www.whyville.net Jul 12, 2009 Weekly Issue

Times Writer

Movie Review: Scream

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The Cast

Neve Campbell - Sydney Prescott
Skeet Ulrich - Billy Loomis
Courtney Cox - Gale Weathers
David Arquette - Deputy Dwight (Dewey) Riley
Matthew Lillard - Stuart (Stu) Macher
Jamie Kennedy - Randy Meeks
Rose McGowan - Tatum Riley
Lawrence Hecht - Neil Prescott
Liev Shreiber - Cotton Weary
Drew Barrymore - Casey Becker
Kevin Parick Walls - Steve Orth

The Plot

One night, Casey Becker and her boyfriend Steve Orth are brutally murdered by a masked killer at Casey's house. The peaceful town of Woodsboro is no stranger to brutal murders and this is not the first to occur. Just last year, Maureen Roberts-Prescott was brutally murdered and raped by Cotton Weary. Her daughter, Sydney's witness statement lead to the sentencing of Cotton Weary on death row. Sydney Prescott attends the same high school as Casey and Steve. Soon, she too is targeted by the masked killer who attempts to kill her in her house. Sydney's boyfriend Billy Loomis is found at her home and arrested on suspicion. While he is in custody, Sydney receives a strange phone call and recognizes the voice as the masked killer's. She begins to doubt the witness statement she gave at her mother's trial and believes her mother's killer is still free. She also believes the masked killer is the one who murdered her mother, and now wants to kill her.

Sydney's best friend Tatum Riley is by her side, helping her not to focus on her mother's death. Gale Weathers is a tabloid reporter who seeks fame. Last year she covered the murder of Sydney's mother and wrote a book about it. This year, she is reporting on the strange killings and wants to solve the mystery. Deputy Dwight (Dewey) Riley is also trying to solve the mystery. Could Billy Loomis have something to do with the crimes? Sydney's father, Neil Prescott, left for a business meeting in a different city the night Casey and Steve were killed. Sydney hasn't been able to reach him since. Could Neil Prescott be the killer behind the ghost mask? Sydney's friend Randy Meeks is a horror movie expert and seems to know how to commit the perfect crime. Could Randy be the killer? Everyone is a suspect and Sydney is dying to learn the truth.

The Criticism

Most of the actors were well cast. As the leading lady, Neve Campbell was every kind of woman - gullible, smart and strong. Courtney Cox was great as the mean and selfish Gale Weathers. I enjoyed David Arquette's portrayal of the scrawny Dewey. Matthew Lillard was fantastic as Stu, Tatum's insane boyfriend. However, I didn't find Skeet Ulrich's performance up to par. He has his moments but I wish he had more of them. For instance, instead of being creepy and paranoid when Sydney was suspicious, he could have been more deceptive.

In conclusion, Scream is a smart horror movie. It has everything - gore, sex, and mystery. Scream is directed by Wes Craven, who is the mastermind director behind famed horror movies such as The Hills Have Eyes (1977) and A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). This is a very smart movie that keeps you on the edge of your seat. The murders occur suddenly and shockingly. Scream coerces the audience to try and solve the mystery along with the characters. Though the mystery is solved by the end of the film, you realize the timeline of events on your own. Scream was followed by two sequels, Scream 2 and Scream 3, and more are in talks. But none of them can measure up to the horror and mystery that is Scream.



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