Bloody, funny Scream 4

Meta-horror franchise thrills again a decade later

Rule number one: there are no rules in the latest Scream installment. A Facebook-savvy murderer reenacts the serial stabbings of the first Ghostface Killer when Sydney Prescott (Neve Campbell) returns to Woodsboro as a bestselling author. Updating the cultural allusions, director Wes Craven and writer Kevin Williamson round up the original Scream team in this nostalgic comedy/horror movie. It’s right at home with the trilogy, despite the lapse of a decade---horror movie references and disemboweled bodies to boot. And where it lacks the low-budget kitsch of the original, it lives up to the humour of its predecessors. But the “self-aware post-modern meta shit,” to quote the movie, finally becomes overbearing---the joke runs thin when explained too many times.

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