Like lots of people, I remembered “Scream” as being humorous. However after I not too long ago rewatched the movie I used to be barely greatly surprised at how brutal all of it is, particularly throughout the opening scene. Barrymore makes Casey a really likable character; we do not wish to watch her get butchered. Casting a recognizable face like Barrymore additionally lends itself to the character — we really feel like we already know her! She’s Drew Barrymore! And he or she’s at risk!
The opening kill has change into one thing of a cliche for the “Scream” franchise at this level, however in 1996, it felt recent and completely different. Barrymore was featured on the poster, so it might be assumption that she would have a giant half to play within the movie. Not so — she will get got rid of earlier than the title card. However it’s the way it occurs that actually units the stage for “Scream.” Casey is flirty with the killer at first — she would not know he is a killer, in any case. And the temper of the sequence shifts subtly, rising extra horrifying with every passing second. After which there’s the violence — poor Steve actually spills his guts, and shortly Casey will meet the sharp finish of the knife as effectively. To make issues all of the extra excruciating, she comes very near getting away, sprinting outdoors of her home searching for assist.
However Ghostface tackles her outdoors, and right here, Craven attracts the kill out. The slasher is first toying together with his sufferer earlier than embracing savage violence, and we’re pressured to look at every painful minute as Casey grows increasingly bloody from her numerous knife wounds. Craven actually twists the knife in by having Casey’s dad and mom return residence solely to listen to their daughter’s gargled, guttural demise cries because the life drains out of her — after which discover her physique hanging from a swing set. It is extraordinarily upsetting stuff, under no circumstances the kind of enjoyable, foolish kill we often affiliate with a slasher film. Somebody has taken their love of scary motion pictures too far, certainly.