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  1. #1
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    Nightmare On Elm Street 1-5 my thoughts

    OK so I've never actually seen a true Nightmare On Elm street film in its entirety (Freddy Vs Jason doesn't count) but we just got the UK box set come into work and we transferred them straight to rental, so I watched the 5 films on this set and I have to say that I was, kind of disappointed actually.

    A Nightmare On Elm Street is the one film in the series that is called a classic, and it is generally considered one of the scariest films ever. I disagree, it works on a killer concept, that we are being stalked and murdered in our dreams, a place we all have to visit at some place and a place where ANYTHING can happen. It was in itself a decent slasher movie with some fantastic direction from Craven. The subtle blur between reality and dreams was terrifying, because you were never sure if the character was awake or asleep until all hell started to break loose. The visuals that Craven utilized in these sequences only served to intensify this, Freddy popping out from behind a tree that's less than one third his size was a particularly creepy highlight for me. Then this was all really tied together by a select few kills that were both unique and fairly disturbing. Amanda Wyss blonde girl being dragged across the ceiling and having her guts slashed open by an invisible force, and Johnny Depp getting swallowed by his bed and having his entrails sprayed across the roof. You know the score.

    Unfortunately despite being fairly solid in these areas I never once felt the film itself was ever disturbing because of the fact that in all other areas the film was just another teen slasher movie. Robert Englund did very good as Freddy, even in this first film and before the character became a comedian you could tell that Englund had made the character his own, but other than him the acting was absolutely horrible. I hear so much about how great Heather Langenkamp was as Nancy, but to me she was horrible. Nothing at all in her performance made her feel like a regular high school girl, she never really came across as scared, and the difference between her portrayal of Nancy being worried about her boyfriend and her running in terror from Freddy were exactly the same as her portrayal of every other emotion in the film. Amanda Wyss and Jsu Garcia were completely boring in their none existent characters, and even Johnny Depp (the king of cool) gave the one bad performance I've seen him give. Which possibly had a lot to do with the writing, because let's face it. As much as Craven knows about visuals he knows squat about writing, which is proven by the completely laughable dialogue and characters who never once acted believably. Let's see now, we have the cops at a house where a boy has been brutally murdered, the killer is still on the loose, probably in the locality, and over the road a girl starts screaming bloody murder, smashing windows and shouting that he's here and don't let him kill me. So AFTER ABOUT 10 MINUTES of this the cop states "Maybe I better go get her father", gee ya think????? I'm sorry I know that horror is not supposed to be about realism, but I can't really define a movie so laughable as the most disturbing film ever made, especially since the dream world all but disappeared for the second half of the film which left it with nothing even remotely scary to hold on to. I'd say about 3.5/5 creepy, but in no way is this film a horror masterpiece.
    Last edited by carl; 05-01-2005 at 01:07 PM.

  2. #2
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    As much as I could complain about the first film though I would have to say that at least it wasn't Freddy's Revenge, quite possibly the worst sequel in history. First of all revenge against who? I was under the impression that Freddy was out for revenge in the first film, and was just plain murderizing people for no reason in this one. Anyway all that aside and I have to say that the film transcends dumbness, Freddy wants to possess a boys body so that he can kill kids who are awake, a good idea,. He completely exits the dream world and becomes another mundane movie villain is not such a good idea, and the scene where he comes ripping out of said characters stomach is just about the worst mistake in the history of bad mistakes. What about the visuals though, any creepy dream scenes, or fancy killings? Nope, here we have a gay Nazi coach being S&M whipped with skipping ropes, dogs with human faces, and the absolute horror of horrors in an insane budgie. Clearly time for a change of underpants then, because you know you really should be changing them every day.

    The writing takes the poor script in the original and asks a trained chimpanzee to try and improve on it, which most fans generally admit was a bad mistake. Freddy is no longer creepy, his dream world makes just one noticeable appearance, his real world powers make no sense, and his choice of killing methods lack even a hint of imagination. What's more the choice of actors is beyond lame, with lead actor Mark Patton being one of the most irritating dopey little twats I've ever seen. Jack Sholder's direction lacks so much as a hint of style, and the film just generally lacks anything to really make me want to discuss it in depth. The only things positive in the film are that once again Englund is superb as Freddy and that Meryl Streep lookalike Kim Myers was a total babe, which is odd considering I find Streep to be ugly as hell. Overall this one is definitely a 0/5 contender. I'm certainly not a major fan of the original, but you know what, I still hate this film as one of the worst ever made.

  3. #3
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    erm, it's wes craven

  4. #4
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    A Nightmare on Elm Street is a Horror classic, Couldn't give a **** what anyone says, I liked it more then TCM and Psycho, A Nightmare on Elm Street 2 was the 1st one i saw so i've always liked it, Freddy looked much darker and the plot wasn't too bad, Nah i really enjoyed it.

  5. #5
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    Since watching these films I've been reading up on them and discovered that the third film, The Dream Warriors is the most popular sequel. Personally I can understand why as out of the 5 films on this set this one, after the first, is the most fun. Despite the other Elm Street kids never being mentioned before the idea of Freddy causing them problems in a mental institution is a great concept, and thanks to the return of Craven as script writer it's an idea that's made use of in the script, with the prospect of the kids being drugged to sleep being a very real threat in this chapter. In terms of Direction the film is different to the first, with the creepy blur between reality and fantasy being removed, and in it's place a series of imaginative dream scenes that, while never scary, manage to be a whole lot of fun and move along with a near unrivaled energy. I mean, death by TV, it just kills it. I was also surprised at the fact that the acting in this chapter was superior, in every respect, to the original. I'd still claim that Langenkamp is terrible as Nancy; seriously did anyone buy her as a psychiatric consultant? However this time we have the returning Englund who embraces a Freddy that is more comedian than paedophile, Patricia Arquette giving a believable performance of vulnerability and desperation in the lead role, Jennifer Rubin having a lot of fun in the role of an ex junky who dreams of being a punk.The best though would have to be Rodney Eastman as the mute character Joey; since even without any dialogue the moment the buxom young nurse removed her uniform and asked if he liked her body, the grin on his face told you every thing you needed to know.

    Sadly once again the film fails to make complete use of it's killer concept. Personally I thought that the idea itself was scary as hell, but that fear is somewhat diminished by the all new style. Freddy's wise cracks are by and large lame, reducing his sense of evil and making him feel more like a frustrated stand up comedian. Also the fact that the kids are now turning into kung fu fighting, super human, switch blade wielding punks who take Freddy on in the dream world does somewhat diminish the scare factor even more, and the less said about the young geek screaming "I am the Wizard Master" the better, because it really has scarred me for life.

    Still in terms of the fun factor the film had it in spades thanks to improved effects, some fearsomely imaginative dream/murder sequences and even a satisfying way to get rid of Freddy without any loose ends. I'd say another 3.5/5

  6. #6
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    I Love them all the Nightmare On Elm Street's i love the scores/SoundTracks i got 1TO5 Movie Score's + here and there SoundTrack Music

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