Review: A Nightmare on Elm Street

Thanks for checking out our spoiler free A Nightmare on Elm Street review

Genre: Horror
Directed by: Samuel Bayer
Staring: Jackie Earle Haley, Kyle Gallner, Rooney Mara, Katie Cassidy, Thomas Dekker, Kellan Lutz, Clancy Brown
Released: April 30th, 2010

THE GENERAL IDEA

A remake of the 80s horror classic, this movie follows the lives of a group of highschool students who are tormented in their dreams by the same nightmare. The nightmare is a supernatural serial killer who wears a glove with bladed fingers, out for revenge on the children of the parents who brutally caused his death.

THE GOOD

The character acting in the movie is actually pretty good. There were no outstanding “that person is horrible” kind of thing. And they all perform scared and tormented really well.

The movie is all about Freddy, so lets go there. He looks GOOD. Its not the same, and the personality is different, but its good. The burns look like burns. Up close you even see gaps in his skin showing charred and severed tendons underneath. He is horrific looking which works. And the voice is good, and he still has the “one liner” snark while he is tormenting and killing his victims. I thought Freddy himself was done EXTREMEMELY well.

The effects for the most part were very well done. Invisible hands throwing people around the room looks effective and not like they were on wires. Most of the time I believed people were getting hurt.

The biggest concern over the remake is that they would demystify Freddy’s past by showing too much of what really happened. I will not spoil how its revealed but it is effective and does not take away from Freddy’s history at all. I wont say what’s changed, but it all works.

There are a lot of nods to the original with scenes like the claw in the bathtub, and it generally follows the same plot and story with some minor changes that don’t ruin everything.

THE BAD

Some of the effects were so poorly thought out that it detracts from the effect. In one scene a boy “stabs himself in the neck” with a knife (Freddy in the dream) and then proceeds to pull the knife across his neck. Physically it cant work the way he does it and it ruined the effectiveness of this shocking scene. That and when someone gets blood splattered on his shirt… the blood shouldnt move around. Honestly, is it that hard to splatter blood on ONE shirt and just wear it?

There are some logic holes in the film. The scene in which Freddy’s death happens is in a dream. Freddy controls the dreams, so it made no sense that he would choose to reveal this to that victim at that time.

OVERALL

This is a fitting film in the Nightmare series, however its not IN the Nightmare series. The measuring stick by which this film will be graded is more often than not be set against the original. And I think this was better. Its not perfect, but neither was the original.

I give Nightmare on Elm Street a 6 out of 10

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