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Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
18
Cast
Neve Campbell
David Arquette
Courteney Cox Arquette
Patrick Dempsey
Scott Foley
Jenny McCarthy
Parker Posey
Lance Henriksen
Courteney Cox.
Directors
Wes Craven.
Screenwriters
Kevin Williamson
Ehren Kruger.
Running Time
118 minutes

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Scream 3
The franchise of death relocates to the City Of Angels.


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Plot
All bets are off in this final installment which sees Campbell hiding away as a therapist in the mountains, until she recieves a phonecall informing her of the murders of the cast of 'Stab 3'. With every body, there is a picture of her mother, prompting another whodunnit, and why, investigation.


Review
One of the most memorable - not to mention memorably 'ironic' - moments in 'Scream 2' occurs when a class of soon-to-be-chopped-liver students discuss whether film sequels can ever improve on the original. While the general consensus is that second instalments 'blow', there are just enough examples given of films which do actually better their cinematic predecessors to suggest that 'Scream 2' itself might have a chance of joining them. Moreover, although this eventually proves to be not quite true, at least it isn't embarrassingly wide off the mark, either.

It comes as little surprise, however, that no one in Wes Craven's third Scream outing makes a similar case for second sequels. After all, this time around, the knife-centric action has moved from sleepy Woodsboro to Hollywood, where everyone knows that any film with a number above 2 in its title has a good chance of sucking so much that even passing vacuum cleaners stand around and applaud.

Not that 'Scream 3' attempts to hide its chronological status. Chief irony-monger Kevin Williamson may have abandoned script-writing duties to concentrate on his directing'ôcareer' - not so 'funny' now is it, Kev? - but replacement Ehren Kruger (no relation) is hardly a slouch when it comes to finding the inverted comma on his keypad.

As a result, during one of the film's ultra-rare action breaks, Campbell is treated to a posthumous video lecture from film nerd/comic relief/'Scream 2' victim Randy Meeks (Jamie Kennedy) who informs her that, in the final part of a trilogy, all bets are off and that even the most entrenched of series characters can expect a visit from The Grim Reaper.

Plotwise - predictably - the now standard murder is just the start of the mayhem, and soon the rest of Stab's cast of young good-looking actors are being slaughtered like, well, young good-looking actors in a schlock horror movie. It is a turn of events that attracts the attention of first tabloid hack Gale Weathers (Cox) and then Sidney Prescott (Campbell) who, following the events of 'Scream 2', has secreted herself away as a counsellor in some remote backwoods.

And so the gore-soaked stage is set for fun frolics and fear with Arquette, Cox and Campbell once more dodging the attentions of our Munch-loving maniac, whoever he may be this time. Indeed, one of the strangely under-acknowledged aspects of the Scream series is that they owe every bit as much to the traditional Agatha Christie 'whodunnit?' as they do the slasher genre.

Certainly, one of the original movie's most accomplished moves was the way it first made us suspect Skeet Ulrich, then utterly absolved him before turning everything on its head in the peerless final act. This time, though, the finger of suspicion is pointed at so many people that you begin to believe it's only a matter of time before Craven puts himself in the frame.

Moreover, even given the traditions of the genre, it is a little tiring to watch Campbell et al yet again abandon all common sense as they repeatedly split up to wander around darkened corridors on their own. Yet, while not half as scary as its predecessors, 'Scream 3' does go some way to match their yock-quotient, thanks in large part to cameos from Kevin Smith creations 'Jay and Silent Bob', and, best of all, Carrie Fisher - the 'Star Wars' gag is to be truly relished.

The result is a film which may have run out of ideas, but still has energy to spare. One can only hope, though, that Wes really does call it a day now. After all, even 'George' has trouble with those fourth episodes.


Verdict
Still satisfying comedic shclock horror, but the premise is starting to wear a bit thin as the trilogy draws to a close.


Reviewed by Clark Collis

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Scream 3
Empire Star Rating

"Someone is trying to ruin my movie. Someone wants to kill my movie."

Another disappointing entry in a once promising franchise, Scream 3 brings little new to the table, keeping this from being anything above average. A few words of wisdom: stick to the far scarier, far funnier, far superior original. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by movienut707 at 17:24, 29 October 2013 | Report This Post


Scream 3

I don't understand what went wrong! Scream 2 left the series on a high and a shock with the death of the awesome Randy being a moving point we couldn't forget. But then comes along Scream 3, which WAS NOT written by Williamson, and suddenly all the humour from the first two is lost. Craven puts up a valiant effort as do the cast, but the script becomes too predictable and falls flat. A rubbish waste of a series and the worse yet! Craven gets points for allowing me to give the film one star,... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by The Grimeanator at 20:38, 07 August 2012 | Report This Post


1 star!

lets be fair, it wasnt that bad was it ? it could have been worse, even though it is the bleakest from the four but it still is a good film but unfortunaly doesnt live up to the rest ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by jackcarlin18 at 15:50, 22 January 2012 | Report This Post


fun, but not at all scary...

or even particularly that good. The biggest problem with 3 is that the cast are all awful, Posey especially and also the killer. When Mickey was unmasked as the killer in Scream 2, he was still scary, like wise for both the killers in the original but not so much here. Also these set-pieces have no place in a horror film, for example, the scene where the killer faxes in his threats before some dude takes HIMSELF? out with a gas explosion is the most un-scream-like scene of the trilogy (so far). ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by tysmuse at 00:47, 11 April 2011 | Report This Post


All Bets Are Off

This is a rarity a threequel that still feels fresh original and funny. Despite Wiliamson Ditching the movie Scream 3 is still up there with the first two. Also is it just a coinsedence that Wes worked with a writer whose Surname is Kruger? ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by S1lent B0b at 22:11, 30 May 2010 | Report This Post


When i watched scream 2 i thought

can't be worst, but now i know that can be worts ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by shady_88 at 20:01, 20 April 2009 | Report This Post


Nailbitting But Funny.

I have only seen a few minutes of the first Scream movie, I heard that it was scary but funny along the way. When I bought this at my local shop and watched it with my sister, we were glued of who could be the man under that evil Scream mask and would Neve Cambell get with dishy Patrick Dempsey. I won't spoil who it is but they do get together and how! Very good, nailbitting and quite funny. I like. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by joanna likes films at 15:05, 18 April 2008 | Report This Post


not quite as good as the first or the second but still very good ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by casino at 16:59, 03 July 2007 | Report This Post


barren waste

rather find blood in my toilet bowl than sit through this piffle again.. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by cadz at 22:22, 11 March 2007 | Report This Post


barren waste

rather find blood in my toilet bowl than sit through this piffle again.. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by cadz at 22:22, 11 March 2007 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

Just got to wonder what would have happend if Kevin Williamson had wrote 3 and had the production of Stab 3 taking place in Woodsburrow at the loactions from the original film. Plus flashbacks to when Billy and Stu killed Sid's mom. ... More

Posted by ItsMeBilly at 20:25, 11 February 2007 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

I don't think Scream 3 is that bad at all. No it isn't as good as the first and second movies but it is still a good slasher flick, and a much better one than most of them that have been released the past few years. I give it 3/5 ... More

Posted by buffy at 14:05, 11 February 2007 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

a complete waste of time, they should have left it after the second ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Zaphod121 at 22:28, 09 July 2006 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

L: zombiemaster the scream films meant to be funny they make be laughnd how doesthat guy always survive a brutal stabbing is he actually dead walking amoung the living sp; They are a thrillers with sour. That's what makes the films more original than other similar examples. ... More

Posted by BobaJango at 14:13, 09 July 2006 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

Are the scream films meant to be funny they make be laugh. And how doesthat guy always survive a brutal stabbing is he actually dead walking amoung the living ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by zombiemaster at 21:46, 08 July 2006 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

Good post! ... More

Posted by BobaJango at 19:15, 06 July 2006 | Report This Post


RE: RE:

ted from my old film column, so beware SPOILERS and plot information*/b]  Back in the oh-so-distant past, (or the seventies to be precise), slasher movies had their golden age. The dust had settled on the permissive society, and slasher pics showed chirpy teens getting up to all sorts of mischief, and then being swiftly and inventively dispatched by a crazed killer in retribution. Fast forward to the nineties and the prospect of reviving a lucrative sub-genre with more than a hint ... More

Posted by doubleshiny at 16:57, 06 July 2006 | Report This Post


RE:

Scream - 4/5 Scream 2 - 4/5 Scream 3 - 2/5   An ironically pointless sequel! ... More

Posted by BobaJango at 13:20, 03 July 2006 | Report This Post


better than the 2nd one but not as good as the first one ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by casino at 21:19, 02 July 2006 | Report This Post


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