A Nightmare On Elm Street
6/1/2010 6:57:00 AM
Back from the dead is Freddy Krueger. Brought to life by Jackie Earle Hailey (Little Children) this homage to the classic Robert Englund creation doesn’t quite measure up. Director Samuel Bayer made his mark in doing music videos and here tries his hand at the big screen promising to give fans of this horror classic a faithful return to the good old days where bad was good. Unfortunately, the writing here does not measure to up to any of the original films of this classic horror series.
Again the “hook” to Nightmare on Elm Street concerns people trying to stay awake. Once the lights go out and the sleep kicks in its curtains for all comers. Our story returns us to the community of the original assaults. Now grown up some young adults find themselves mysteriously seeing strange occurrences when they fall asleep. One by one a string of deaths develop with little commonality between the untimely departures – at least on the surface.
Produced by Michael Bay you can expect to see lots of nubile young bodies on display here and a wry sense of humour. Bay’s team does not disappoint. First on the “chopping” block is Katie Cassidy (Black Christmas) who sets the right tone as Kris Fowles, a young woman whose friends fall prey to a disfigured madman in their dreams.
At school or at home no one believes the far fetched story Ms. Fowles conjures up. Two other fair-weather friends, however, suffer similar restless nights. Both Quentin Smith and Nancy Holbrook are outcasts at school but uncover a similar nightmare which leads the pair to try to find answers. Rooney Mira and Kyle Gallner (Jennifer’s Body) are convincing as the scared out of their wits friends who wind up in a chase against a bogeyman whose bite is considerably worse than his bark.
Full of ridiculous throw away lines and the standard slash and burn effects A Nightmare on Elm Street may well click in with new young viewers. Unfortunately the writing here is sub par and the scares just aren’t fresh enough to be that impactful. Too few shots of terror and an air of predictability make this movie not that lethal or sensational.
Yes there is a bit of gore and the filmmakers do justice to teaching us about the origins of that gruesome face our Freddie is left with but beyond that this film is just not that engaging or memorable. Good performances can’t mask a weak script which fails to deliver the thrills.
Tame and timid are the results of what should have been a masterful return to one of the most evil characters ever depicted on the big screen. Maybe good for a cold wintry night A Nightmare on Elm Street is short on scares with not too much teeth to make you squirm late at night.