Review – A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)

The first Nightmare on Elm Street was a low budget, surreal shocker. The classic slasher film would spawn many sequels, a television series (“Freddy\’s Nightmares”, 1988), pop songs (“Nightmare on My Street”, DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince) and would launch the careers of actors like Johnny Depp, Patricia Arquette along with directors Renny Harlin (Die Hard 2, The Covenant) and Stephen Hopkins (Ghost and the Darkness and The Reaping). Writer and director Wes Craven would redefine the horror genre much like he did years previous with Last House on the Left. The idea of a killer murdering his victims in their sleep would turn the industry on its ear.

With the recent wave of 80\’s film remakes, especially horror films, it was only a matter of time before the antihero Freddy Krueger would be resurrected to slash his way into teen\’s dreams once again. The 2010 updated version lackes the soul and fun of the original. Director Samuel Bayer, known for directing music videos for Nine Inch Nails and Smashing Pumpkins, has some pretty big shoes to fit.  He achieved a few visceral scenes but the remake script falls flat with its slow pacing and holes in plot and logic.

The movie is not without some bright spots. Jackie Earle Haley makes a creepy Freddy Krueger. He slips into the character like a glove. Even though Robert Englund will always be the real Freddy. (I was shocked as a kid to know that Freddy was the nice alien from “V”.) Now the new generation will realie that the new Freddy is also Rorschach from Watchmen. Another postivie is that the cast is attractive. But it\’s a bummer when one of the prettiest girls is bumped off early in the film.

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