Scream 2 (1997)

The fact that I survived a sneak preview at the stinky Six Forks-- 
with a few hundred gabby teens and not a damn bit of hi-fi sound to 
drown 'em out-- is an accomplishment unto itself.  Too bad the film 
wasn't better.  SCREAM 2 is a hip, hair-raising, self-referential 
snore.  Series' creators Wes Craven (director) and Kevin Williamson 
(writer) have relocated their smash franchise ($39M!) to a sleepy 
college town, where the survivors of the first film (Neve Campbell, 
David Arquette, Courtney Cox, etc.) are being stalked by a copycat 
killer.  (In the inspired but overlong opening, the killer makes 
his/her debut at a raucous, ROCKY HORROR-like premiere of STAB, a 
movie based on the book based on the fictional events of the first 
film.)  Though the number of in-jokes ends up far higher than any 
body count, the boo bits are actually the *more* successful com-
ponent of the movie.  Only intermittenly does Williamson's script 
crackle with enough electric wit to make you forget that you're 
watching a bunch of good-looking bad actors being put through the 
standard slasher motions.  (Or, in the case of the godawful ending, 
an apparent live-action update of "Scooby Doo, Where Are You?")  
With Omar Epps, Rebecca Gayheart, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jamie Ken-
nedy, Laurie Metcalf, Jerry O'Connell, Jada Pinkett, Liev Schrei-
ber, and playing Drew Barrymore in the opening of STAB, Rollergirl 
herself, Heather Graham.  (Rated "R"/120 min.)

Grade: C+

Copyright 1997 Michael J. Legeros
Movie Hell is a trademark of Michael J. Legeros
Originally posted to triangle.movies in MOVIE HELL: December 14, 1997

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