The Craft (1996)

Directed By – Andrew Fleming

Screenplay By – Peter Filardi & Andrew Fleming

Cinematography By – Alexander Gruszynski

Starring Robin Tunney, Fairuza Balk & Neve Campbell

101 min.

I remember watching The Craft when I was a young kid and thinking it was a really really good witch movie. Eh, I was young. The Craft is okay. It has a lot of plot holes. Really the third act of this movie makes little sense and is rather annoying.

There’s nothing special about The Craft and I don’t see myself revisiting this one anytime soon. Or ever again for that matter. It’s a cool idea, four high witches, but you have a good witch, two neutral witches, and a bad witch. But if that’s the case why do both of the neutral wicthes turn bad instantly. There’s no progression to their evilness, they just become evil! Like that! Oh, is that how people work? One day I’m like yeah I do a little good, maybe something not so good every once in a while and then BAM I’m evil. And the evil witch is mean, but then instantly becomes a murderer?! And yet the good witch had a slow progression? The movie has a lot of consistency issues.

If you want to reminisce about the 90s and you remember The Craft fondly, sure put this on, but that’s on you.

Scream (1996)

Directed By – Wes Craven

Screenplay By – Kevin Williamson

Cinematography By – Mark Irwin

Starring Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox & David Arquette

111 min.

As anyone who has watched multiple sequels in a row without having started with the original, I had to come back to the first Scream after watching 2 and 3. This movie is just so far and away better than its sequels it’s not even funny. The opening scene with Drew Barrymore is a piece of horror cinema gold (and my personal favorite work Ms. Barrymore has ever done) and then Craven just keeps on delivering in scene after scene, if only he had delivered in Scream after Scream.

The post-modern element to this movie is also fantastic and at this point it was also original. Jamie Kennedy is spot on as the geeky horror movie nut who dissects each situation through the formula driven horror genre. But there are also little things like Barrymore saying the first A Nightmare on Elm Street is a classic but all the others sucked which is filled with humor as Craven (director of Scream) only directed the first Elm Street. Or how the high school janitor named “Freddy” is dressed in the same sweater and khaki pants as Freddy Kruger.

What really makes this one surpass the other installments is that while it does have elements of humor it still takes itself very seriously. There is a real story that unfolds, characters change and grow, hell it is a real movie! The sequels lose these vital elements and become merely multiple ways of doing one scene.

I will end with the fact that because this one is done more seriously than the others it is a mix of awesome and hysterical every time Ghostface gets beat up (glass bottles thrown at him, flowers vases broken over his head, etc.). He takes more of a beating than any horror villain ever and it is wonderful.

Scream 3 (2000)

Directed By – Wes Craven

Screenplay By – Ehren Kruger

Cinematography By – Peter Deming

Starring Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox & David Arquette

116 min.

The third installment in the Scream franchise tried to be too smart for its own good. In reality it’s a subpar movie that doesn’t come close to the fun of the second or the brilliance of the first. There is not much to say about Scream 3 besides it’s not very good. Even the opening scene doesn’t have the fun factor that the first two open up with. The story is rather pathetic and kind of ruins the first one for me (only if I want to really invest myself in the story those in charged decided these characters will go through). It tries way too hard to be the last movie in, I guess at the time Craven thought would be, a trilogy. It doesn’t have those young familiar faces that made the second a lot of fun and it definitely doesn’t have most of the elements that made the first a classic.

I guess it’s worth watching if you’re like me and are just curious as to how they would do a third and like watching Sidney Prescott be terrorized. I will say that this movie has a ghost motif that is pretty spooky. Other than that this movie is kind of a dud.

Scream 2 (1997)

Directed By – Wes Craven

Screenplay By – Kevin Williamson

Cinematography By – Peter Deming

Starring Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox & David Arquette

120 min.

Scream being one of my favorite scary movies (yes that statement is full of irony and I love it) I thought it was time to invest in its sequels. Scream 2 is basically a doubly post-modern version of the first installment and is half as good. It is fun though. The problem with this one is that the end reveal just isn’t nearly as cool as the end reveal of the first. It does deliver on typical scares but it seams like the first is just superior in every aspect. If you love the first and want more story featuring these characters this does exactly that, but don’t be fooled, it’s not the first Scream.

Probably the best part of Scream 2 is the cast of young recognizable faces including Jada Pinkett Smith, Omar Epps (from House M.D.), Heather Graham, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Joshua Jackson, Timothy Olyphant, and Jerry O’Connell. This cast of young celebrities gives this movie a fun nostalgia to add to the violence.