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A Nightmare on Elm Street
Nightmare - Mörderische Träume

USA 1984
produced by
Robert Shaye, Stanley Dudelson (executive), Joseph Wolf (executive) for New Line, Smart Egg Pictures, Media Home Entertainment
directed by Wes Craven
starring Heather Langenkamp, Johnny Depp, Amanda Wyss, Nick Corri (= Jsu Garcia), Robert Englund, John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Charles Fleischer, Joseph Whipp, Lin Shaye, Joe Unger, Mimi Craven, Jack Shea, Ed Call, Sandy Lipton
written by Wes Craven, music by Charles Bernstein, special make-up effects by David B.Miller

A Nightmare on Elm Street/Freddy Krueger

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Teenaged Tina (Amanda Wyss) is plagued by terrible nightmares, so when one night her mother is out, she asks her friends Nancy (Heather Langenkamp) and Glen (young Johnny Depp) and her boyfriend Rod (Nick Corri) to sleep over and protect her - and interestingly enough, they all had similar nightmares.

However, protecting her her friends can't, she is killed by something from her dreams when Rod is still in bed with her. In shock, Rod makes a getaway ... and for the police he is soon enough the one and only logical suspect ... and it's not long before he is caught and arrested.

Meanwhile the nightmares Nancy has become more intense, and she is soon convinced that it was not Rod who killed Tina but someone in their mutual nightmares ... someone called Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund). But not only that, Krueger is also after Rod, and before long has hanged him in his prison cell.  Nancy's cop father (John Saxon) and alcoholic mother (Ronee Blakley) are reluctant to believe her though, even when she manages to bring Krueger's hat back from her dream. It's only now that her mother confesses that Krueger was a child killer years ago, but she and dad were part of aa lynchmob that burned him to death ... with rather unexpected consequences, considering he now roams the teenagers' dreamworld.

At first, Nancy tries to stay awake as long as possible, but soon enough she finds out that eventually she has to sleep again, so with Glen's help she wants to pull Krueger from her dreams back into the real world, but Glen proves rather useless and on top of this soon gets kileld by Freddy himself ... so Nancy has to rely on an alarmclock and boobytraps to defeat and kill Freddy. Somehow it works, Nancy manages to pull Freddy to the real world, badly injure him and in the end burn him - to death, she thinks and goes get help. But Freddy has already been burned once, and strikes back in killing Nancy's mum, then he corners Nancy and goes after her ... which is when Nancy remembers something from a dreambook: If she can convince herself her dream is not true, it will go away ... and suddenly Freddy disappears.

The next morning, everything's back to normal, Nancy's friends are back and so is her mum - and everything couldn't be nicer, until ...

 

A Nightmare on Elm Street is almost a contradiction in itself: An intelligent horror-film based on stupid ideas and plottwists, a slasher movie that manages to be original and inventive, teen horror that entertains without insulting the audience. The film actually works for a variety of reasons, but first and foremost perhaps because the film shows no hesitation in relying on the logic (or un-logic) of a nightmare where anything can happen (and frequently does) and at least flashes of surrealism are almost mandatory. Then there's of course the central character of Nancy/Heather Langenkamp, the final girl, who is more fleshed out than usually for this sort of film, who really has her own story that's more than just a genre cliché, and then there's of course Freddy/Robert Englund, who despite little screentime and almost no oneliners in this one, makes a great villain.

In its time, the film was immensely popular and has since become a classic of the genre. It also had 7 sequels - all of which focussed more on Freddy, who soon became more and more of a comicbook character - and a shortlived TV-series (Freddy's Nightmares), but neither could match the quality of this movie.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD