October 25, 2016
        Mel Gibson to be Honored with the Hollywood Director Award at the 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Michael Moore drops a surprise new film with "Michael Moore in TrumpLand"                Hollywood Contenders: New Oscar Predictions for October                Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, Naomie Harris, Lily Collins get Honors at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                "Manchester by the Sea" leads the Gotham Award nominations                Tom Ford, Marc Platt and Kenneth Lonergan to be Honored at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Tom Cruise is in his action hero comfort zone with "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back"                "Moonlight" could be A24's big Oscar horse this year                Ewan McGregor steps behind the camera with "American Pastoral"                Hollywood Contenders: A second crack at Golden Globe predictions for 2016                "The Accountant" seeks to help give Ben Affleck another blockbuster                85 countries will be competing for Best Foreign Language Feature nominations at the Oscars                Tom Hanks to receive Hollywood Actor Award for "Sully" @ Hollywood Film Awards                "Certain Women" showcases Laura Dern, Kristen Stewart, and Michelle Williams                Ben Affleck is perhaps Hollywood's biggest and most diverse superstar        

“Nightmare On Elm Street” slashes its way to Blu-ray


HollywoodNews.com stays on top of the latest DVD and Blu-ray releases so you know which films are worth your time and money. This week, we recommend:

A Nightmare on Elm Street (Blu-ray)

One, two, Freddy’s killing on Blu.

As New Line prepares to unleash an updated version of dream stalker Freddy Krueger, the studio revisits Wes Craven’s original 1984 horror and gives it the Blu-ray polish.

Along with Michael Myers (“Halloween”) and Jason Voorhees (“Friday the 13th”), Krueger formed the holy trinity of 1980s horror icons. A child murderer who avoided jail time on a legal technicality, Krueger was hunted and mortally burned by vigilante parents, only to return and haunt his tormentors’ children in their dreams.

Sadly and surprisingly, Craven’s “Nightmare” plays better in my memories than it does in my Blu-ray player. Was Englund’s Freddy always this corny? Craven, who moved to “Nightmare” from the aggressive “Hills Have Eyes,” starts off making a pedestrian, teen hump horror film. Pert, blonde Tina (Amanda Wyss) confesses to dorky best friend Nancy (Heather Langenkamp) that she’s having disturbing dreams about a scarred stalker with knives for fingers. But both girls are too busy fighting off horn dogs Jsu Garcia and Johnny Depp (in his feature-film debut) to do much about it.

“Nightmare” takes a turn for the macabre when Nancy imagines a recently mutilated Tina roaming the halls of their high school in a bloodied body bag. At once, Craven’s vision becomes a sophisticated transition between reality and a terrifying dream-like state, with the characters (and the audience) never really sure which one is which. The groundwork is laid for a rewarding franchise that has its ups and downs but was always good for both laughs and scares.

Without having revisited it, I’m choosing to believe Enguland found hi Freddy groove in the scarier sequel, “Freddy’s Revenge,” which Craven refused to sanction. It’s unfortunate New Line didn’t use the release of the new “Nightmare” as an excuse to dive into a proper box set for the series. This original Blu-ray gave me a taste for Freddy’s carnage, but the “Nightmare” exploration ends here for now.

Special features on the Blu-ray include two commentary tracks; three brief alternate endings (including Craven’s preferred “happy” ending); clips on the influence “Nightmare” had on the health of New Line as a studio; a “making of” reel; an interactive trivia track; the feature-length “Focus Points,” which delves into behind-the-scenes features; and more.

The movie – **1/2 out of 4
The Blu-ray – ***1/2 out of 4

About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

Follow us

Breaking Hollywood News   


Leave a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.