By Trylon volunteer Collette Ricci
Scream is not only a good horror movie (or a very well executed meta-horror for that matter) it’s a movie that epically snubbed a terrible trope that had dominated the horror genre for too long.
Early 80s slasher movies set the tone for modern horror. Those movies usually featured co-ed casts of kids, doing rebellious and risque stuff, being hunted by a murdering maniac. Emulators of the time quickly boiled that formula down to: promiscuous teens get hunted by a maniac. Within a few years, that idea had been distilled even further, to the point that women appearing on screen weren’t much more than an excuse to see a pair of boobs. Scream not only addressed those tropes throughout the film’s dialogue, it tackled them head on in actions and character development as well.
The women in Scream are complex, they deal with death and loss, they have appropriate character driven reactions, they possess physical strength, they help each other, and they grow as characters. In the end women even come to each others ultimate rescue, even though there are badly injured dudes near by who (when traditionally written in horror movies) could have swooped in and saved the day. Basically, watching this movie is the cinematic equivalent of winning an argument with your misogynistic co-worker in front of his friends.
And I know I glossed over it, but Scream is a good movie! Interesting plot twists (that set up the sequel nicely), good pacing, believable acting, a compelling script, and a seasoned horror director cement this as one of my favorite horror movies. The fact that all these things happen in a world where people actually have seen horror movies, and act accordingly, is just icing on an already lovely cake.
Colette Ricci hasn’t had a cigarette in six years, but every time she watches someone in a film light a cigarette, she inhales with them.
Scream plays at the Trylon Friday and Saturday, October 3 and 4 at 7:00 and 9:15, and Sunday October 5 at 5:00 and 7:15. Advance tickets here.