Scream VI

Live from New York, it’s Ghostface!

“Scream VI,” once again directed by Radio Silence, continues this meta horror franchise where the characters continue to acknowledge they’re in a franchise. And as if that weren’t enough, Ghostface is back to raise some Hell, not in Woodsboro, but in the Big Apple with some Easter Eggs, classic lines (“What’s your favorite scary movie?”) and what appears to be an old mask.

It starts off with what appears to be a spoiler alert, continues with certain accusations, nostalgia, and then more slashing and twists. It’s a pattern that works, especially when some people don’t watch enough movies to survive certain doom.

The young survivors of the last “Scream” entry-consisting of Billy Loomis’ daughter Sam Carpenter (Melissa Barrera), her half-sister Tara (Jenna Ortega), and twins Mindy (Jasmine Savoy Brown) and Chad (Mason Gooding)-have all moved to NYC, although Sam is still haunted by her past. She’s overprotective of her sister enough to taser a jerk in his crouch. She can’t talk to the guy of her dreams (Josh Segara), considering what she just went through. I really can’t blame her. And on top of all that, she’s accused of being the “Stab” villain her ex-boyfriend wanted her to be labeled as, thanks to the rumors on social media.

It sounds familiar, considering how bad “Halloween Ends” was in its subplot where a creepy babysitter accidentally kills a bratty kid, is labeled a monster, and teams up with Michael Myers to kill people. Not helping his case. It’s a little irritable here, considering what I dealt with last October, but Sam knows better than that idiot. She’s a strong young woman.

And since the Ghostface killer is slashing victims, Sam and Tara can’t leave the city during the investigation. But they can uncover the mystery on what level they’re now at in this franchise.

Two more franchise regulars are back. Not Neve Campbell, due to a payment disagreement, which even the fans found was unfair, considering she is also the heart and soul of the franchise with the late Wes Craven. But Courtney Cox is back as Gale Weathers, who broke her promise on letting the villains “die in anonymity,” which is why Sam is wrongfully tormented. And Hayden Panettiere is back as Kirby Reed, who now becomes an FBI agent. Yes, she’s old enough to be an agent. And yes, she has good tastes in horror films.

The new cast members consist of Jack Champion (who just played the Spider character we hate) as the “shy, dorky” Ethan, Liana Liberato as the “sex-positive” Quinn, Dermot Mulroney as her cop father Detective Bailey, Devyn Nekoda as Mindy’s girlfriend Anika, Tony Revolori as film student Jason Carvey, and some “Ready or Not” stars like Samara Weaving as a film studies professor and Henry Czerny as Sam’s therapist. It’s interesting that Weaving won’t survive, despite the fact that she made that family of satanists explode before.

“Scream VI” is another worthy sequel to come out in March after last week’s box office success of “Creed III.” This is definitely going to be making some money, considering the fanbase. And like that threequel, this sixth entry misses the original heroine, but isn’t pigheaded about it. In fact, it allows Barrera to keep Sam at her own pace, trying to deal with the concept of her life and where she comes from, but she never succumbs to what society tells her. Obviously, the “Halloween Ends” creep didn’t grasp that concept.

Most of the twists are entertaining, while some are predictable, but they’re amazingly acted, once you see the killers this time are BLANK and BLANK. Some of the jokes are funny, and a lot of the newcomers and alumni are pros. And the NYC setting really pushes things further, especially when people are in costumes in a subway.

Rating: 3 out of 4.

Categories: comedy, Horror, Mystery, Sequel, Thriller

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