Director – Wes Craven
Cast – Neve Campbell, Jerry O’Connell, Elise Neal, Liev Schreiber, Courtney Cox, David Arquette, Jamie Kennedy, Duane Martin, Laurie Metcalf, Marisol Nichols, Timothy Olyphant, Jada Pinkett Smith, Omar Epps, Heather Graham, Tim Hillman, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Christopher Doyle, Roger Jackson(Voice)
Release Year – 1997
Reviewed by John of the Dead
Wes Craven’s well-received Scream opened the door for the modern day slasher film, in addition to poking fun at pop culture and horror, and it was only fitting that Craven would follow up his most recent “classic” with a sequel. Debuting less than a year after it’s predecessor, Scream 2 provides more of the same antics provided in Scream except in an inferior but still positive experience that will mostly likely only please fans who enjoyed the original.
Two years after the events that haunted Sidney Prescott(Neve Campbell) a new killer dons the “Ghost Face” mask after a movie about the events hits the big screen, once again bringing Sidney face to face with a killer very close to home.
So Wes Craven and writer Kevin Williamson gave us a film less than a year after the first that happens to take place two years after the first – crafty guys. The opening sequence is awesome and well-written, consisting of the debut of a film portraying the events that took place two years prior, only the killer is in the auditorium and decides to bring in some real life kills not seen on the silver screen. From then on out the conflict and mental anguish takes a toll on Sidney as she is bombarded by all who know of her past, including annoying newscaster Gale Weathers(Courtney Cox), Cotton Weary(Liev Schreiber), and Dewey Riley(David Arquette) – all returning characters of the original film. The rest of the flick plays off just like the first does, with the Ghost Face killer hacking those around Sidney and continuously heckling her in increasingly antagonistic fashion, ultimately boiling down to a showdown where the true killer is revealed. Once again Kevin Williamson provided a fun story that provides numerous horror homages and the fun element of high school that we can all relate to in some way/shape/form. As mentioned earlier, this storyline is simply Scream but with a few new characters – take it or leave it.
Wes Craven’s direction was what really sold Williamson’s story, expertly providing the fun feel required for these films and once again keeping me engaged over what was going on before me. His execution of the horror was positive despite me knowing what to expect (this IS a direct sequel), and just like the film’s predecessor we are given plenty of kill sequences that lacked the gore and insane kills that I wanted to see. He also gets good performances from all involved, however his execution of the characters may turn some people off, especially when the killer is revealed – one of my qualms that also occurred in the first film.
Overall, Scream 2 is a positive sequel that brings more of the same that Scream provided, which basically results in a film that fans of the first will enjoy, and one that haters of the first will hate.