Sylent Mari Says: Too many technical issues caused this entry to be a day late. So, you’re gonna be getting two posts today! Day 6 will be up later today.

1980's New Line Cinema title

Kicking off this late entry into the fifth day of GV’s 30 Days of Halloween is a retrospective piece on my favorite horror franchise: A Nightmare on Elm Street. One of the most influential films of the modern horror world, ANOES and its subsequent sequels have inspired filmmakers and writers for years, and has also gained quite an impressive fan-following since the first film premiered in 1984. We also can’t forget the major influence that Freddy Krueger has had upon the horror lexicon as one of its most iconic movie monsters of all-time. So popular that he’s even got one of the cutest toys ever: a Funko Pop! Vinyl figure, which became my first purchase from the toy line after my mom spotted him at a local comic convention (thanks, Mom!)

FREDDY_POP_GLAM_1024x1024
Who’s the cutest lil’ child molestin’ dream killer? You are!

Before I continue with the proceedings, let’s take a moment of silence and reflect on the amazing career of Wes Craven. It’s still a little hard for me as a huge fan of the man himself and his work to talk about the massive influence & inspiration that he has given me throughout my life. A Nightmare on Elm Street was the first film that really affected me as a kid (thanks, Dad!) and made me fall in love with the horror genre. Many adults my age and fans younger and older than me have also been influenced by him through his diverse filmography (my generation: ANOES; younger adults: the SCREAM series). A tribute post to Wes Craven will be posted before Halloween.

While the ANOES franchise can be seen as a little bit cheesy nowadays, there are a few films in the series that still hold up quite after all these years. The same can’t be said for the lifeless remake, and I’ve purposely left it off this retrospective ’cause it’s not part of the original franchise and it’s just terrible; not even a bad-fun watch, I’m sure some of you awesome readers out there have many, many opinions about it – please share those opinions below in the Comments section if you so chose, ‘cause I’m curious to see if ANY fans of the original film liked the remake.

If you’ve read my Hellraiser series retrospective post (shameless plug!) from a few years ago, I used a format that featured the following: Two-Minute Synopsis, Two-Minute Review, and Favorite Scenes, along with a rating system featuring miniature Lament Configurations. For this A Nightmare on Elm Street retro rewind, it’s screenshot time! No short synopsis – just selected screenshots from each movie for your viewing pleasure. And super-quick reviews of each film. I recommend seeing all of the movies. Sure, some of the films are cringeworthy and you might find yourself overdosing on the eye-rolling, but you’ll have the earned “achievement” of watching all the films. You can skip the remake – it’s not required viewing, Nor should it ever be viewed. I have included Freddy vs. Jason before because it technically counts as being part of the franchise as a sorta-sequel.

One film that I left off this list is actually an excellent documentary about the series: Never Sleep Again – The Elm Street Legacy. Narrated by series star Heather Langenkamp (Nancy Thompson), the documentary features some very insightful and interesting commentary from the cast & crew that made the films. It’s one of the most well-made documentaries that I’ve ever seen. If you’re a big ANOES franchise fan, please find a copy of this documentary IMMEDIATELY. I caught it on Netflix and last I checked it was still on there. I may have also watched numerous times because it’s so entertaining and full of information that I didn’t know.

MOVIE SPOILERS WARNING: There are spoilery screenshots full-steam ahead, but I try not to ruin all of the fun. If you’re a fan of the films I’m not spoiling anything for you, but if you’re a bit curious as to what the movies are all about…at least you can look at the screenshots. Also, some of these could be considered NSFW, though nothing graphic. Looking at pictures of corpses in public is probably frowned upon.

TOTALLY AWESOME QUEER CONTENT ALERT! As a queer-friendly blog, I have to point out all of the cool gay or queer content you might’ve missed when seeing a movie for the first time. In the case of A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge, it is the queerest horror movie ever (unintentionally) made. Like super-gay in all the right ways. That was unheard of in the 1980’s! Also – have you ever seen a male scream queen? You will in this movie. This is the perfect Midnight Movie too – invite friends over to watch it.


 A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (1984)
Director: Wes Craven, Writer: Wes Craven

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 1/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 2/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 3/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 4/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 5/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 6/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 7/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 8/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street - 9/9

Quick Review: My favorite horror film, and the one I remember the most vividly growing up (along with JAWS). While the film is a bit dated, the physical effects still hold up quite well, and they look a lot better than the awful CGI of the remake. Good performances from the cast & a strong story make this a must-see for any horror fan.

Number of Freddy’s Gloves: freddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-small
(1 out of 5, with 1 being crap and 5 being badass)


A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 2: FREDDY’S REVENGE (1985)
Director: Jack Sholder, Writer: David Chaskin

 A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 1/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 2/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 3/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 4/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 5/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 6/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 7/9

A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 8/9

ANOES2015-10-06-23h13m30s247

Quick Review: How many of us were clueless to all of the gay/queer subtext when this movie came out? Probably most of us. It’s an OK film to watch and it takes some liberties with the story that we learned in the first film (like Freddy entering our dream world, etc.). For a cheesy Saturday night flick it’s not too bad. As a future Midnight Movie viewing with friends, this movie is so worth it. You can yell lines at the screen, throw fake birds around, and just revel in all the awesomeness queerness of this film.

Number of Freddy’s Glovesfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-small1/2 (the movie itself);
freddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-small (for being the queerest horror movie ever)


A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 3: DREAM WARRIORS (1987)
Director: Chuck Russell, Writer: Wes Craven, Frank Darabont, Chuck Russell, Bruce Wagner

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 1/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 2/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 3/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 4/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 5/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 6/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 7/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 8/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 9/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - 10/10

Quick Review: I’m always changing my opinion on which of the ANOES films is my favorite, but I always find myself going back to Dream Warriors, with the original and New Nightmare tied as my second favorites. There’s so many great visuals in this film, a few recognizable future stars, and it features the return of Nancy (yay!). There’s also the most quoted line in the series courtesy of this film, and it was improvised by Robert Englund, and totally appropriate: “Welcome to primetime, bitch!

Number of Freddy’s Gloves: freddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-small


A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 4: THE DREAM MASTER (1988)
Director:
Renny Harlin, Writer: Brian Helgeland, Jim Wheat, Ken Wheat

 A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master - 1/8

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master - 2/8

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master - 3/8

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master - 4/8

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master - 5/8

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master - 6/8

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master - 7/8

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master - 8/8

Quick Review: I’ve seen this movie several times and I keep confusing scenes from it with scenes from ANOES 5. This third sequel isn’t as good as Dream Warrior, but it’s definitely not as bad as the fifth & sixth films. This is full of campy goodness and some cool deaths, but it’s a little unforgettable too. We meet Alice in this film too (see above), who can pull others into her dreams (aka the Dream Master).

Number of Freddy’s Gloves: freddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-small


A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 5: THE DREAM CHILD (1989)
Director: Stephen Hopkins, Writer: Leslie Bohem

 A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 1/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 2/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 3/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 4/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 5/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 6/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 7/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 8/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 9/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child - 10/10

Quick Review: I vaguely remember seeing this at a drive-in theater in Albuquerque with my family years ago when this film opened up in theaters. Actually, I was watching it while my family were watching the film they had paid to see: Cheetah (a Disney flick, I think). I remember glimpsing back and being so utterly confused by this film and years later I still forget what it’s about. One of the weakest sequels of the series.

Number of Freddy’s Gloves: freddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-small


 A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 6: THE FINAL NIGHTMARE (1991)
Director: Rachel Talalay, Writer: Michael De Luca

 A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 1/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 2/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 3/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 4/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 5/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 6/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 7/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 8/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 9/10

A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: The Final Nightmare - 10/10

Quick Review: Umm…I don’t…so… At least the 3-D portion towards the end of the film was kinda cool? And Freddy’s custom Nintendo Power Glove too? I’ve got nothing. I’ve seen this movie quite a few times and really don’t remember much, aside from the fact that the lead heroine is Freddy’s daughter and she’s a counselor. Or a psychologist. She’s a pretty cool character. You might have to be a little drunk to get into this film.

Number of Freddy’s Gloves: freddy-glove-small1/2


WES CRAVEN’S NEW NIGHTMARE
Director: Wes Craven, Writer: Wes Craven

 Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 1/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 2/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 3/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 4/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 5/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 6/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 7/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 8/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 9/10

Wes Craven's New Nightmare - 10/10

Quick Review: Before SCREAM came along, New Nightmare was filled with all sorts of meta-goodness that saw a movie-within-a-movie with the making of this film. New Nightmare is Wes Craven’s deconstruction of the horror genre, along with the Nightmare franchise, featuring the stars of the first film in a nightmarish scenario: what if Freddy Krueger was actually a real figure and not a creation from Wes’ imagination? Featuring appearances from Heather Langenkamp, Robert Englund, John Saxon, Robert Shaye (then-head of New Line Cinema), and Wes Craven himself, New Nightmare is a cerebral horror movie that is definitely worth watching and one of my all-time favorite films.

Number of Freddy’s Gloves: freddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-small


FREDDY VS. JASON
Director: Ronny Yu, Writer:  Damian Shannon and Mark Swift, et. all

 Freddy vs. Jason - 1/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 2/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 3/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 4/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 5/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 6/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 7/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 8/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 9/10

Freddy vs. Jason - 10/10

Quick Review: The movie that fans of the Nightmare and Friday the 13th franchises had been waiting years and years for, and it mostly delivers…if you can shut off your brain for a little while. I loved this film when it first came out, but subsequent viewings throughout the years has left me wondering why I dug it so much. Maybe it was for the nudity and the violence, but i also thank it for introducing me to one of my favorite Canadian actresses: Katharine Isabelle. Heck, I watch so many Canadian TV shows that I recognize several of the actors in the film (hi Lochlyn Monroe!). The film delivers on the death scenes and not much else, but it’s a fun watch. Jason does score some unique kills and is a welcome presence in the film. So who wins the monster battle royale? It’s a draw if you’re looking at that last screenshot above.

Number of Freddy’s Gloves: freddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-smallfreddy-glove-small