ARROW IN THE HEAD REVIEWS

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Scream 2 (1997)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Wes Craven

Starring:
Neve Campbell/Sydney
Courteney Cox/Gale
David Arquette/Dewey
Jamie Kennedy/Randy
5 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
The release of a movie (called Stab) based on the events that happened in the original Scream unleashes a copycat killer and he's after Sydney (Campbell). This gal can't catch a break!
THE LOWDOWN
Scream 2 likes to poke fun at the sequel complex and ironically it suffers from exactly the same thing that it disparages. We get more gore, we get a higher body count but what we don't get is the focus and the tightness of the original. This one feels all over the place (story wise)…stalk sequence here, insignificant character gets killed there…who cares! The story is definitely weaker.

In the first film, I kept going back and forth on who the killer was because I suspected everybody, so there was this feeling of steady tension all the time. Here the killer (s) comes out of left field and the continuous tension the first one gave out is totally absent.

The characters themselves are not all that interesting either. The returning folks from the original are kool but the new ones are bland and hardly developed. I didn't care about Derek (Jerry O'Connell), Mickey (Timothy Olyphant) or Cotton (Shreiber). Where's Billy (Skeet Ulrich) and Stu (Matthew Lillard) when you need them???

Also, the cap-off in the original made sense and was so gnarly. Here the killer (or killers…I won't tell) has a so-so motive (s), suffers from overacting and would be more comfortable in a Scooby Doo episode than a hip slasher flick. I also hated the setting in which the conclusion took place. Keep that whole Greek mythology crap away from me Williamson...Arrow ain't down.

All is not lost though. The kills are kool, the suspense is there and we get references galore (to sequels, to the African-Americans' place in the genre, to the TV show Friends and much more…). We also get lots of cameos (you spot them), a great phone conversation between Randy (Kennedy) and the killer and even a few nods Friday The 13th's way. But overall, this sequel feels exactly like what it is…a sequel. There to cash in on the success of the original. I scream: ENOUGH!!!
GORE
Bloody stabbing, bullets to the head…the usual stuff but with more Karo syrup.
ACTING
Neve Campbell (Sydney), Courteney Cox (Gale), David Arquette (Dewey) and Jamie Kennedy (Randy) do good but nothing new is brought in. At least Jamie Kennedy gets to have some fun. Jerry O'Connell (Derek) bored me as the jock…should've cast Paul Walker (The Skulls) instead. Timothy Olyphant (Mickey) has great hair but his character is weak. Liev Shreiber (Cotton) does his Dustin Hoffman thang again and it's already old. Sarah Michelle Gellar (CC) is there long enough to die. Laurie Metcalf (Debbie) should learn subtlety. Jada Pinkett (Maureen) is so annoying, even when she's bleeding to death. Omar Epps (Phil) is a kool dude, too bad he gets wasted so fast.
T & A
Lots of tight tops (Courteney Cox looks great in that white top) but still no money shots.
DIRECTING
Craven does well again, injecting the suspense scenes with lots of tension. It's too bad the film feels disjointed, half the characters are weak and the ending is crap.
SOUNDTRACK
The "Dewey" theme bothered me. Not because it's bad but because it's the score from John Woo's "Broken Arrow". Every time I heard it I thought of John Travolta. Didn't work for me. The soundtrack is ok but not nearly as groovy as the one in the first.
BOTTOM LINE
It smells like a sequel, it acts like a sequel…it is a sequel. For a flick that's so self aware I would have thought it could've avoided the "sequel" pitfalls…it doesn't. It's not a bad time but it's nothing exceptional either. Just see the first one again. NOTE: That whole "Dewey never dies shite" is played out…kill the bastard already!!! NOTE 2: Here was the perfect chance to kill Joshua Jackson and Rebecca Gayheart…two birds with one stone…the movie misses the boat…DAMN!!!!
BULL'S EYE
The girl that talks to Sarah Michelle Gellar (CC) on the phone is none other than her Cruel Intentions co-star Selma Blair.

CC is actually Courteney Cox's nickname.

The cast didn't know who the killer was up until they shot the last scene. They didn't have the last 10 pages of the script till the end.
Strikeback
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3:08PM on 05/31/2011
definitely agree with you, arrow. i saw this at a sneak in vegas in 97 and really enjoyed it. but revisiting it today was a big disappointment. it's REALLY slow and very disjointed. quite often just feels like it's going nowhere. although i did enjoy looking at portia de rossi.
definitely agree with you, arrow. i saw this at a sneak in vegas in 97 and really enjoyed it. but revisiting it today was a big disappointment. it's REALLY slow and very disjointed. quite often just feels like it's going nowhere. although i did enjoy looking at portia de rossi.
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2:10PM on 05/14/2011
Gotta disagree with the review here. While the story isn't as tightly wound as the first film it still manages to generate to same suspense and mystery imo. While most of the supporting cast was meh, the original cast shinned through and most of them got some decent character development. I also loved all the red herrings the story through at us. The Ghostface here isn't as showy or theatrical as the the first Ghostface(s) and he (or she) are a bit more sneaky which I liked. While the big
Gotta disagree with the review here. While the story isn't as tightly wound as the first film it still manages to generate to same suspense and mystery imo. While most of the supporting cast was meh, the original cast shinned through and most of them got some decent character development. I also loved all the red herrings the story through at us. The Ghostface here isn't as showy or theatrical as the the first Ghostface(s) and he (or she) are a bit more sneaky which I liked. While the big reveal isn't to hot, it made sense enough for me to go with it and not scoff. A great sequel imo.
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10:09PM on 06/30/2010
I re-watched this film, and it has grown on me QUITE a bit! I actually have grown to really like this film. Sidney is still a great heroine and Gale is an AWESOME character and Dewey, while starting to get old, is still a fun character. The suspense is there and this film has one of the best chase scenes ever. Like the first film I couldn't guess who the killer was and the directing is fantastic and even though it's a sequel, it still felt a bit fresh. The script poked a lot of fun at
I re-watched this film, and it has grown on me QUITE a bit! I actually have grown to really like this film. Sidney is still a great heroine and Gale is an AWESOME character and Dewey, while starting to get old, is still a fun character. The suspense is there and this film has one of the best chase scenes ever. Like the first film I couldn't guess who the killer was and the directing is fantastic and even though it's a sequel, it still felt a bit fresh. The script poked a lot of fun at sequels and the African American's place in the horror genre. The acting is great and the score is once again brilliant. And it wouldn't be a Scream movie without the obligatory opening death sequence. It's grand, theatrical, big, and it works, although it doesn't live up to the first film's.
But sadly, this is NOT the classic the first film is. The returning four characters are all great and I like where they bring Sidney. She is a survivor, but now she doesn't know who to trust. But...the new characters are all lame. Hallie pales to Tatum and was rather annoying. Derek, the new boyfriend, is VERY bland and boring (plus that song sequence - WTF?! That was out of place), and Mickey is the best of the new friends but even he felt like a Randy imitation. At least he was fun. Then they completely wasted a great Sarah Michelle Gellar; I feel she could have been a great character with an awesome scene. Don't get me started on her stalk/death scene! It's fuckin' retarded...then we have the ending...I like some of the ideas, but the reveal of the killers were lacklusting.
But in the end I still like this sequel. It has grown on me over the years.
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8:38PM on 10/02/2006
This is a pretty weak sequel, but it has its moments. I enjoyed how it parodied sequels the way the original parodied horror in general. Still, the twist is lame and the plot was weakly structured.
This is a pretty weak sequel, but it has its moments. I enjoyed how it parodied sequels the way the original parodied horror in general. Still, the twist is lame and the plot was weakly structured.
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