Scream 3

"Weak"

Scream 3 Review


The minute Kevin Williamson said no to writing "Scream 3," that should have been the end of it. The only thing that made "Scream" special in the first place was the writer's dark, self-aware wit regarding the conventions of the cheesy teen horror genre.

But then, Williamson had already run out of steam when he wrote the series' second installment, which was little more than an unnecessarily convoluted, workaday slasher flick with a couple well-placed sardonic remarks.

Continuing the decline, now comes "Scream 3," which Wes Craven -- the director of the whole series -- swears will be the last one. Good thing, too.

In "3," the gimmick is dead on arrival and the killer is apparently a Rich Little wannabe, as he spends most of the movie calling minor characters on their cell phones and imitating the voices of major characters to lure them into certain death down unlit hallways. The tell-tale metallic zinging sound of a knife blade follows, along with a couple shrieks and a little splatter. Then rinse and repeat.

Aside from such now-boring formula fare (this sequel has even less spirit than the regrettable imitators "Scream" has spawned), Craven relies mainly on under-written Hollywood farce subtext to keep the movie afloat.

The murders this time out take place on and around the set of "Stab 3," another installment of the movie-within-a-movie cashing in on the stalking of poor Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) by the Munch-masked killer.

It seems the real psycho is still out there and on the back lot of fictitious Sunrise Studios. He's following the shooting script for "Stab 3" and whacking the nobody actors who play our favorite characters, so Craven won't have to hack up familiar faces now that we've grown accustomed to them.

Besides Campbell, the returning cast included Liev Schreiber as Cotton Weary, now a celeb with his own talk show; Courteney Cox Arquette as ruthless tabloid TV reporter Gale Weathers; and David Arquette as dopey sheriff Dewey, who has succumbed to the temptations of show biz and become a consultant on "Stab 3." Dewey spends his days cozying up to a manic Method actress (indie princess Parker Posey, chewing scenery like bubble gum with delicious aplomb) who has the part of Gale in the movie.

Hired to write the "Scream 3" script probably based on his propensity toward twist endings, Ehren Kruger ("Arlington Road" and the upcoming "Reindeer Games") doesn't deliver. His few alleged surprises -- based on the feeble "rules" governing movie trilogies -- are easily sussed long before they happen, and the inevitable showdown scene in which Sidney finally gets to confront her tormentor just goes on forever.

In an attempt to convince us something scary is just around the corner, "3" exhausts its jumps-tinkles-and-strings horror soundtrack to the point that it soon becomes utterly ineffective. Even worse, Craven can't seem to overcome the fact that in order to maintain any air of danger, the returning characters have developed into dimwits, forgetting all the horror movie caveats they already knew (remember, being killed in spite of knowing the game was the whole point of the original "Scream").

Save two killer cameos that movie buffs will love, "Scream 3" has forsaken its clever legacy. Frankly, there ought not to have been any "Scream" sequels in the first place. Making them negates the underlying mockery of the original. But if there really will be no more installments after this one, at least we can look forward to that.



Scream 3

Facts and Figures

Genre: Horror/Suspense

Run time: 116 mins

In Theaters: Friday 4th February 2000

Box Office Worldwide: $161.8M

Budget: $40M

Distributed by: Dimension Films

Production compaines: Dimension Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 36%
Fresh: 40 Rotten: 71

IMDB: 5.5 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Deputy Dwight 'Dewey' Riley, as Sidney Prescott, as Gale Weathers, as Mark Kincaid, as Jennifer Jolie, as Roman Bridger, as Tyson Fox, as Angelina Tyler, as John Milton, as Sarah Darling, as Tom Prinze, as Hollywood Executive, as Steven Stone, as Bianca, as Martha Meeks, as Randy Meeks, as Silent Bob, as Jay, as Cotton Weary

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Life Movie Review

Life Movie Review

Like a mash-up of Alien and Gravity, this ripping sci-fi horror movie is very effective...

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

Based on a true story, it's the historical aspect of these events that holds the...

Chips Movie Review

Chips Movie Review

It's clear from the very start that this movie has little to do with the...

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to...

The Salesman Movie Review

The Salesman Movie Review

Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi won his second Oscar with this astute drama which, like 2011's...

Get Out Movie Review

Get Out Movie Review

Leave it to a comedian to make one of the scariest movies in recent memory....

Personal Shopper Movie Review

Personal Shopper Movie Review

After winning a series of major awards for her role in Olivier Assayas' Clouds of...

Advertisement
Certain Women Movie Review

Certain Women Movie Review

In films like Wendy and Lucy and Meek's Cutoff, writer-director Kelly Reichardt has told sharply...

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

After the success of 2014's Godzilla reboot, the Warner Bros monsters get their own franchise,...

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Filmmaker Gurinder Chada (Bend It Like Beckham) draws on her own family history to explore...

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

With an extra dose of attitude and energy, this Irish comedy-drama hits us like a...

Logan Movie Review

Logan Movie Review

Hugh Jackman returns to his signature role one last time (so he says), reuniting with...

Patriots Day Movie Review

Patriots Day Movie Review

The third time's a charm for Mark Wahlberg and director Peter Berg, who previously teamed...

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

It's no surprise that this creep-out horror thriller is packed with whizzy visual invention, since...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.