eyes" and such. All have been OK, but I think Wes has really found his place in the teen slasher genre. He makes it fun and original with the help of the excellent writers who are actually really clever at creating irony plus funny lines and characters.

The thing that holds a slasher together is its characters and "Scream" has really memorable characters. Courtney Cox is a delight as the originally annoying TV presenter that eventually turns into someone who we actually really like. David Arquette is also really funny as Deputy Dewey the policeman. In fact the whole cast is brilliantly fun, including Matthew Lillard who is suitably hammy as the friend of the group.

Aside from the memorable characters and sharp wit, "Scream" is also really exciting and suspenseful. There's even a chase scene that lasts a good 15 minutes. A rarity where nowadays its a quick 2 second chase in the woods. The cinematography and camera movements are also really interesting. The camera sometimes has this dream-like quality to it that suits the film really well. "Scream" never gets dull, it's tense and exciting right up to the shocking end twist that really fulfills your expectations.

"Scream" grasps you by the throat from the minute it starts and doesn't let go. It's memorable and really exciting fun. If you're a fan of slashers like me then "Scream" should be at the top of your list. The sequels are quite good as well, especially the incredible latest instalment "Scream 4" that is probably on par with this incredible original. Horror fans should also really appreciate the references to classic horror films throughout the film. Don't answer the phone, don't open the door, just go onto ebay and click "buy it now!"
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9/10
What is your favourite scary movie?
freemantle_uk1 July 2011
By the 1990s the Slasher genre was becoming stale, filled with clichés, countless sequels and very predictable and uninventive. Likely two men was able to play on this, Kevin Williamson and Wes Craven was able to play on this and made a really excellent take on Slashers.

In the small town of Woodsboro two teenagers (Drew Barrymore and Kevin Patrick Walls) are shockingly murdered, a year after a woman was raped and murdered in the town centre. Very quickly the town is thrown into turmoil, with the media reporting on it, but the teens do not seem to be worried. The killer, known as Ghost-face soon targets another Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), the daughter of a victim, who luckily escapes. But Ghost-face is going to rest and goes on a mission to take down Sidney and anyone who stands in his way.

Scream works because it is set in a world where horror movies do exist and teenagers know clichés. It is a self-aware horror film and has a lot of references to classic horror films like Halloween. Scream is forced to be inventive and Craven who is a master of the horror genre, so knew what he was doing with this film.

Even if Scream was not made with a post-modern, self-aware horror with a comic edge, it still would have been an excellent horror film and one of the best slashers around. Craven and Williamson made sure their characters were fully developed, likable or at least normal. Sidney is a character with a lot of a baggage because of her mother's death and afraid to get close to people. She is a likable because is a friendly, smart, decent girl who is also tough. Sidney's friend Tatum (Rose McGowan) was tough no-nonsense girl who could have easily been the clichéd slut role, but that was avoided because she was a good friend and competent. Courteney Cox plays a unpleasant journalist who cares more ratings and book sales more then safety of people and emotional harm. She is not a journalist who is looking to report the truth or for the public interest. But she does come good at the end. The characters of Randy (Jamie Kennedy) and Stuart (Matthew Lillard) offer a lot of comic relief particular because of their knowledge of horror films. And David Arquettte is solid as a competent police officer who has a typical brother-sister relationship with Tatum.

Cavern made sure Scream was exciting with a lot of action, violence and creative deaths. I particular like his technique of using the camera to follow the victims and move it around the house, adding excitement and intrigue. He knows how to build suspects and he does keep you guessing. I don't get scared watching horror films but you do care for Sidney and the idea of being home alone at night can make you more tense.

I do have a criticism. They does not seem to be much of a reaction at the school hearing about two of their peers being brutally murdered. Most people seem to be very causal about it and saw it as something fun, not worried about a serial killer being on the loose or just saw it as an excuse for a party. Come on, if they was a murder in a small town there would be more sadden, grief and worry. Personally I would have focused on this collective reaction, but I am a more serious person and possibly would have a thriller/a social piece.

Overall, Scream is certainly a worthy horror film, no manner what generation of horror fan you are.
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8/10
Enjoyed it a lot more than expected...
ajs-1028 May 2011
I have been recently reading a lot of reviews of the latest film in this series, Scream 4. Now, for one reason or another I have never seen any of the 'Scream' films before… well not all the way through anyway. Time to change that I thought and so here we are with the first one, Scream. I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would, it doesn't take itself all that seriously and there's an awful lot more humour than I expected.

We open with a mysterious voice calling up a girl called Casey, who is home alone about to watch a scary movie. She tries to blow him off but he is persistent and eventually begins to creep her out. Things don't end too well for Casey, or her boyfriend, Steve, after a masked assailant has finished with them. We then switch to another girl, Sidney, her mother had been murdered almost a year ago and her father is about to leave on a business trip. All the talk the next day at school is about the murder and on returning home Sidney receives a call from a man with a mysterious voice. She isn't so easily scared, but still she is attacked by the same masked assailant. Having fought him off, her boyfriend, Billy turns up just before Deputy Dewey. Having found a cell phone on him, Dewey arrests Billy and Sidney goes to stay the night with Dewey's sister, Tatum. As time goes by the bodies begin to mount up and this attracts the media, particularly ambitious reporter, Gale Weathers. It's only a matter of time before Sidney is to be the next on the list, and anyway, there's a score to settle and an awful lot of suspects.

This made a refreshing change for me, a horror film that doesn't take itself too seriously but at the same time has all the scares and shocks of a more serious one. I liked it! Decent performances all round; Neve Campbell did a good job as Sidney, as did Skeet Ulrich as Billy. Also of note were Courteney Cox as Gale Weathers, David Arquette as Deputy Dewey and Matthew Lillard as Stuart. Also nice cameos from Drew Barrymore as Casey, Wes Craven very briefly appeared as Fred the Janitor and Henry Winkler as Principal Arthur Himbry.

There is a great soundtrack too, including an interesting acoustic rendition of 'Don't Fear the Reaper' when Sidney and Billy are first seen on screen together (very nicely done). I suspect, unfortunately, that the other films in the series may not live up to this rather good beginning, but we shall see… If you haven't seen it, it's definitely worth a viewing, even if you're not really a fan of teen horrors (like me)… Final verdict: Recommended.

My Score: 7.5/10
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10/10
Quick Reviews!!
malkane31621 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Wes Craven proves he's a master of horror and innovation with Scream, over 10 years since his last smash A Nightmare on Elm Street. Craven had been a legend for 3 decades, but with this he made possibly his best known film, reinventing a dead genre for better and worse, making horror films profitable again. More importantly it gave horror fans something to cheer about, a smart, funny, sexy, but above all scary film.

Scream's intro has already gone down in movie history as the benchmark of a shocking and effective way to start a film. Take an established actress, and eventually butcher her to set the tone. The phone, knife, shocks, inevitability of death, blood, helplessness, and a love of scary movies. Craven turns what we expect on its head, and we know we are in for something special. We are introduced to Sydney Prescott, a teenager whose mother was murdered a year ago, trying to get on with her life, coping with school, boyfriend, the court case involving Cotton who has been charged with her mother's murder, and intrusion from journalists. She has become strong through this ordeal, but is still vulnerable. Her boyfriend Billy wants sex, but won't push her as she is still a virgin. The news of the new murder comes as a shock to the whole town. Journalists flock in, including Gail Weathers who had accused Sydney of lies. In school the news spreads, and the cops question the students. Sydney's tight group of friends try to work out who it was, believing everyone's a suspect. Her friends are Tatum, feisty, strong whose boyfriend is like her, and Randy, movie nerd who secretly loves Sydney. When Sydney is attacked, it seems the killer is after her. Her father is supposedly out of town and cannot be found, a curfew is ordered and all the kids have a party. Soon the killer attacks, but who is it?

This is clearly one of the best horror movies of the decade, not just an excuse for gore, but clever on many levels, and self-referential. It is more than that, being one of the best looks at teenage life in the last few years. The characters are extremely well drawn, taking stereotypes, but changing them against our expectations, enhanced by some brilliant performances. Every cast member performs well, with special mention to Randy, Arquette and Lillard. Cox is good, but Campbell is excellent, going through a myriad of emotions, proving that her character does not have to be stupid like most would typically be.

Craven is in control, feeding us clues as to the identity of the killer, but ensuring that by the end we are surprised. Gore is used wonderfully, the scares and jokes are many, but it is the story of Sydney which makes it a classic. She is strong willed, smart, and we go through every emotion with her, aided by Neve's performance. We feel for her, but know we cannot help. The film is shot beautifully, the scenery stunning, an idyllic place to live, but with dark secrets. We get many close-ups of each character's face, Leone style, and we are hurt when one is killed, but become suspicious of each one. The script is sharp with many references to horror movies which the fan will try to recognise.

Thematically we return to Elm Street territory. We must fight for ourselves in the world, and while our friends are the most important people in our lives, they may not be around forever and we must be able to cope with their loss. Parents are either not around, don't care, don't understand, or are to blame. Sydney's mum seems to be the catalyst for the deaths, the only authority figure to gain respect is Dewey, who isn't much older than the teens. The opening scene as Casey crawls towards her nearby parents, with the killer behind her highlights this, that the older generation will not always be able to keep us safe. The Headmaster, played by Henry Winkler hates kids, but he cannot organise or gain respect from them either.We are never certain of Gail's intentions, another point to do with the media's involvement in society today. Death has become trivialised, the victims just a ploy for ratings or power for those who tell the stories. Our thoughts on violence, on violent movies are challenged, Craven a veteran of criticism over use of violence. In the end it's up to us as individuals. The film shows that places we believed to be safe-our homes, and schools, have become dangerous places today too, that we are not safe anywhere. In a group, or by yourself, we are still vulnerable. The scene in the school toilets emphasises this point, and is another beautiful scene. However, the film teaches us that rather than being overcome by fear, by the fact that we are not always safe, we should fight.

The death scenes and scary parts are memorable. My favourites- Sydney on her porch, staring over the hills, and the scene with Sydney, Billy and Gus's Don't Fear the Reaper playing in the background. It gives a perfect glimpse of what it is like to be in love at that age, and together with Campbell's beauty makes an odd atmosphere, especially when viewed again, having watched the other 2 films. We become intimate with Sydney, wishing we could save her from her pain.

With the combination of genres subverted, a brilliant script and score, some excellent acting, good scares and jokes, Scream paved the way for a new breed of horror films, none of which, like Halloween and Elm Street, have matched it. We should be thankful for Craven, as he has provided the world with another film which should be watched and talked about as much as those felt to be the best movies of all time. This is certainly one of the best of our time.
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7/10
For me an inventive mixed bag, but there's more good than not
runamokprods15 October 2014
I've gone back and forth in my feelings about "Scream" both times I've seen it, almost 20 years ago when it opened, and just now There are times when its meta-parody- but–still-scary approach to teen slasher films works quite well, especially the ending which manages to be funny, scary, over the top, and socially witty all at the same time. Other times it's too self conscious to actually be scary, but not surprising enough in its humor to really be as much fun as it could be.

It's also a hard film to criticize, because the answer to almost every complaint (e.g. the actors playing high school kids all look like they're well into in their 20s) can always be 'but that's the whole point, it's always that way in these movies'. But one thing that does annoy me that isn't so easily shrugged off is that the cast seem to be in a number of different movies. Skeet Ulrich, for example, brings a surprising amount of realism and depth to his character, while Courtney Cox as an 'I'll do anything for a story' reporter plays a cartoon of a cartoon. This isn't of issue of 'good' versus 'bad' acting, but it does make figuring out just what the tone of the film is, more muddy than it needs to be.

Probably the best thing about 'Scream' is it knows when to BE best. The opening and closing 15 minutes are the two strongest sections of the film, so if the middle is a little all over the place and sometimes repetitive, and a little more obvious in it's humor, that's not what you walk away remembering.
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8/10
Scream (1996)
WandrinStar24 April 2012
80/100. The movie that begun the silver age of slasher films in the mid to late 1990's. Although Wes Craven's horror filmography is glowing with other culturally significant trips to the macabre ( A Nightmare on Elm Street, Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes) I consider 'Scream' to be his greatest achievement. Not only was the timing for the film perfect, but Kevin Williamson's simple yet brilliant script and an almost perfect cast help hail this movie as one of the best horror movies of the 1990's. Neve Campbell as the film's sexually repressed or 'final girl' character, if you will, rivals that of the original scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis. David Arquette as Dewey Riley steals the spotlight every scene he's in, Courtney Cox proves her acting talent by playing a stuck up, malevolent news reporter whose passion and slight hint of selflessness makes her character hard to not love, while Jamie Kennedy helps channel the audience's thoughts and concerns to everyone on screen. Even minor characters such as Matthew Lillard, Rose McGowan, Skeet Ulrich, and even Henry Winkler all have memorable roles. Drew Barrymore's opening scene although perhaps a little over-the-top, is both memorable and nostalgic to horror movie lore. This strongly meta influenced film is one of the few to get the concept right and the laugh to scare ratio is perfect. The final act is a wild ride that should make everyone shudder at how plausible it would be for someone to put on a Halloween costume and start butchering inebriated teenagers.
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7/10
The little parody that could.
McQualude10 February 2008
I recently watched this again for the first time since it hit theaters. Scream has been parodied and copied so many times the film itself is now a cliché but that doesn't change the brilliance of the original. In some ways Scream is an end cap to the modern slasher sub-genre beginning with Halloween on one end and culminating in Scream. Sure, there have been a number of slashers since but the genre hasn't dominated horror as they did in the two decades following Halloween. Scream isn't terribly original but by capitalizing on that it serves to masterfully sum up the genre and two decades of films before it. Wes Craven, where are you now? Deliver us from Eli Roth and Uwe Boll!
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10/10
"Scream" - 15 years later, it's still the mother of all modern-day, MTV-generation slasher movies!
dee.reid21 October 2011
OK, here it is, finally, the mother of all modern-day, MTV-generation slashers: "Scream" is the popular 1996 slasher epic that single-handedly signaled the return of the slasher movie, and also single-handedly revitalized the sagging horror genre. But there was a twist: a large part of "Scream's" massive success had to deal with its open acknowledgment of its source material, lending the movie a level of self-awareness that had never been done before in horror (or at the very least, done very successfully).

The closest horror movies I can probably think of before then might have been "The Lost Boys" (1987), or maybe even "An American Werewolf in London" (1981). (And yes, I do realize there is a possibility that I could be wrong, but those are the only two I can immediately think of.)

The movie also represented a marriage of old and new: horror maestro Wes Craven ("A Nightmare on Elm Street," "The Hills Have Eyes," "The Last House on the Left," "Shocker," - to name a few), the man behind the camera of this wildly inventive slasher, was a seasoned professional in the horror genre at the time, yet his career at the point up until "Scream" seemed seriously lagging - despite the mild success of the reality-bending "New Nightmare" in 1994. Enter into the picture newbie screenwriter Kevin Williamson, whose inspired script for "Scream" took the lessons of past slasher flicks and injected a hip, knowing, mid-1990s cynicism and self-consciousness into the material that didn't ride the fine line into camp territory: the kids in this movie spoke and acted like they *knew* they were in a horror film. Together, these two gave us horror movie heaven - "Scream."

Despite the over-riding sense of self-knowing and movie-referencing humor, "Scream" is still edge-of-your-seat entertainment of the first order. It's a ludicrous premise that in theory should not work, but it does: the movie is still pretty damn scary (in addition to being gruesomely bloody and gory), even though all the characters are keenly aware of the "facts" of horror movies yet still knowingly break the rules established by the three godfathers of the slasher genre - the aforementioned "A Nightmare on Elm Street" (my personal favorite slasher movie), "Halloween" (1978), and "Friday the 13th" (1980).

The film's plot is deceptively simple: Somebody is taking their love of scary movies too far, and they're making a killing (pun intended). The classic opening double-murder sequence (featuring Drew Barrymore) sets the tone for the rest of the movie, and that is a non-stop roller coaster ride of thrills, chills, and laughs. Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell, whose performance here officially ushered her into being the MTV generation's scream queen) leads an all-star cast of a slasher movie that also doubles as a brilliantly thrilling whodunit.

So whodunit? It obviously wasn't the ultra-feisty reporter Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox), nor was it Sidney's best friend Tatum (Rose McGowan) or Tatum's bumbling older brother, Deputy Dewey (David Arquette). Or was it one of them? Either way, other suspects include Sidney's boyfriend Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich, whose character's name is an obvious reference to the late Donald Pleasance's Dr. Sam Loomis from ye old "Halloween"), Tatum's mentally deficient boy-toy Stu (Matthew Lillard), or was it the movie-loving uber-geek Randy (Jamie Kennedy)?

I've seen "Scream" countless times over the years, several of those times were in a high school graphic design class my sophomore year. I got into it around '99 or 2000, three or four years after the fact, but I loved it from the opening moments. Upon a refresher viewing today to mark the 15th anniversary of the film's release, I realize "Scream" has not lost of any its impact. But because "Scream" was the movie that revitalized the horror and slasher genres in a single dose, it didn't take long for imitators to follow its self-knowing, movie-referencing satirical formula, and some of those imitators include its three sequels (released in 1997, 2000 and 2011, respectively). (And how about those slasher movie parodies in the "Scary Movie" series? Isn't it ironic that "Scream" was initially titled "Scary Movie"?) It was a formula that worked once and only once.

Most famously, perhaps, "Scream" firmly established once and for all, the "rules" for surviving horror movies. Drum roll, Randy:

1) Sex = death,

2) No drinking or doing drugs, and

3) Never say, "I'll be right back" because you won't be.

15 years later, "Scream" is just as thrilling, entertaining, and funny as it was when I first saw it as an impressionable teenager in 1999 or 2000. Wes Craven has always had a way for directing scary movies with lively and three-dimensional characters, but "Scream" carried the revered horror master and his chief screenwriter into mainstream blockbuster territory, three more times, even.

(Yes, I loved - that's right, I said I loved "Scream 4"; it's the best and funniest since the original.)

10/10
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8/10
Scary Movie
kosmasp16 October 2011
Of course Scary Movie was the working title of this Wes Craven vehicle, which got hijacked by the Wayans to make their spoof of this (and other Horror movies of that time). Craven also had made the latest (til then that is) Nightmare movie, called "New Nightmare". It was the first one that got into the whole "we are aware this is a movie, while we're doing it", but wasn't as successful as the Scream movies became. Even though it was a success in America it did take almost a year to come out in Germany for example.

And while the movie "plays" with rules and has fun with it, it is also pretty scary. Of course friends of mine didn't like the fact, that it tried to be funny and scary. Some people like their horror movies to be straight and not fourth-wall breaking. But this one is really a great example how to do it. It also helped Kevin Williamson to become famous (at least for awhile, he worked with Robert Rodriguez - Faculty) and Wes Craven to be "hot" once again.

As you can see, I have not really written anything about the movie yet. I won't really tell you what it is about, but I will dare you to watch it, if you dig horror comedies. Hopefully before you watch the spoof that is called "Scary Movie" ...
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8/10
It was a scream.
georgia_cushion12 June 2011
Warning: Spoilers
I watched Scream 4 before watching this (I kinda wish I hadn't!) and I thought that it would be virtually the same as people tell me they are. I was apprehensive because of the 18 rating but I don't really know why, I personally think it was more 15 worthy as there was nowhere near as much blood and gore as I thought there would be. The death scenes weren't that elaborate, I mean yes the garage door was a little odd but mainly stabbings with knives. I already knew who the killers were and that kinda spoilt it for me but I think it was fairly obvious who it was. I also watched scary movie before this and was shocked at how they are virtually the same. It had a good story- line and great actors. I would give Scream 8.5/10 and say it is OK for 14-15+
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10/10
A must see for any slasher fan!
rob1234-56-35591223 May 2011
If you haven't yet watched this film but you know the plot is a killer dressed up chasing some teens and think it sounds all too unoriginal, think again!

The first 15 minutes of this film will go down in not just horror cinema history, but cinema's history in general. Also, even if you have watched just one horror film in the past, the rules stated in this movie will make perfect sense.

Scream is one huge guessing game, and you can almost guarantee your first and second guesses wont be correct.

Another great thing about Scream is that it catches you off guard with the comedy it has in between death/chase scenes, and in some cases, comedy during these tense and on-the-edge-of-your-seat scenes.

Overall, its a complete must see for a slasher/horror fan of any level, as it is a surprisingly brilliant masterpiece of a horror flick.
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