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Scream 3 (2000)

The most terrifying scream is always the last.

Rating: 3/10

Running Time: 116 minutes

UK Certificate: 18


Throw another insipid power ballad onto the CD player – it’s time for ‘Scream 3’. Where were we? Well, in the words of Craig David, allow me to “fill you in”. ‘Scream’ was the horror movie sensation of 1996, setting itself up as the ultimate in self-referential knowingness and delivering plenty of Wes Craven’s trademark shocks along the way. ‘Scream 2’, released a year later, also contained its fair share of frighteners, but was a major let-down on practically every other front. Now, climbing yet another couple of rungs down the quality ladder, we’ve got ‘Scream 3’, a pile of steaming plopsy if ever there was one.

Sure, Neve Campbell for some reason signed up to complete the trilogy. So too did fellow go-the-distancers Courteney Cox and David Arquette. But dear oh dear, they must have been hanging their Hollywood heads in shame after wrapping up this hokum. Or if they weren’t, they should have been.

The flick takes place on the set of the made-up movie ‘Stab 3’, where a bloke in a strangely-familiar ghost mask is making a nuisance of himself by running around murdering members of the cast and crew. So our three franchise survivors, like the do-gooders they are, try to use their past gruesome experiences to help catch the killer – but before you can say “none of this even makes any sense,” they’re on the top of his hit list. And that’s “hit” with a capital “S”.

Wes Craven knows good and well how to shock an audience using his trusty well-worn catalogue of generic conventions, so I can only assume it was actually his ‘Newsround’-presenting brother John who really helmed this one. There’s not a single genuine scare to be had for the entire lacklustre 116 minutes, the cast all look like they’d rather be elsewhere (particularly Campbell, who doesn’t even ATTEMPT one of her token forced facial expressions this time round), and the gaping stab wounds left by the slasher are never any match for the giant holes in the plot. ‘Scream 3’ isn’t even fit to mop up the original movie’s mess.

It's Got: Carrie Fisher playing – you’ve guessed it – a failed actress who’s sick of being mistaken for Carrie Fisher. Yes, yes, very bloody clever. Excuse me while I vom.

It Needs: Courteney Cox to sort her fringe out – and fast.

DVD Extras Out-takes and deleted scenes, a behind-the-scenes montage, an alternate ending, Wes’ audio commentary, cast & crew bios, a couple of theatrical trailers, and a Creed music video (oh Jeez). DVD Extras Rating: 7/10


When the only thing remotely scary about a so-called horror movie turns out to be Courteney Cox’s wig, you know it’s been a long two hours.