Quick-Thoughts: Wes Craven’s Scream 2 (1997)

That awkward moment when Wes Craven predicts The Haunting of Sharon Tate (2019).

I’m almost convinced that Scream 2 exists in a universe where everybody in this town besides Neve Campbell and her colleagues are psychopaths conspiring to participate in ritualizing their slow demises. I mean, why else would nobody be around every-time they’re in danger running around a ginormous college campus or crashing cars in open-view public? Like those boom-boxers especially, man; that’s right! I’ve got my eyes on you, three! 

I was so on board with this movie for its first two enjoyable acts that it pains me to say how disappointed I was by its final (and unusually long) one. Commentating on how the media and entertainment industry selfishly feeds off of tragic incidents is such a Wes Craven-esc concept for a Scream sequel that I was so interested to see where it would go, until the commentary just got abandoned for a conclusion which more so tributes classic B-rated slasher movies and even its own predecessor rather than making fun of them in non-predictable ways. It’s bloody amazing too how the characters only get dumber and dumber as the film goes along, so obviously at the expediency of having their “big” reveals stick out at the last second. I wouldn’t even have been mad if they just blatantly called out how typical slasher-esc the film started becoming once it got to the climax, but it totally overlooked how much it was indulging in the clichés that the franchise ironically strives to poke jabs at. 

Speaking of which, WOW did those twists SUCK. At first I was like, why would the killer end up just being some person we barely spent any time establishing to care enough for, and then also have the second killer (cause there always has to be a partner) be the one everybody assumed was going to be the killer from the moment they appeared on screen? And then I thought, oh, the movie is going to turn it around and call these quirky reveals “meta” or something since it works as a basic reverse-psychology subversion of our expectations, but it turns out it just genuinely thought it was being clever. LOL! 

Anyways, I hope there’s a follow-up to ‘96 Neve Campbell (titled: ‘97 NEVE CAMPBELL) since this sequel exists. If you get the reference, I love you.

Verdict: C+

Wes Craven Ranked

“Scream 2” is now available to stream on HBO Max.

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