The newest installment in the Scream Franchise is now in theaters. The Core Four from Scream (2022), most commonly known as Scream V, have relocated to the city so nice they named it twice… New York City. Well, it’s not so nice because this time around Ghostface is meaner and more brutal than ever.

The four main friends Sam Carpenter (played by Melissa Barrera), Tara Carpenter (played by Jenna Ortega), Mindy Meeks-Martin (played by Jasmin Savoy Brown), and Chad Meeks-Martin (played by Mason Gooding) have traveled to NYC to attend college. Except for Sam who has tagged along so that she can protect Tara from the hazards of life.

The film parallels Scream II (1997) in that it adapts the college environment as well as introducing new characters that serve to fuel suspicions and cannon fodder. As with every Scream film, the killings begin fairly early in the film, and they don’t stop until the very end.

There’s a couple legacy characters that enter the battlefield along with the Core Four. There’s Gale Weathers (played by Courteney Cox) and Kirby Reed (played by Hayden Panettiere), but there’s one notable character that’s mentioned but not seen. Neve Campbell’s epic final girl, Sidney Prescott, is absent from the film. I know some people didn’t particularly like Sidney not being in the film, but I didn’t mind it. It shows that the films are passing the torch to the next generation.

So, this is the part where I look at a couple of elements and then rank the film in that category out of five. At the end, I’ll add everything up and then the average of those rankings will show exactly what I thought of the film.  

Acting: 4/5

Barrera and Ortega were the standouts in terms of acting. I really enjoyed watching them be terrified by Ghostface. There’s one moment in the film where they realize they have to fight for their lives and their expressions smoothly switch from flight to fight and it’s great. The secondary characters were pretty good as well. Cox has been playing the role of Gale for about a quarter of a century, so she nails her performance. The performance that I didn’t quite care for was the actual Ghostface killer. Without spoilers, I won’t say who it is or how many killers there may be. However, I felt that the performance of the Ghostface killer(s) was just okay. I also liked that Ortega got more to do in this film.

Story: 3/5

It’s your standard Scream plot. Psycho(s) try to kill the main characters because of some loose vendetta that normally has something to do with the past. While there are some different paths chosen, it still follows the formula. Once the main characters realize that they are being targeted by Ghostface, someone explains the rules of the horror movie they’re in. They then evade and fight the killer. In the third act, everything’s revealed and the main characters either die or survive. One of the reasons this score isn’t higher is that when the killer(s) was revealed, I was sort of letdown. While the motive was sound, it still rang hollow in my audience’s heart. I felt like the movie was building to a different ending, but then decided against it and went the more plausible route.

Action: 4/5

I’ve watched plenty of reviews about this film and one of the things that I’ve heard is that Ghostface is so much more athletic and brutal this time around than in any other film. And I have to agree. The action in this film is great. The fight scenes were tense. At times I felt unsure of what the outcome would be. The deaths were great. However, the reason why this film only gets a 4/5 instead of 5/5 is because there should’ve been a lot more deaths. People get stabbed, sliced, gutted and hardly blink an eye. I felt for sure a couple of people were dead, but nope, those people survived.

Rewatchability: 3/5

The entire third act is basically an Easter egg so if you like seeing stuff from the prior movies you’ll probably watch this film a few extra times for that. At most, I’ll probably watch it three times. There’s a lot of interesting things they jammed into this film that are worth a few views.

Originality: 2/5

This is the sixth film in the franchise. Originality flew out the window a long time ago. While the filmmakers do change some things up a bit, there are a plethora of moments where they steal from the five other films.

Post Film Feelings: 3/5

After leaving the theater, my friends and I talked about the film some and I liked watching the reviews of others. However, most of my thoughts about the film post-first time watching it were based on what I thought should’ve happened instead of what actually happened. I think most of that was due to my feelings about the reveal in the third act.

Overall Score: 3.16/5

Scream VI wasn’t as good as Scream (AKA Scream V) in my opinion. While I didn’t miss Sidney, I also wasn’t impressed with the reveal of Ghostface. I thought it was weak and was too close to another reveal in the Scream franchise. I appreciate the callbacks to the other Scream films. For the Scream lovers out there, this will be a must see. Overall, this film ranks third out of all the Scream films.

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