Scream VI – Review

“Scream 6 (2023)”

Scream 6 is now the sixth movie in the franchise, but for the purposes of this film, it’s mainly a follow-up to the fifth movie that came out last year. I didn’t review the previous Scream film too favourably, I thought that it was a bit too full of itself and I think that it took the self-aware humour too far, particularly with how it handled recent horror ‘re-quels’ (a word that I still find dumb to say).

This one does reunite most of the cast from the last movie, but the only legacy character returning is Courteney Cox. Hayden Panettiere is reprising her role of Kirby from Scream 4, though this time she’s an FBI agent investigating the case.

The best way to describe Scream 6 is that it follows the surviving young cast members from the previous movie all going to college in New York (likely a reference to Jason takes Manhattan, aka Friday the Thirteenth part 8, though unlike that movie this one’s entire runtime actually takes place in New York).

Because of the nature of Scream movies, I obviously can’t discuss most of the plot other than it’s another one of Ghostface going on another spree. I also can’t talk about much of the plot of this film because it would also spoil the plot of the previous one. This film is very predicated on you seeing Scream 5 (2022).

If you thought that I didn’t really like the last Scream movie, you’ll probably assume that I don’t like this one all that much, especially considering that I felt that the last one was very derivative, even if it was by design – it goes back to my previous point of just because you point out that something is stupid doesn’t make it less stupid.

Scream 6 actually fixes many of my problems with the previous one, with one exception that I won’t go into because it ties into a major part of this movie and a plot twist of a previous film. Given how well this film has turned out, I actually want people to go back and watch this one since it has actually retroactively changed my opinion of the last. It’s my proof that you shouldn’t try to erase bad movies but instead just improve on them! In the case of this movie, they do a pretty good job, the mystery is intriguing surrounding the motives and identity of the new Ghostface, and we have a new setting which makes for some interesting takes on the typical Scream movie formula, and despite the fact that it’s quite hard to do, the film does a good job subverting expectations.

Every reveal is very decent! The film does a good job making use of the New York setting without doing anything very tawdry like having a sequence take place at a famous landmark.

This film gives us much more likeable characters this time around. I felt that this one improves on the characters from the previous film and it felt like actual character development is happening.

There’s not really too much wrong this time around, but there are a few exceptions. Some characters do make dumb decisions which are easily avoidable, but the film makes good use of some excellent sequences – the one shown a lot in the trailers that take place in the subway is very effective, and the film’s meta-commentary this time, while not too interesting, is still quite good. This time it’s talking about the idea of franchises and how they treat certain characters.

The ending of this one made me feel a little conflicted, but I feel like they kind of made the right choice. The mystery reveal does work, but there’s a certain character whose development was going in an interesting direction but could lead to some bad choices if there is a Scream 7.

Despite the fact that Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett have directed an excellent film, I think that they should end on 6 rather than go for another pseudo-trilogy.

Scream 6 is a very good movie that does improve on the previous one, though given the nature of this film and how it ends, I think it’s time to call it a day on this franchise. I don’t even know what you would do in a potential Scream 7, but knowing my luck it’s probably already in development. As a whole, I actually think Scream 6 not only does a good job with this movie but also improves the film that came before it. If you like the franchise, definitely check it out but make sure that you watch the previous film – this film requires that you be aware of the revelations and plot of that film before you go into this one.
Calvin – Nerd Consultant

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