Horror Series: A Nightmare on Elm Street

 

My first love is most defiantly the Nightmare on Elm Street Series of films.    Some are great and some are terrible.  My favorites from the series are the first and the third films.

A Nightmare on Elm Street tells the story basically tells the story of the last teens on Elm street of the parents of children that killed child killer Freddy Krueger.  Freddy was originally supposed to be a child molester and killer but Wes Craven didn’t think audiences in the 80’s would embrace that. It is only in the 2010 remake that it is emphatically said that he is a child molester. The story is of several teen who are being killed in their sleep.  Nancy is the main protagonist and she her friends as they are all killed by Freddy one by one.  She figures out that she can take back her power and rid herself of Freddy in the final confrontation.  Or so she thinks.  That last scene of the movie opens the door for further sequels and a sinister ending.

A Nightmare on Elm Street part two tells the story of another set of teens from Elm Street. Freddy possesses teen Jessie Walsh and Freddy uses him to do his work.    I am not a fan of this film. It’s kind of like the Temple of Doom of the Nightmare series.  To me that film could be left out of the franchise.  I do however have a connection to this film in the series as the brother of my science teacher from middle school, David Chaskin, wrote the screen play.

A Nightmare on Elm Street part  three: Dream warriors is probably my favorite movie in the series next to the original.  In this film the remaining Elm Street Children are all placed in Weston Hills Mental Institution and Nancy returns as a  intern therapist to help these teens.  She knows their plight well. Nancy helps the children find their “Dream Powers.” However, one by one, the inmates at the institution meet their deaths with the exception of Kincaid, Joey and Kristin. (who return for the next film). We meet Freddy’s mother, Amanda Krueger who suggests that Freddy needs to be returned to hallowed ground in order to destroy him.  The director of the institution Dr Weston accomplishes this but Nancy is killed in the process.

I love this movie because the deaths are some of the best ever and there is always something creepy about mental institutions.  The best is the girl Jennifer who wants to be an actress and watches TV all the time and meets her demise when Freddy puts her head through the TV.  Awesome.   I also like that Nancy has returned.

In A Nightmare on Elm Street Four: The Dream Master, Kristen inadvertently brings Freddy back and meets her demise when her mother gives her sedatives to make her sleep.  Before she dies she brings Kincaid and Joey into her dreams.  Just prior to her death she transfers her dream power to her friend Alice who becomes the main protagonist of the film.  Alice provides victims for Freddy by dragging her friends into her dreams. Alice begins to aquire the traits of her fallen friends and has a showdown with Freddy at the end of the film.  Alice uses the power of said Dream Master to release all the souls of her friends, ripping themselves from Freddy’s body killing him in the process. Alice becomes pregnant in this film. Is it her boyfriend Dan’s or Freddy’s?

Part 4 isn’t bad it’s just not one of my favorites. It goes really well with Dream Warriors as this film is really a continuation of that film.

In A Nightmare on Elm Street Five: Dream child Freddy uses Alice’s unborn child to resurrect himself and kill a new batch of victims.  We see a little more of Freddy’s back story with his mom a working in an asylum and how he came into being being “the bastard son of 1000 maniacs,” when his mother is raped repeatedly.  Alice and Jacob her baby ultimately escape from the Dream world.

In Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare, Freddy returns.   This movie is about one “john Doe” who seeks out Freddy’s Daughter (??), Maggie  and wants her to leave Springfield.  Maggie discovers Freddy’s past and how he was abused by his peers, beaten by his father, killed his wife, practicing cruelty to animals and the very moment when the “Dream Demons” arrive in the burning boiler room to offer him eternal life.

The series kind of comes full circle.  An interesting bit of back story but I feel like the series kind of “jumps the shark.” Perhaps the series has gone on too long by this point. I don’t’ know. It’s defiantly not the best film in the series but certainly not the worst.

The final installment in the original series, Wes Craven’s New Nightmare,  is more of a “reality” surrounding the cast and crew of the Nightmare franchise.  The players play themselves.  Freddy exisiting only in the films and when the films stop Freddy jumps out of the films to escape into the real world.  The only person who can stop him is Nancy and does so by trapping him in a furnace killing him.

Freddy VS Jason is the film that both fans of the Nightmare and Friday the 13th Franchises waited for many years.  I know I had been being a fan of the Friday Franchise as well.  In Friday the 13th: Jason goes to Hell: The Final Friday  (which was not the final Friday) the upcoming promise of this film is foreshadowed when Freddy’s claw comes out of the ground taking Jason’s mask presumably to hell.  This film did not happen for many years after this due to development issues between Paramount and New Line.

Freddy vs. Jason brings together two of the most recognizable horror icons to face each other explains that Freddy Krueger has grown weak as people in Springwood, his home, have suppressed their fear of him. Freddy, who is impersonating Pamela Voorhees, the mother of Jason Voorhees, sends Jason to Springwood to cause panic and fear. Jason accomplishes this, but refuses to stop killing. A battle ensues in both the dream world and Crystal Lake between the two villains. The winner is left ambiguous, as Jason surfaces from the lake holding Freddy’s severed head, which winks and laughs.  This was a fun ride.

The Nightmare on Elm Street Remake (2010)  “Here, Freddy stalks the dreams of Nancy Holbrook  and her friends as they discover that they all share a common link from their childhood; they were all physically and sexually abused by Freddy before he was murdered by their vengeful parents. Now a supernatural force in their dreams, Freddy kills off the children that alerted the parents about his transgressions. Freddy slowly works his way to Nancy, his favorite of the children, and manipulates her into going without sleep long enough that her body falls into a coma, resulting in permanent sleep and life with Freddy forever. Nancy is awakened when her friend Quentin injects  into her and pulls Freddy out of the dream world, where she and Quentin kill him and burn the remains of his body.”(From Wikipedia)

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