Scream 4 appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a good but not great image.
Sharpness was usually fairly good. Wider shots tended to be a bit soft, but those instances weren’t major, and the movie usually demonstrated pretty decent clarity and accuracy.
No issues with jagged edges or shimmering occurred, and I saw no edge enhancement. Source flaws weren’t a factor.
Colors went with a heavily golden/amber tone. While the tones didn’t boast great clarity, they seemed reasonably positive.
Blacks tended to appear somewhat crushed, while shadows were a little murky. This felt like a “B-“ presentation to me.
I thought that the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Scream 4 seemed fine. Given that we didn’t find a lot of action here, the mix tended to keep things spooky and atmospheric.
It threw out the occasional jolt but mostly stayed with environmental material. The louder scenes offered nice involvement, while the quieter ones placed us in the action in an effective manner.
Audio quality appeared good. Speech was natural and distinct, with no issues related to edginess or intelligibility.
Effects sounded clean and accurate, with good fidelity and no signs of distortion. Music was perfectly fine, as the score showed positive dimensionality. This track was good enough for a “B“ and matched the movie’s mood.
How did the Blu-ray compare to the DVD version? Audio showed better range and power, while visuals appeared more concise and vivid. Though not a great presentation, the Blu-ray still topped the mediocre DVD.
The Blu-ray includes the same extras as the DVD, and we open with an audio commentary from director Wes Craven and actors Emma Roberts, Hayden Panettiere, and Neve Campbell. Craven, Roberts and Panattiere sit together for a running, screen-specific chat, amd Campbell shows up for a “special guest appearance”.
Via the phone, Campbell pops up fairly early in the film and remains until roughly its mid-point. Panattiere leaves not much later, so a substantial portion of the conversation features only Craven and Roberts.
The commentary covers some story and character topics, deleted/changed scenes, cast and performances, sets and locations, cinematography and various effects. Don’t expect a wealth of good information here, though, as the chat tends to feel fairly insubstantial.
The actors often talk about how much they like this or that, and we just don’t learn a whole lot. The piece moves along well enough to keep us with it, but it’s never better than mediocre.
20 Deleted Scenes run a total of 26 minutes, two seconds. The majority of these offer fairly quick expository bits, so they flesh out some character and story elements in a minor way. None of them prove to be especially interesting.
An “Alternate Opening” changes the manner in which the Woodsboro girls die at the film’s start. It doesn’t affect the plot – they’re just as dead in the final cut – but it does deliver something a little different.
As for the “Extended Ending”, it takes the theatrical version’s finale and adds some character moments as a coda. It’s not effective.
We can view the deleted scenes with or without commentary from Craven. He gives us some notes about the sequences and occasionally – but not always – tells us why he cut them.
Craven wasn’t an especially engaging presence during the main commentary, and he’s still pretty low-key here. He throws out a few decent details but doesn’t add a lot.
A Gag Reel goes for nine minutes, 18 seconds. Much of the reel shows the standard goofs and giggles, though we get more practical joke-style scares as well, where usually someone will jump from behind a door or the like. A few funny moments emerge – mostly via improv from Anthony Anderson – but don’t expect a lot of hilarity.
Finally, we get the 10-minute, 29-second The Making of Scream 4. It features notes from Craven, Campbell, Roberts, Panattiere, and actors Anthony Anderson, Adam Brody, Courteney Cox, Alison Brie, and David Arquette.
The show offers quick thoughts about story and characters, cast and performances, Craven’s work and the continuation of the series. This is a basic promotional piece, so there’s not much of interest on display.
A few ads open the disc. We get clips for The Zombie Diaries 2: World of the Dead, Children of the Corn: Genesis, the Scream trilogy, and Scream 4: The Mobile Video Game. No trailer for Scream 4 appears.
For reasons probably due more to flagging careers than to creative inspiration, a successful horror franchise comes back to life with Scream 4. The film won’t inspire a new run of flicks, though, as it didn’t do much at the box office, and the movie lacks the zing and power to inspire “cult classic” affection. The Blu-ray delivers decent picture, good audio and a reasonable collection of bonus materials. Scream 4 fails to reinvigorate the series.
To rate this film, visit the DVD review of SCREAM 4