Why Scream is the Best Horror Movie

Image via The Ringer

Image via The Ringer

Kai DeBois, Writer

This article spoils the end of Scream, so if you do not want it to be spoiled, I advise you not to continue reading. 

Scream is a classic horror movie. The movie is so thrilling and full of unexpected moments, so it is no surprise that it’s so popular.

The movie starts off by showing a girl home alone. She gets a phone call from someone she doesn’t know who at first claims they called the wrong number. However, they keep calling, asking her questions. After a little while, the person asks, “What’s your name? I wanna know who I’m looking at.” She feels terrified, as most people would. Then the caller says to look out the window. She finds her boyfriend tied up but not hurt too badly yet. The caller says she can save her boyfriend if she answers a trivia question. She gets the answer wrong. The boyfriend apparently dies, but we don’t see the killer. The girl gets chased and sees that the killer is wearing a costume, specifically a Ghostface costume. From early on in the movie we already have a mystery on our hands and we’re not waiting for exciting things to happen. 

One of the best things about this movie is that it has a  mystery aspect to it so you don’t suspect the ending. The suspense isn’t long and boring like in some movies, though. Something is happening from the very beginning until the very end. The main character, Sydney, gets attacked in her home by the same killer that is wearing the Ghostface costume. She finds her boyfriend at her house after she gets attacked, so she suspects him of being her attacker. He gets held at the police station, but then someone else calls Sydney, threatening to kill her, supposedly proving that her boyfriend isn’t the killer… Only to find out in the end it was him and his friend, Stu. 

The thing that makes Scream so different from other horror movies is comedy. Scream manages to be funny and scary at the same time. The whole movie makes fun of slasher movies, while the characters are doing exactly what those more traditional characters would do. Like Sydney says, she doesn’t watch “those” kinds of movies because people always run up the stairs when they should run for the door, but then when she is being chased by the killer she too runs up the stairs. The self-awareness of the movie makes it so interesting to watch.

With both of these things said, you might think that this movie would be cheesy. After reading the reviews of Scream before watching it, that is what I thought too. This is what the movie accomplishes perfectly, though. It is just the right amount of funny and suspenseful in the right way so as not to be cheesy. At the time it was made people were getting tired of predictable horror movies like Friday the 13th, where you knew everyone was going to die. This movie was like a breath of fresh air because of how unpredictable it was. Wes Craven was so ahead of his time to make a self-aware, funny, clever horror movie like Scream.