Ten years after the massacre committed by a killer, nicknamed “Ghostface”, wearing a mask inspired by Munch’s painting “The Scream”, and claiming the influence of other murderers who have plagued the town of Woodsboro in the past, a murderer begins to commit crimes upon his return. It uses the same disguise and the same modus operandi of its predecessors. The first of her targets is Tara, a young woman, alone at home, who makes the mistake of answering the phone to a stranger …
This fifth installment of a saga that began in 1997 is called simply “Scream”, like the original episode. Remake, reboot, prequel, even “requel”, a term used by one of the characters in the film, designating a sequel that refers to the very first opus and ignores subsequent iterations? Nay, this is a sequel to the fourth “Scream” of the name, dating from 2011, including the then deputy sheriff, who became the chief cop of the small town.
On the other hand, and he is largely absent from the case, not with Wes Craven at the helm. The American director, who had directed all the “Scream”, died in 2015. To succeed him, the producers called on a duo, Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, author of “Wedding nightmare”, of good quality, in 2019.
A breath of fresh air also within the cast, with a host of young actors, including the Franco-Tunisian Sonia Ben Ammar. A few heavyweights are making their comeback, such as Courteney Cox, Neve Campbell and David Arquette. Kevin Williamson, screenwriter of opus 1, 2 and 4, also returns to service, but as executive producer and guardian of the temple.
The film is therefore riddled to the core with references to the horror film genre. A scene evokes that of the shower in “Psychosis”, by Alfred Hitchcock, some of the characters have the surname Carpenter, like the director of the first “Halloween”, another is named Wes, like Wes Craven … We also smile at the Courteney Cox nod to the series “Friends”, which made her famous.
But the film is above all a self-celebration of the saga. As proof, the first sequence, a true copy of the one opening the very first “Scream”. The spectator, a little startled, witnesses a permanent mise en abyme. This “Scream” will easily delight fans who have seen all the previous episodes, but will probably have more difficulty convincing others, not having all the keys to enter this very codified universe.
“Scream”, an American horror film by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, with Melissa Barrera, Neve Campbell, David Arquette, Courteney Cox … 1:55. Forbidden to under 16s.