If you weren’t a moviegoer in 1996, you might not understand the excitement that surrounded Scream. When word got out that the director of Nightmare on Elm Street was releasing a new film, people were psyched. The movie did well, with the producers introducing a strong heroine and slashing previous slasher film tropes. It did so well, in fact, that we are now on our fifth installment, which hit theaters this month.
But Matthew Lillard, an original villain, doesn’t get the hype. Vulture spoke to the actor, and he’s a pretty tough critic of the movie.
“It is not a perfect film!” he said. “I think the opening sequence is incredible. It sets the tone for everything else, and the middle of the movie sort of gets bogged down. Then the end sequence, the last 20 minutes, is incredible. You earn so much street cred in those first 20 minutes that the rest of the movie, it sort of tanks! And then it comes screaming up to finish strong.”
Lillard had a lot more to say, “I think what it is in that last sequence is the ability to laugh at the same time that you’re horrified. To be like, “Oh my God, that’s crazy! They’re stabbing each other!” The brutality, the killing of Tatum — and then you’re laughing in the middle of it all. I think it’s an intersection you don’t see very often, and it’s really hard to hit. It’s hard to scare the crap out of people and make them laugh at the same time.”
If you haven’t seen the Scream movies, it is worth it to watch them in order, despite what Lillard has to say about it. You might think of him as Shaggy from Scooby-Doo, but we must never forget the original sensation that is Stu Macher.