Film Review – Scream VI (2023)

Title – Scream VI (2023) 

Directors – Matt Bettinelli-Olpin & Tyler Gillett (Ready or Not)

Cast – Melissa Barrera, Courteney Cox, Jenna Ortega, Hayden Panettiere, Samara Weaving, Dermot Mulroney

Plot – Ghostface is back once more, this time terrorizing New York City with a spate of grisly murders. 

“New York. New rules”

Review by Eddie on 10/03/2023

Proving once more that you just can’t keep a good masked serial killer down, hot on the heels of last years Scream success, directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett (part of the filmmaking collective known as Radio Silence and the men in charge of the long-gestating Escape From New York remake) return once more to the Wes Craven created world of Ghostface, this time around moving the brutal knife led carnage from the quiet town of Woodsboro to the hustling and bustling streets of New York City. 

Once more centered around Melissa Barrera and Jenna Ortega’s sisters Sam and Tara Carpenter who have moved to the big apple with their closest friends in hopes of escaping the past events in their lives that led them to come face to face with Ghostface and their blood connection to the happenings of the original Scream in 1996. 

Moving locations from the oft-used Woodsboro to New York is a good move for the film, finally giving us a chance to escape the clutches of the small-town tropes that have littered the franchise since Craven’s break out original but sadly for Scream VI a locational change-up isn’t enough to cover over all the films cracks that while less prominent than last years overrated new entry are still evident here, holding Scream VI back from becoming a competitor to the great original that the series has always grasped at without being able to hold onto to. 

There’s certainly a lot of grisly and inventive carnage here, make no doubt about it, Scream VI is one of the most brutal and unrelenting entries yet when it comes to the bloodthirsty department, but so much of the film feels like it’s rehashing old ground, offering very little in the way of surprises or intrigue, while our collection of somewhat likable but also highly frustrating characters don’t make for the most enduring of company across the films too long in the tooth two hour runtime. 

Talented performers in their own right, Barrera and Ortega share a solid on screen chemistry but as the films main heroines and also targets of Ghostface’s newest plot for bloodshed and terror, they don’t get a whole lot to work with as they go back and forward and bicker about how to move forward from the past but deal with their current predicament, a predicament that often see’s people survive impossible to escape from situations or alternatively moments where you feel as though the culprit could’ve been dealt with/dispatched of multiple times throughout the films various set pieces. 

Six films into this series that just somehow keeps managing to find new ways for someone to don the mask and robe and keep the murders coming, it’s hard to imagine where we head too next, even if this entry is seemingly foreshadowing and setting up where it plans to go too next. With another mid-tier effort such as this it is perhaps best for all that Ghostface finally be retired for good, but as you know, you just can’t seem to keep a good masked serial killer down. 

Final Say – 

The move to New York adds an element of freshness to yet another formula following Scream film. A slight improvement on 2022’s overrated entry, Scream VI has elements that are sure to please long time fans and newbies alike but as a whole, it feels as though this property has run out of ways to justify anymore new additions from here on out. 

2 1/2 ladders out of 5 

12 responses to “Film Review – Scream VI (2023)

  1. It’s a tired franchise but if teens flock to see stabbings and dismemberments then they’ll keep on producing them. This isn’t horror as such just creative ways to kill people. There are ways to scare people without resorting to graphic violence.

    • Yeh there is very little horror at all in this series now, all about the imaginative killings and bloodshed. Looks like its pulling it more money than ever though so their onto something!

  2. I’m a horror movie fan but I’ve never been able to get into the Scream series. The first was kind of interesting with the reveal but beyond that it just seemed almost cookie cutter comical with some gore tossed in to try to make it “horror”, which makes me agree with Steven’s comment. I was hoping to read there was something new and better but sounds like the same. Thanks for the review and saving me some time on this one.

    • I did really enjoy the first entry as many did but I have struggled ever since. I liked this one more than last years entry but I still feel like its not as clever as many claim it to be as whole.

  3. See, I disagree here, sir! Been watching in the cinema since 1997 and while I think the ‘uncloaking’ is always an anti-climax, if you know the format, I really enjoyed a few switches throughout, and that unexpectedly upped brutality.
    Scream’s actually the reason I started watching horror, not a fan of the horrifically pointless torture/style, so these meta-cross-overs move with the times, and reflect the era, which is why I love all that in-film-shizz.
    It’s a different element of the genre, and that’s why horror itself is such a smorgasbord of adventure.
    Love the deep psychological ones, love indie attempts, but also really enjoy this breakout that drifts cleverly inbetween the reality of a situation, and down-right ridiculousness.

  4. Well, I can’t say I am surprised. I am sure Ortega’s presence will guarantee some extra butts on those cinema seats. The girl is awesome.

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