review by Bobby Blakey
Back in 1996 the late horror icon Wes Craven teamed up with writer Kevin Williamson to change the slasher genre with Scream. The film spawned 3 sequels in 1997, 2000 and 2011 as well as a TV series that ran for 3 seasons on MTV. After the fourth film it seemed the film series was at its end, but then Ready or Not directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin & Tyler Gillett came onto the scene and are bringing an all-new chapter in 2022. Now the duo is back for another chapter and leaving Woodsboro behind with Scream VI, but does it live up to the rest of the franchise or will it fail to make the cut?
Scream VI follows the four survivors of the latest Ghostface killings who leave Woodsboro behind and start a fresh chapter. The film brings back stars from the previous films including Melissa Barrera, Jasmin Savoy Brown, Mason Gooding, Jenna Ortega, Hayden Panettiere and Courteney Cox alongside new additions Jack Champion, Henry Czerny, Liana Liberato, Dermot Mulroney, Devyn Nekoda, Tony Revolori, Josh Segarra, and Samara Weaving.
Like any film that has this many entries they have their ups and downs, but I must say even the weakest of these films are still enjoyable. I was really surprised with the direction of the previous entry and how well it not only worked to continue the story, but also lay the groundwork for the future of the franchise. It worked to cap the entire series off and that is where the concern comes on if it has the legs to not only allow the new cast to run things, but moving locales to shake it up and bring an original voice to it. I can happily say that this latest entry works great to further the legacy while keeping everything we love intact.
This is a way more brutal Ghost Face and in turn feels like the most brutal of
the franchise. If you have seen the trailer and the scene in the bodega then you know the killer uses more than a knife and that is just the stepping stone to a different kind of Ghost Face. Have no fear, it doesn’t go so far off the rails to be something different, but enough to let you know this is a new generation of the violence.
The cast are good and have great chemistry showcasing their ease with taking over to lead the franchise. I know there were issues with not having Neve Campbell’s Sidney here, but to be honest I think it is better for it. Not because I wouldn’t like to see her again, but to let it move on and stop forcing every story to circle back to her. Like the crazy film series Stab that was developed within the film these are new chapters and heading in their own welcomed way. Have no fear there are still legacy characters popping up with Courtney Cox back as Gale and Hayden Panettiere returning as Kirby from Scream 4. Her return is an interesting direction that brings something new to the table to run with for this outing and theoretically could be extended in the future depending on how it plays out.
I loved the new take on the opening sequence the series has become known for and the big twist reveal was fine. It wasn’t what I had hoped we were going to do and not totally hard to figure out, but it still worked well. Once again I really dug this entry and think it just further makes the films before it better as one long cohesive story that I will be eager to dive into for years to come.
In addition to the film this release offers up bonus content including commentaries, gag reel, and numerous featurettes taking fans behind bringing this new chapter to life. Grab your copy of Scream VI available now on digital, 4K, Blu-ray and DVD from Paramount Home Entertainment.