A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

One, two, Freddy’s coming for you. / Three, four, better lock your door. / Five, six, grab your crucifix. / Seven, eight, better stay awake. / Nine, ten, never sleep again.

— Children

Since news of a remake to A Nightmare on Elm Street became known, I decided to revisit the Wes Craven original before watching the retread. This is not your typical slasher movie. It’s about a killer that kills you in your dreams. It’s more like mental warfare. That’s scary. This movie freaked me out when I was younger. Seeing it now, it stills creeps me out.

Tina, Nancy, Glen and Rod (Amanda Wyss, Heather Langenkamp, Johnny Depp, Nick Corri) are teenagers in the neighborhood are having terrible dreams about a “bogeyman” of sorts. They realized that they were having dreams about the same disfigured man in a red and green sweater with glove made of knives. His name is Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund).

During a sleepover at Tina’s house, the foursome is alone together in the house. As the night drags on, Tina and Rod have sex. Something mysterious happens in the house when pebbles are thrown at the window and nobody is there or a strange figure is coming out of the walls.

Tina hears the sound of her name whispered outside. She goes to investigate and is confronted by the monster her dreams, Freddy Krueger. Only she is not awake, she is having what looks like a night terror. She thrashes on the bed, blood coming from an open wound. She levitates and dragged along the wall to the ceiling where she dies.

Nancy’s father, Donald (John Saxon) is called to find Rod in connection with Tina’s murder. At the stationhouse, Nancy is at his office with her mother, Marge (Ronee Blakley) where she explains to her parents about Tina’s dreams about somebody trying to kill her.

The days after the incident, Rod is arrested and Nancy is haunted by the possibility that she might suffer the same fate if she falls asleep. Every time, she dozes off Freddy comes after her. She realizes that her imagination is coming true.

I heard that this was Johnny Depp’s movie debut as Nancy’s boyfriend, Glen. Huh. The movie has not aged well. It’s twenty-five years old. The special effects are a little wonky with the extending arms or the obvious stunt double when Freddy’s on fire. There is something about the way that Tina runs screams cliqued horror movie girl with the flailing arms and constantly looking back.

Judgment: I want everybody to watch this movie before watching the remake.

Rating: ****

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About Branden

Branden: I am just your average movie nut that reviews films. Gives his take on pop culture and Hollywood happenings. Dreams to have his own thriving website and make a living doing what he is passionate about.

Posted on December 11, 2009, in 1984, Horror, Psychological, Thriller and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Great article! I actually saw Part 2 and 4 before the original, and while I love them both, they don’t compare to Part 1 in terms of scariness. I remember actually being surprised as a kid when I finally saw it by how unsettling it was compared to its sequels, which turned Freddy into an anti-hero. I consider it Wes Craven’s best film by far. I won’t touch the remake.

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