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‘Scream VI’ – Review

‘Scream VI’ – Review


Ghostface is back, and blood will flow as the slashing moves from the sleepy streets of Woodsboro to the city that never sleeps in New York, and no one is safe from the knife in Scream VI.

The film continues with the survivors of the latest Ghostface killings from Scream, sisters Samantha and Tara Carpenter (Melissa Barrera, Jenna Ortega) and twins Chad and Mindy Meeks (Mason Gooding, Jasmin Savoy Brown), leaving Woodsboro behind and starting a new chapter of their lives in New York City only to again be plagued by a streak of murders by a new Ghostface killer.

Following on from their work on the revival of the Scream series with 2022’s Scream, directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett return behind the camera for Scream VI. And the rules of the genre change once more in this all-new picture! Forget about what you think you know because we’re done with sequels, prequels and requel, now we’re firmly in the space of the franchise. And all bets are off. Combining the best elements of the slasher genre with a dark satirical edge that directs itself against our modern culture’s desire for the franchise model, none of the characters in Scream VI are safe, and Bettinelli-Olpin and Gillett crank up the volume with what’s possible in Scream VI.

Focusing once more on half-sisters Samantha and Tara Carpenter (Melissa Barrera, Jenna Ortega) who are still trying to come to terms with the events of Woodsboro where Sam learned she was the illegitimate daughter of serial killer Billy Loomis (Skeet Ulrich), both are still struggling with their recent past, and it’s causing a rift between the two of them. Even scarier for Barrera’s Samantha is that she actually enjoyed killing Richie Kirsch (Jack Quaid), when Ghostface starts up his killing spree she finds herself as the prime suspect, and her haunted legacy adds to the stress of the film.

Courtney Cox returns once more as Gale Weathers and as the film’s big ‘legacy character’ she’s a target for Ghostface and has to account for her past choices. We get to see Cox’s Gale in a new light, and Dewey’s sacrifice has had a deep impact on her. We’ve never seen Ghostface come directly for her, and Cox has serious grit and is quick to fight back. Hayden Panettiere also returns as Kirby Reed, a survivor of the 2011 Ghostface killings, who has turned her life around and is now a door-stomping FBI agent, and she’s more than ready to finish off the killers this time.

Scream VI is an intense catch that will induce a sense of heightened panic in the audience with Bettinelli-Olpin and Gillett drawing out the suspense and paranoia of the plot. There are plenty of moments where audiences will find themselves on the edge of their seats, and by delaying the impact of the violence the scares are that much freakier. Scream VI also delivers heavily on the gore front, and there’s plenty of blood and guts to keep horror fans satiated. All of this adds up to new growth within the slasher genre and shows how whatever the decade a maniac on the loose with a knife will keep audiences hooked.

Scream VI is a horror film that goes right for the jugular, and it’s a crazy cinematic ride from beginning to end. Blood, guts and cinema trivia all take presence in the production, and horror fans looking for their fix will get it with this one.

Image: Paramount Pictures