Scream ★★★★★

“Nostalgia: it’s delicate, but potent. Teddy told me that, in Greek, ‘nostalgia’ literally means ‘the pain from an old wound.’ It’s a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. This device isn’t a spaceship. It’s a time machine. It goes backwards and forwards. It takes us to a place where we ache to go again. It’s not called the wheel. It’s called the carousel. It lets us travel the way a child travels, around and around and back home again, to a place where we know we are loved.”

When you live and breathe movies, as many of us do, you inevitably take some of them for granted. I hadn’t seen Scream in at least a decade, maybe even longer, mostly because I know it front-to-back and beat-for-beat, yet here I am, this longtime horror head whispering “oh my god” to themself, over and over again as the credits roll. This film has seeped into my life, my lexicon, and my creative work in ways I had never realized until tonight. We live in an age when cinema readily and repeatedly deals in nostalgia, and sometimes that can be valuable, but let me tell you that I wasn’t prepared for this relatively casual rewatch to make me feel the way The Force Awakens wanted to make every Star Wars fan feel as I rediscovered it. Scream is nothing less than the Pulp Fiction of its genre, a masterwork of suspense and misdirection, legitimately terrifying at all times, brutally hilarious whenever it chooses to be, and stunningly perceptive in its “someone you know” approach to violence against women. I can’t believe it exists, and I can’t believe I’m saying that about a film I once saw a million times, a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.

“Not in my movie.”

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