Or, What I Wouldn't Do For A Press Pass (Updated)
I had been dreading that I might have to advise you dear readers, to take a deep breath before plunging into these, the advance reviews of Scream 4 from the Australian screening via Roadshow Films. But thank thee lord, this is not to be the case (I had to take a deep breath and light a cigarette to calm my nerves anyhow before I began reading). Within the last 24 hours, the reviews and Tweets and everything in between has been pouring in and I have yet to read nary a negative response in connection to Scream 4 (these are from uber-fans though, which either makes them bias in their opinions or the perfect barometer for the film's strengths and faults, depending on your perspective). If advance word of mouth is to be believed, it would appear as though Kevin Williamson, Wes Craven and Co. have really outdone themselves this time; fashioning a triumphant return to Scream's bloody, acerbic world that respects what came before and honors what the fans have wanted while simultaneously turning everything on its head in a gloriously brutal, emotional, funny, tension filled "mind fuck" of a film. Yes, I keep coming across that phrasing in relation to the film's story, "mind fuck" (one review going so far as to compare the film's script turns to plot twists from television's brain-bending LOST). Really? A Scream film a "mind fuck"? As if I couldn't be more intrigued. The fact remains however (cynical lad that I am), I'm doing everything within my power to refrain from getting too excited as I would hate for the hype to outshine the reality. Though, as I read more and more about the film, my willpower to remain staunchly blank faced and impartial is getting increasingly harder to maintain. The Thursday night / Friday morning midnight screening that I plan on attending couldn't get here fast enough.
- The leading authority on all things Scream related, Scream-Trilogy.net has posted their advance, spoiler free review which you can read here. Additionally, they are hosting the live, streaming red carpet premier here.
- (Updated) Fangoria's Samuel Zimmerman has lukewarm things to say about Scream 4, sadly. You can read his review here.
- (Updated) Joshua Miller over at CHUD.com has an equally middle of the road review, chalking Scream 4 up to "meh"
- (Updated) While DreadCentral's Andrew Kasch has slightly better things to say about it.
- (Updated) A man who has been entrenched in all things Scream lately, Shock Till You Drop's Ryan Turek (writer and director of Still Screaming: The Ultimate Scary Movie Retrospective) just posted his review, and though he finds faults with the film, his final vote lands on the positive side.
- (Updated) Rotten Tomatoes began compiling it's collection of Scream 4 reviews earlier today, and though there are more than a few harsh words spoken of it (and it has been yo-yoing back and forth from "rotten" to "fresh") it is at the moment "certifiably fresh" with a consensus of 61% (the original Scream maintains a score of 82% while Scream 2 possesses a 81% rating and Scream 3 a dismal 37%). Personally, when it comes to horror films I am less than interested in what mainstream critics have to say about them (unless of course, they are good things) seeing as how the genre is almost always disrespected for the very things that we fright fans love about it. I'll use the general critics' opinions as an advisory compass of sorts, but seldom do I take their conclusions to heart. Consider this your advisory compass. Cherry pick their words accordingly because one shouldn't forget how they usually look down their noses at anything with a body count.
- (Updated) Bloody-Disgusting's Brad Mishka (aka Mr. Disgusting, who oftentimes I very much disagree with) has very kind things to say about the movie here
- Concurrently, Glenn Dunks over at StalePopcorn has posted his very glowing review (also spoiler free) and though he admits that Scream 4 isn't a perfect film, he also makes grand statements such as this one: "[Scream 4] could perhaps rank as the greatest franchise revival in cinema history". Wow. Wrap that sucker up, I'll take it.
Meanwhile, sentiments such as these having been flooding Glenn's Twitter account:
"I'm almost at a loss for words. It's so bloody good! Bloody being the apt word. Amazing. Amazing!"
"Scream 4 saves its sharpest knives for its audience. Best US horror sequel in years. Take a bow."
"Well and truly worth the wait. Fans of the original will be well served by this sequel/reboot. All hail!"
"It's really legitimately good. The final act is some of the craziest cinema I've seen in AAAAGES!"
"A right ol' swift kick to the balls. Done by people who know what they're doing. Showing how to do a sequel RIGHT."
"Respect to Scream 4! After nearly a decade of gore and torture but few thrills, great horror finally returns. Jumpy & satirical fun had by all!"
Honestly, the beaming positivity and enthusiasm for what the Australian audience just witnessed goes on and on and on. So what of you dear readers? Are you excited yet?