Spoiler-Free “Scream” Review

The latest addition to the “Scream” franchise came out last month after decades of sequels, remakes, television series, and parodies that would have left most franchises completely devoid of any good content. 

I’m a huge horror movie fan and the original “Scream” film is one of my all-time favorite movies so while I was excited to see the new installment, I went in with low expectations. However, I was pleasantly surprised by one of the most enjoyable horror films to come out in recent years. Unlike many films that have followed the same formula in the past, the new film seemed to capture and update what made the original 1996 “Scream” movie great. Clever writing with the self-awareness to the horror genre’s tropes, a cast of suspicious characters with potential motives, relevant comedy, and of course great kills. It took the basic “Scream” formula, the mysterious killer in the Ghostface mask violently picking off people in the town until the big reveal, and updated it without forcing modernity.

The script of the film read to me like it was written by someone who really loved and understood the original “Scream” movies. It started with an homage to the iconic opening phone call scene in the original Scream with Drew Barrymore (“what’s your favorite scary movie?”), but with updated dialogue to reference newer horror movies and current discourse surrounding what makes a scary movie good. The film followed the rules and pacing of the original story in the way a lot of horror remakes didn’t. The new Ghostface kept all the classic personality traits that made them a menacing but entertaining killer to watch. Stars Jenna Ortega and Melissa Barrera held their own as the film’s protagonists who would become both the victims and possible suspects of Ghostface’s violent acts. And while the dialogue was updated for a modern audience, the writing didn’t try too hard to push social commentary or create an exaggerated version of how adults think teenagers talk.

What made the movie so fun for me was the meta self-awareness. I was expecting another gory slasher packed with references to previous horror movies where we watch a group of protagonists fight for survival against Ghostface while they try to unmask the killers, but the film provided a more clever rendition of this. This film takes place within the world of film where the town is known for the bloody Ghostface murders of the ’90s, and the “Scream” movie franchise exists but is instead called “Stab,” a series of movie adaptations based on the “real” events of the past “Scream” movies. The main characters in the film are all aware of their town’s gruesome past and it helps inform their decisions throughout the movie. Both the real-life murders and the movies are referenced throughout the film in a variety of clever ways. The original characters also tie back in with the original story in a clever way. 

For example, there’s a scene in the film where a character watches the iconic scene from the 1992 “Scream” where Randy, the film’s horror movie nerd who lays out rules for survival throughout, watches a scene from an old horror movie while complaining about how dumb and unrealistic it is that the characters in horror movies never look behind themselves in movies. The irony of that scene is he is then killed because he didn’t see Ghostface sneaking up behind him. In the new film, this self-aware irony is taken to a new level when Mindy, the horror movie nerd of the new group of teenage protagonists who lays out rules for survival throughout the film, watches the reenactment of that scene in the “Stab” movie while laughing at the irony of Randy making fun of the character while not following his own rules despite that being his main character trait. In traditional “Scream” fashion, as she yells “look behind you,” Ghostface is creeping up behind her on the couch.

My main critique of the otherwise enjoyable film was some of the performances of the supporting cast. Because most of the main characters were teenagers there were a lot of newcomers in the supporting cast who didn’t match the energy of the stars. There were some characters I found unnecessary or annoying but I understood why they had to be there to add suspects for who the new Ghostface would be. They didn’t take away from my enjoyment of the film.

The movie was a lot of fun and the experience of seeing it went above any new horror movie experience in recent memory. It was the perfect blend of scary, funny, and over-the-top that made me love the original Scream. Because the reveals are what makes this movie so interesting, it’s hard to fully discuss without spoiling, but when the killers are revealed it’s a great payoff that feels like it could be joining the list of iconic scenes from the entire franchise. Without giving it away,  I thoroughly enjoyed the film as a whole and I’m looking forward to seeing the direction the franchise goes in.

3.5/5 Stars

Written by: Naiima Paul

Buzz Lightyear Trailer Starring Chris Evans Officially Drops

[Cover Photo] Photo Credit: Pixar

To infinity and beyond with Chris Evans.

Captain America aka Chris Evans is voicing Buzz Lightyear in the upcoming Pixar movie dubbed “Lightyear”. Pixar released the trailer for the upcoming film on Wednesday, October 27, 2021.

The movie will not follow the original space commander as we know it. The 2022 film introduces the “real-life” human astronaut whose adventures inspired the original film, an origin story. 

Photo Credit: Pixar

In the trailer, we see Lightyear suit up for a mission. He boards a space shuttle, and the ground crew is watching as he blasts off into space. Lightyear explores alien planets, learns about space travel from a robot, and the backstory of the iconic green and white spacesuit.

Tim Allen originally voiced Buzz Lightyear for all four Toy Story movies ranging from 1995 to 2019. “Lightyear” is scheduled to land in theaters on June 17, 2022. 

You can watch the trailer for the new “Lightyear” film here. I personally can’t wait for this movie as Buzz Lightyear is my favorite character from the Toy Story franchise. Interesting to learn his backstory. 

Who’s your favorite character? Let me know by hitting me up on Twitter or Instagram @MikeStarkCA.

Written By: Mike Stark | @MikeStarkCA

Vin Diesel Walks Paul Walker’s Daughter Down the Aisle at Her Wedding

(Cover Photo) Photo Credit: Meadow Walker | Frazer Harrison Getty Images

Grab the tissues because this one tugs on the heartstrings.

Meadow Walker, the daughter of late actor Paul Walker got married earlier this month to Louis Thornton-Allan in the Dominican Republic during an intimate seaside ceremony.

Surrounded by friends, family, and a few Fast and the Furious cast members with who Meadow shares a close bond since her father’s passing eight years ago. Those cast members included Vin Diesel and Jordana Brewster. 

In a photo shared from the ceremony by the beautiful bride on Instagram, we see Diesel escort Meadow down the aisle in her father’s place; The two are walking arm-in-arm.

Photo Credit: Meadow Walk on Instagram

Meadow told Vogue in an interview “We couldn’t have imagined it to be any more perfect and personal, and honestly it was easy and simple. Louis and I knew exactly what we wanted from the start. It was a very intimate celebration.”

She continued “We were all barefoot, dancing in the sand. To finish the night, there was a wonderful display of fireworks, and we lit lanterns into the picturesque night sky.”

Since Paul Walker died from a fatal car accident in 2013, cast members and crew from the “Fast and Furious” franchise have welcomed walker daughter as their own. Congratulations to Meadow and Louis.

Written By: Mike Stark | @MikeStarkCA