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Movie Review: Scream VI—Ghostface In New York

Scream | Graphic by Monica Brutto | The Wright State Guardian

Scream VI, released in theaters March 15, 2023, is the sixth film of the Scream franchise, dating from 1996 to the present. Directed by Tyler Gillett and Matt Bettinelli-Oplin and starring Jenna Ortega, this movie leads the killer “Ghostface” to New York City where the killings begin. 

Movie synopsis

Sam (Melissa Barrera) and Tara (Jenna Ortega) are two sisters returning from the previous film who have now settled in New York.

One year after the Woodsboro killings, with the Ghostface killer believed to be dead, the movie begins with a university professor lured into an alleyway on a busy New York night.

The movie does an enticing job setting the scene on a busy street in nighttime New York, leading the viewer to believe “How could a murder possibly happen here?”

The killer, who has catfished the professor, calls the professor, asking her to leave the bar and meet him on the street to find the bar in a charming manner. Then, while playfully flirting, the killer further leads the professor into a side alley, away from the safe, busy street.

When deep in the alley and still on the phone, the voice on the phone drops into a dark, psychopathic tone before the killer ambushes and stabs the professor. After the stabbing, the killer removes the mask to reveal the killer to be one of the professor’s students.

Upon returning to his apartment, the killer student is on the phone with “Jason,” talking about how “amazing” it felt to stab the professor to death; however, it is not long before he comes to realize it is not Jason he is speaking to.

After the voice on the phone instructs the killer to open the refrigerator, the killer student finds the remains of Jason inside it. Subsequently, the camera flicks to show the real Ghostface standing behind the professors’ murderer, violently stabbing him through the back.

After police discover the double homicide within the apartment, Detective Wayne Bailey calls Sam in for questioning after finding her ID at the scene, along with the Ghostface mask from the Woodsboro killings.

From here out, Sam and Tara understand the killer has returned to hunt them and begin to escape attacks from the killer while simultaneously attempting to bring the killer to the light. And with all Scream movies, the story always has a twist.

What will come next for Ghostface?

Scream VI certainly turns up the violence compared to previous movies, showing graphic stabbings, a lot of blood and the killer even using a shotgun at one point (which is very unusual for a Scream film). 

However, the cinematography did not disappoint, with many unique shots across New York, including a scene on the metro where the killer hides amongst many similar Ghostface halloween costumes, stalking Sam, Tara and friends. 

Furthermore, the story is left open for a seventh film, leaving anticipation. Will Ghostface return? Previous movies have ranged from quiet suburbs to major metropolises; could Ghostface return overseas? 

Despite the sequel rebooting itself in a “seen-it-all-before” genre, the franchise manages to stay entertaining with fresh, innovative horror sequences while sticking to the predictable order of events of the previous movies. 

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