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After a series of mysterious deaths befalls their small town, an offbeat group of friends led by Sidney Prescott (Campbell) become the target of a masked killer in this smash-hit “clever thriller” (The Washington Post) that launched the Scream franchise and breathed new life into the horror genre.
• Production Featurette
• Behind the scenes: "On the Scream Set" and "Drew Barrymore"
• Q&A with the cast and crew
• Theatrical trailer
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At this same time an unknown but determined writer named Kevin Williamson has locked himself into a hotel room for 3 weeks determined to not go home until he completes the writing of a screenplay for his newest story which he is simply calling “Scary Movie”. To make a long story short, he completes writing the screenplay and begins to shop it around to film studios. The Weinstein brothers at Dimension films love it, they sign Kevin Williamson to write the film and after initially being turned down by Wes Craven, Wes gave it a second chance and agreed to come aboard to direct the film whose name was later changed to “Scream”.
Wes Craven has an incredible legacy in the horror genre that shaped and re-shaped the entire genre over the course of 40 years of his films. He revolutionized the genre in the 80’s with “A Nightmare On Elm Street” and now over ten years later he was about to do it once again with the Scream franchise. Scream is a genuine masterpiece because it not only contains all of the elements needed for a fulfilling horror movie, it goes one step further and introduces new ideas while being done with a keen sense of self-awareness throughout the movie that had never been done before in the genre. Wes Craven’s New Nightmare started to explore this idea of self-awareness of the actors within the movie but in Scream he took it to the next level. We see the now famous “Rules To Survive A Horror Movie” as perfectly explained by one of my favorite Scream characters Randy. Moreover, this thread of self-awareness runs throughout the picture from multiple characters but never done in an “over the top” manner where it does not “work” within the context of the moment.
It is the story of a small town where people are being brutally murdered and the killer’s attention begins to focus on the lead character Sydney Prescott and as the film unfolds there is revealed a much larger back-story that is under girding all of the events which are happening. No one can create tension and suspense in a scene better than Wes Craven and he is arguably the star of this film because of how brilliantly he tells the story visually from behind the cameras. Scream delivers at all the important angles and keeps you guessing as well as jumping throughout! The ending is fantastic and very original!!
I am a STICKLER for not giving spoilers and even though this film is now TWENTY years old I will still not reveal anything more specific about the film other than to say, this is a MUST watch film for anyone who enjoys a top-shelf murder mystery, suspenseful thriller and slasher horror. Wes Craven’s direction and tone for the film is nothing less than SUPERB and combined with brilliant writing this is an instant classic and is no surprise to this fan/viewer that it turned the entire horror genre upside down upon its release. Horror movies are not supposed to make hundreds of millions of dollars in the box office but Scream and it’s sequels have done just that. It is NO accident!!
This is the film that sparked a myriad of “copy-cat” films in the late 90’s and early 2000’s who were desperately trying to reach the success of the Scream franchise but all of these far more inferior films failed miserably to do so.
Finally, if you have never seen Scream and perhaps you’re not a fan of the horror genre please hear me out, you owe it to yourself to watch this film at least once! Twenty years later it still stands up tall and towering over the genre. Sadly, Wes Craven passed away in August of 2015 but thankfully he was able to see the incredible fingerprint he left on the film industry which he helped shape since the 1970’s. I can only imagine what new projects he would be working on right now which upon completion would once again revolutionize the genre. Rest In Peace Wes Craven and thank you for over forty years of SCREAMS!!!!
But the video is where opinions will clash. For me the upgrade to blu ray is much better than my dvd version. I never liked the dvd presentations and the blu ray is in a 1080p enhanced widescreen which makes viewing the film better. There is some fine detail but the picture overall just does not POP like a quality blu ray does. I think when most people watch a blu ray they want that crispness and clarity that just makes it far surpass the dvd. It can become almost like you are in the movie. I think people forget the film is 15 years old and overall the picture is acceptable but the poor quality of the opening scene just leaves it lacking for me. When the movie is offered on blu ray at a steal price which Amazon seems to be doing now it is definitely worth a buy but if you are pretty satisfied with a dvd version you own I would think before purchasing it at full price.