Nightmare on Elm Street Remake

Posted: May 22, 2010 in Movies
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Jackie Earl Haley plays deceased killer Freddy Krueger in the remake of the 1984 film. Freddy appears in people’s nightmares and if he kills someone in their sleep, they die for real.

In this movie Freddy has a specific reason to target a certain group of teenagers. The central teen character changes a few times as the body count rises and more of the story is uncovered.

Freddy is given more of a backstory, we learn more about his life when he was human and why he’s targeting specific kids. It actually borrows a page from Jason vs Freddy in having a conspiracy to erase Freddy’s memory. It also borrows the line “Why won’t you die?” I think it changes to “…stay dead.” There’s also a tease of a major plot twist, but it turns out to be a red herring.

We get some exposition about the nature of sleep and lack thereof, which added to the plot and to the horror, but was just a tad over developed. It maintains a decent level of tension throughout, and does a good job of mixing the dream world and real world so you don’t know which is which. Though I thought the opening scene was more obvious. There’s a scene at the hospital that was almost unnecessary and felt rushed.

The acting is decent, not always great. One thing I liked is the teen cast looked more like normal kids. Sometimes movies have every teenager looking like a fashion model.  Haley of course is great as Freddy. (Though he could have had a slower reveal) He’s just plain creepy, and not making stupid jokes. The special effects are kept to a minimum, focusing on how Freddy kills. There’s no Freddy stretching his arms like Plastic Man or turning into a giant worm or a motorcycle or anything stupid like that.

In closing, a lot of hardcore horror fans hate the remakes of today. I’m biased because I didn’t see the Nightmare series till I was older. It’s a fantastic idea for horror, but I didn’t think they were that well made, including the original. (New Nightmare and Freddy’s Dead were neat though).

Like the Friday the 13th remake, which I also enjoyed, it takes the core idea of the original, does it well and makes it scary. 8.8/10.

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