Scream 2 hit theaters one year exactly after the original, both films raking in tons of cash in late December despite its not being the typical time to release a horror film. Ever since, Dimension has tried to find that same sort of success, often releasing films directly on Christmas Day: Wolf Creek, Black Xmas, Darkness... all of these genre efforts were aimed at that peculiar group of people (i.e. me) who HAVE TO go to the movies on Christmas night.
Few have found any sort of success whatsoever, but one exception is Robert Rodriguez's The Faculty, which didn't exactly do Scream business but ended up with more than all of those other movies combined. Aided by a script from Scream guru Kevin Williamson, an impossibly appealing cast of upcomers mixed with veteran character actors (and, uh, Harry Knowles), and a hit soundtrack featuring what may be the absolute worst cover of all time (Class of 99's atrocious "Another Brick In The Wall Part 2"), the film did fine up against the likes of Patch Adams and Stepmom, and holding better than most horror films on the way to a $40 million gross - at the time, Rodriguez's biggest hit (and remains his third most successful non-Spy Kids film, after Sin City and Once Upon A Time In Mexico).
So clearly it has its fans, and hopefully some of them are in Los Angeles and able to stay up late, because I am hosting a revival screening (its first?) at the New Beverly Cinema this Saturday, September 15th at 11:59 pm. Presented in glorious 35mm (back when Rodriguez still shot on film), the screening will be preceded by my usual intro with original screenwriters David Wechter and Bruce Kimmel joining us for the pre-movie Q&A! Plus we'll have some DVD/swag giveaways for those who have the ability to answer simple questions. As always, tickets are a mere 8 dollars cash at the door (advance tickets are available here), which should leave you some change for the cheapest concessions in town (it's possible to get a drink, a popcorn, and candy for 5 bucks!). The New Beverly is located at 7165 Beverly Blvd in Los Angeles (90036), two blocks west of La Brea. Street parking is easy to find, just watch the signs as some are permit only (Formosa is not, however, and is usually the best bet).
I recently watched the film (it just came out on Blu-ray) for the first time in probably seven or eight years, and was happy to discover it holds up fine; a few of the references date it, but the game cast and breakneck pace easily make up for it. The "who's human" test scene is one of the best all time homages to The Thing, and while some of the CGI shows its limits, there are a ton of great practical FX to enjoy as well. And its underplayed, but I love the idea that the aliens remove the idea of peer pressure from their infected victims - everyone's actually sort of better off when they're changed, as they no longer feel the need to live up to their expectations (i.e. the head cheerleader starts wearing her glasses). It's also a fine selection for those heading to Fantastic Fest a few days later; in addition to Knowles (who was one of FF's original founders), the film stars FF regular attendee Elijah Wood, and was mostly shot in Austin - the School For The Deaf on Congress was used as its high school, for example. And Rodriguez was part of the first Fantastic Fest, showing a preview of the not-yet-released extended version of Sin City. So it's perfect! Right? Hope to see you there!