Review: Scream returns in a self-referential reboot

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Scream was ahead of the game when its fourth installment in 2011 made fun of the idea of reboots within its very own reboot.

So 11 years later what could it have left to say in yet another reboot? Turns out in a cinema landscape of endless “requels” and fan pandering, now couldn’t have been a better time for the return of this meta franchise.

Scream (confusingly named the same as the first film, though there’s a joke about that of course) introduces a new teen friendship group living in Woodsboro, the town famous for a spree of murders by a killer wearing a Ghostface mask.

Sam (Melissa Barrera) returns to Woodsboro with her boyfriend Richie (Jack Quaid) after her sister Tara (Jenna Ortega) is attacked by Ghostface, miraculously surviving.

Despite their estrangement, Sam is determined to protect her sister from this new killer, but a secret from her past suggests the real target might have been Sam all along.

Camera IconNeve Campbell as Sidney Prescott and Courteney Cox as Gale Weathers in Scream. Credit: BROWNIE HARRIS

Fans can be reassured this new Scream brings the same self-referential, campy melodrama that the series is known for.

If anything, this one leans even more into the self-mocking tone and amps up the comedy under the helm of new directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett (known for their own gory horror comedy Ready or Not), after the death of original series director Wes Craven.

The series “legacy characters” are back in Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), TV host Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox) and ex-sherif Dewey Riley (David Arquette).

But the film is definitely passing on the baton to the younger generation, (which also provides another opportunity for self mocking jokes.) and the new Millennial/Gen Z cast show that the series is in good hands with fun performances all round.

With solid laughs, meta references and enough gory deaths to satisfy any horror fan, Scream is a fun return to the franchise.

Scream (MA)

Directors: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett

Starring: Melissa Barrera, Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox

Four stars

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