As anyone who knows me will tell you, I'm a big fan of horror movies. From the classical silent films, to the golden age of Universal chillers, to the Hammer remakes of the 50-70s, and to the slasher genera of the 80s horror movies had been great, disturbing, and fun. In recent years, however, horror movies have taken a turn for the worse and have made a habit of remaking classical and foreign horror such as Friday the 13th, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Ring, The Grudge, Dracula, The Mummy, and The Wolf Man. I recently saw this movie so I decided to give my take on it. This is the Illusive One's A Nightmare on Elm Street remake review.
Let me start off my saying Freddy Kruger was probably the greatest slasher villain ever and is undoubtedly the greatest character ever created by Wes Craven. Unlike earlier slasher icons like Michael Myers or Jason Voorhees, Freddy had a voice, a face, and didn't kill camp councilors or baby sitters with a machete or a butcher knife. He killed people in their dreams with knife fingers. These things alone made Freddy the greatest of the 80s slasher villains and the dream idea opened up tons of possibility’s for the ways he could kill people and insured fresh ideas for each movie. There would be a total six movies, a spin off movie, a short lived T.V. series, a crossover with Jason and now a remake.
Like a lot of modern remakes, it’s close in plot and style with the original. Jackie Earle Haley did a pretty good job of replacing Robert Englund as Freddy and went back to demonic Freddy of the original movies, (although he was prone to a wise crack or two). There was enough gore in it to satisfy my personal bloodlust, but at the same time, it wasn't to over the top. In addition it introduced a kind of dream walking that supposedly comes with sleep deprivation and causes the character to lose their sense of reality, adding to the blurred lines of dreams and reality. It also added more back story to Freddy, showing him as an accused child torturing pedophile, instead of a sadistic killer and actually gives the viewer the idea that Freddy might just have be innocent, which was a pretty good twist on the original story.
On the negative side, the movie was definitely a slasher movie. It has all the old shock clichés of slashers such as the killer popping up in the background or foreground of the picture and people in disbelief that what's happening is happening. The acting with a lot of the younger cast members, in particular, is bad and seemed lazy. Another gripe I had was that I felt they showed too much of Freddy's face. In the original movie, the rooms all seemed dimly lit, more focused on the victim then on Freddy, who seemed to be constantly shadowed. In this movie, however, they kept his face in full view whenever he was in a scene, giving him a less demonic appearance. Finally, some of the special effects were bad, particularly when he puts his claw through someone. It’s obviously CG, and makes me miss the old Tom Savini-style gore effects.
If you like slasher movies and the Friday the 13th remake then I recommend this one. It was definitely better than some of the sequels to the original and is better than a lot of the other remakes that have come out in the past decade but still not as good as the original.
All Around 7/10