Freddy Vs. Jason – Movie Review

Freddy Vs. Jason

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Happy Friday the 13th everybody! It’s me, Slick Dungeon, back to review the meetup of two titans of horror, Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees in a film quite obviously titled Freddy vs. Jason. If spoilers are what gives you nightmares, be warned I’ll be slashing my way through my thoughts on the movie. So, if you haven’t seen it, run through a cornfield and hope not to meet a flaming Jason on the way and watch the movie. Then come on back here to read the review.

For years horror fans had clamored to see a couple of the biggest names in horror meet up. We’d even seen a tease of it years before this famous crossover came out. But due to lots of behind the scenes copyright issues and negotiations it was delayed so much that both Freddy and Jason ended up having movies set far in the future before this one actually takes place. Who would win, and deliver more fear, between the machete wielding, hockey mask wearing, un-killable lunatic, and the man who has a burned face, knives for fingers, and can invade your nightmares? Surely this would be an epic battle and one of the scariest movies of all time right? Meh. Not so much.

Both Freddy and Jason have gone to hell at this point. Freddy is having a bit of trouble because Springwood doesn’t seem to remember him. And if no one remembers him, no one is scared of him. If no one is scared of him, Freddy has no power. Good thing for Freddy, Jason is an unstoppable killing machine. So Freddy decides to let Jason loose in Springwood, assuming correctly that people there would think it was Freddy doing the killing. Freddy’s legend would grow again and he can terrorize teenagers once more. At least, that’s how he wanted it to work.

What the movie results in here is more of a… clip show? Yeah. One of the biggest problems with this movie which was made for fans who already love both franchises is that the film makers seemed to feel the need to rehash a whole bunch of what we’ve already seen to explain who Freddy and Jason are. They recreate some of the famous scenes from both franchises and those are somehow the most interesting part here.

That’s not to say there is no good stuff in this movie. It is definitely fun to watch Freddy and Jason fight. Freddy wins in the humorous quip department because, well, Jason doesn’t ever talk. But Jason is also quite the workhorse and he’s pretty hard to stop. They also bring back Jason’s mother for a few scenes and that’s always a good touch.

Once Freddy gets Jason out in the real world, Jason starts killing teens as all of us might expect. Said teens don’t know about Freddy or Jason but the police who are trying to do everything they can to cover up the existence of Freddy Krueger say the name Freddy Krueger right in front of the teenagers.

The teens fall asleep and Freddy visits them but he’s still not strong enough to get them so he lets Jason run wild for a bit. More teens die but now they have a person in a hockey mask to blame. Some people seem to know this is Jason because… well there was a cop from Crystal Lake but for no other reason.

When you are threatened with death and you are a teenager what do you do? Throw a huge party in a cornfield of course! At the party, Jason picks off a few more victims but one of them happens to be sleeping. Freddy ain’t too happy about that.

Eventually there is a bit of exposition about both Freddy and Jason and the teens come up with a plan. They want to put Jason to sleep so Freddy will fight him and then drop Jason off at Crystal Lake and high tail it outta there figuring Jason will be home and won’t leave the camp. Either way their odds are better if one of them dies.

We get to see Freddy toss Jason around in the dream world and then we get to see Jason shred up Freddy in the real world. Epic battle ensues. And of course you kill Freddy with fire and you drown Jason to stop them. We get a stinger at the end which implies Jason won the fight but Freddy is never going to be gone for good.

Is this the most enjoyable film of either franchise? No. Is it the worst movie in either franchise? Again, no. I do feel like if they had spent less time telling us and showing us stuff we already knew, this could have come off a little better. Freddy seems funny but menacing for most of this and Jason is certainly the juggernaut he’s become. But at times the film dips into a bit of the ridiculous and it seems like our final teens figure out how to stop Jason and Freddy way, way, way too easily. Not that they don’t have a lot of friends die first.

One issue I have with this is pretty simple. Jason is an undead, unstoppable killing machine. Does he even dream? I mean why would he? That’s never addressed, it’s just assumed he does. Still, that’s kind of a small issue. Also, the teens assume Jason wouldn’t come after them if they leave him in Crystal Lake but did they not notice Jason when he was in the middle of Times Square? Seems like the dude can leave when he wants to.

While the movie does retread a lot of old material, I still only recommend this if you have seen at least some of both franchises. It’s more fun that way. Just don’t expect it to have the intensity of some of the better movies in both franchises. There are still some fun and inventive kills here and they do the best they can with the story here, it just could never quite live up to the hype and build up of what was expected. If you’ve seen all the rest of these movies, give this one a watch.

And I also hope this movie acts as a lesson for horror franchises looking to do a crossover in the future. Make it early, while the buzz is going, but take the time to develop a good story that makes sense. And yes, I am staring directly at your murderous child doll eyes, M3GAN and Chucky!

Superstitiously yours,

Slick Dungeon

M3GAN – Movie Review

M3GAN (2022)

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Hello all you people living out in the internet! It’s me, Slick Dungeon, and I’m here to review the film that goes along with the viral dance video, M3GAN. Please be warned there will be some spoilers here so if you have not seen the movie shut down, take a break, watch the movie and come back here to read the review after.

If you are reading past this sentence, you will be spoiled. What if you took Hal 2000 from 2001, allowed it to learn about death and murder and all the bad stuff humans do, paired it with a human child, and gave it the durability of a terminator robot? Bad things? Do we think bad things would happen if we did that? Yes, the answer is yes. If anyone is working on this as a project right now and happens to read this review, stop it now. Please.

Anyway, this movie is definitely an argument for why we should make sure people working in robotics adopt Asimov’s three laws of robotics post haste.

As far as the plot of the film, here’s how it goes. The movie starts off with an ad for what I can only describe as the worst version of Furby you’ve ever seen. A little girl named Cady is heading towards a snow vacation with her parents. She’s a little distracted by the furby-style toy pet she has in the car and it’s a pretty bad snow storm. The parents die in a car crash.

Cady is orphaned and her aunt Gemma is now responsible for her. Turns out Gemma helped to create that little toy pet and she’s working on a much more ambitious project. Basically a sentient, child sized doll that can learn and adapt. She’s behind on some work projects because of this and has to deliver something amazing. She rushes it a bit and develops M3GAN as the newest hit toy without adding in stuff like parent controls or an emergency off switch of any kind. And also, M3GAN seems to be able to pair with any bluetooth enabled device near her.

Things start off calmly enough. M3GAN is almost like a replacement friend/parent to Cady. While doing some testing in the toy lab M3GAN asks about death after she overhears a conversation. Before anyone can stop her, M3GAN has downloaded everything about the subject on the internet. Her prime directive is to keep Cady safe and this is where, shall we say, stuff hits the fan. A dog bites Cady and soon the dog is no more.

Things escalate when Cady is brought to an outdoor school setting and an older boy bullies her. Let’s just say M3GAN is not a fan. Bad things happen to people who cross Cady and/or M3GAN from this point forward. Even Gemma seems to have lost control.

The most entertaining part of the movie comes in the end when they try to have a global launch for M3GAN as the hot new toy and instead she basically goes on a rampage.

If you’ve seen evil doll or robot movies before, you’ve pretty much seen what happens in this movie. Bodies drop, some people do things they shouldn’t, more bodies drop, and eventually someone has to get a grip on this thing and stop it and we’re given a stinger at the end to imply M3GAN is not entirely gone.

I will say, M3GAN does have a bit more flair than some of the killer doll movies I’ve seen and most of it is entertaining. However, it seems a hundred percent obvious to anyone watching that maybe instead of focusing on the potential sentient death doll for profit, most of this horror could have been prevented if Gemma just did what most normal humans would do and gave her niece a hug instead.

If you like sci-fi or horror movies involving evil little dolls or robots, you’ll probably get a kick out of this one. Ronny Chieng has a pretty hilarious performance here as well and there’s enough humor to keep it interesting. While overall this movie is fairly predictable, it’s still fun. If creepy dolls do freak you out too much though, stay far, far away from this film.

If you’ve seen this what did you think? Let me know in the comments. Should Gemma have just, I dunno, taken Cady to the park instead of going back to work?

Robotically yours,

Slick Dungeon

Prey – Movie Review

Prey (2022)

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Hey everyone, Slick Dungeon, back to review another film. This time I watched the Predator series prequel simply called Prey. I will be giving a few mild spoilers below but nothing major. Still, if you are bothered by that sort of thing, watch the movie then read the review.

Prey is set in 1719 long before the first Predator movie happens. The good news is you definitely don’t need to have seen any of the other Predator films for this one to make sense. And, for my money, this is easily the best movie in that series. It stars Amber Midthunder in an excellent performance and all I can say is I hope we get to see more of her in action films in the future.

If you have seen Predator movies before, you’ll see a lot of what you would expect. There is a hunter with advanced technology hunting humans. The humans are far outmatched for a variety of reasons and the goal here is survival at best. This also has something most Predator films don’t. Character development is a central focus and they take the time to develop the story. While there is plenty of action, especially in the third act, this film feels way more threatening and a lot more thought out than the others by how understated it is. It takes time to build up some fear for the audience and allows us to care about characters before they are killed.

It’s also refreshing to see this happen in a time period where our modern weaponry is not yet developed. The central plot revolves around a woman named Naru who is a healer but wants to be a hunter. She’s underestimated as far as her hunting skills go but is generally accepted by her family and friends. When a lion attacks and one of the tribe’s hunters goes missing Naru joins to find the missing hunter and to kill the lion. Naru is pretty quick to pick up on the fact that there are more dangerous things than lions hunting the party.

I won’t go into too much more detail here but this absolutely ratchets up the tension in interesting ways. Like all of the Predator movies it gets bloody at times but there’s nothing more extreme than usual here.

With the unique time setting and welcome change in protagonists and the time given to develop a story, this shines as the best of the series. If you don’t really like action movies or hate all of the Predator movies this is probably not for you.

I didn’t think we needed a Predator prequel at all so I was really pleasantly surprised here. If you’ve watched the other Predator films and were kind of done with them like I was, this will breathe a bit of life back into the franchise for you. If you’re curious and you’ve never seen a Predator movie, my recommendation would be to watch this one and maybe the first Predator but stop there. This will be the best one on the list for sure.

Stealthily yours,

Slick Dungeon

Adult Swim Yule Log (AKA The Fireplace) – Movie Review

Adult Swim Yule Log

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Hello internet, Slick Dungeon here! I know it’s a little late for a yule log but I heard about this movie and was told I just have to watch it. It’s definitely not what I expected. This one is really hard to review without spoilers but I am going to do my best to remain spoiler free here. I am going to give a few odd warnings for a yule log though.

Adult Swim Yule Log starts like any other yule log video you could watch. Like, when you’re at a Christmas part on Christmas eve and you decide to just throw an image on in the background with some soft music playing that feels warm and homey and spreads that good ol’ holiday cheer. If you were take the first three or so minutes of this movie and put it on a loop, you would not be able to tell a difference from those popular YouTube clips and this film.

But if you want to see some interesting and downright weird stuff just keep watching. Around three minutes in, the frame of the fire gets interrupted by someone vacuuming and from there it turns into one of the most insane movies I have ever seen in my life. If you are a horror fan and you are tired of all the usual stuff and need to see something different, oh this one is it. I guarantee there is something here you are not at all expecting.

But, some trigger warnings for viewers of this particular yule log, there is a fair amount of gore and violence here so be warned. It’s also odd to say this but the acting in the yule log video is pretty good and they sell a fairly outrageous story. There’s a few loose ends that don’t seem like they tie together completely for me but if you have a decently strong stomach for gore and violence watch this one.

I can honestly say, I was not expecting what I saw. This is a film that really works best to go in blindly on so I’m not going to say a lot more about it. Except for this; it’s really nice to see an innovation in horror where someone is not just rehashing old plots but actually trying something new here.

If you want a calming experience don’t watch past the third minute. After that, well my friends, you are on your own and it’s pretty wild.

If you’ve seen this, I’d love to hear what you thought, especially if you went into it blind. Let me know in the comments.

Flammably yours,

Slick Dungeon

New Year, New You – Movie Review

New Year, New You (2019) film

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Hello internet, it’s Slick Dungeon here! Well, today is the last day of 2022 and I’m sure there are plenty of people out there thinking about making New Year’s resolutions. One of mine will be to watch more movies and post about them on this here blog. But, not all resolutions are good and you shouldn’t necessarily listen to anyone on the internet telling you how to live your life. For these reasons I decided to watch the horror film on Hulu titled New Year, New You. Be warned there will be some spoilers ahead. I’ll try to keep them mild but if that sort of thing bothers you, give the movie a watch and then come on back here after.

Still with me? Good. You know how at the end of the year, mixed in with all the best of lists, the reflections on celebrities we lost, and headlines of what’s going to be the next big thing, we get tons of self help style videos from influencers telling you how to live your best life? Have you ever wondered if those videos are pretty much full of garbage like you think they are? New Year, New You answers that question with a resounding yes.

It’s a small cast of characters set in a single setting but it delivers one of the most epic takedowns of “influencer culture” I’ve ever seen. As far as the plot goes, there are four women who get together a few years after a traumatic event has happened. Three of them are living fairly normal lives, working, dating, and struggling to just get through the day for the most part. The fourth woman is a media influencer who is wealthy due to a line of health and wellness products she sells through her videos.

As you might guess there is more to the story and the past events than it seems. You might put this movie under dinner party horror. You could also call it a revenge gone wrong film. But, in my opinion, this is what I Know What You Did Last Summer had the potential for but failed to live up to.

The acting performances here are basically perfect although there is one character who seems to be led around a little too much for me to fully believe it. I was definitely guessing at most turns in the plot and there are several jaw dropping moments that make this worth a watch.

There’s nothing here overly gory. In fact, most of it is not scary at all. If you have any empathy in your soul you will feel uncomfortable for most of the movie though. The first act is a little bit of a slow burn but by the start of the third act, things really get going. There are not tons of scares, although there are a few twists. But, each moment that is meant to be shocking delivers fully on the shock.

I don’t think this is one I would rewatch over and over again or anything but I’m glad I watched it once at least. If you like a sort of slow burn horror without tons of blood but that still manages to be really shocking, this is for you. Also, if you’re sick and tired of advice about how you need to change your life just because the calendar date is getting one year bigger, watch this and you won’t feel that way anymore.

Stay safe out there, have a happy new year, and I’ll see all the rest of you in 2023!

Annually yours,

Slick Dungeon

The Nun – Movie Review

The Nun 2018

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Hey there horror fans, it’s Slick Dungeon here! A while back I took a poll on this blog to see what horror series I should review next and The Conjuring universe won. It took me a while to figure out the proper order of watching these films since there is more than one way to do it and I have never seen any of these. I found that the timeline recommended to be scariest starts with The Nun from 2018. I took a watch and I’m here to give you my thoughts. Do be warned there will be some mild spoilers for this movie so if you haven’t seen it, give it a look, come back here and then read the review.

I will admit supernatural horror where there is something like demon possessions has never really been my favorite type of horror. I don’t have anything against it at all and I can see why it really scares some people but it has to be of amazing quality to scare me. The only example I have so far where that worked for me was The Exorcistt and that might be because I was probably too young to watch it. But, I’m willing to give any good horror franchise a shot. Disclaimers out of the way, let’s get into the review.

The Nun takes place in 1952 in Romania. The feel of the film and the setting and atmosphere give the impression of a time even before that with its rural and remote setting in a peaceful (appearing) countryside. At the start, a pair of nuns are trying to keep something horrible locked away through the power of prayer. One of them is basically sucked away and presumably killed off screen. The remaining nun continues to pray but hangs herself.

Some time later a man with the curiously lazy nickname of Frenchie (you know because he speaks French) finds the dead nun hanging and the Vatican is contacted. From here the story really gets going. We meet a Father Burke and a Sister Irene who have been tasked with finding out exactly what is going on at the abbey. Sister Irene has not yet taken her vows although she is as committed as any other nun and truly believes in her faith.

A lot of standard horror tropes happen from this point. There is some lurking evil that people in the village seem to be afraid of. The abbey is seen as an isolated place where bad things have happened in the past and there are more than a few false scares and jump scares which turn out to be nothing but wind. And, of course, there are the real scares and the real evil residing in the abbey.

Things are suspiciously off when Father Burke arrives and it seems the abbey has its own way of doing things. It might be a little unusual but nothing too outright scary. That is, until night falls.

I don’t want to spoil too much of this movie but there are a few parts that really work well. My favorite was when Father Burke comments about graves which had bells on them. The idea was the people buried there were worried about being buried alive. The bells could be rung if that was the case and then someone would dig up the coffin and free the person. You can probably guess this but Father Burke ends up in one of those graves. It’s extremely claustrophobic and really is one of the scariest parts of the film.

The other standout scare in my mind was related to Sister Irene who is praying with a bunch of nuns to fight off evil. They disappear and we realize Irene has been alone this whole time. It wasn’t a jump out of your seat kind of scare but it was effective in giving me the creeps.

The rest of the movie is mostly standard horror stuff where the characters need to find out the background of what is haunting the place and figure out how to stop it. It turns out bombing in World War II interrupted the protections that were locking in the evil inside the abbey. There’s a bit of item and clue gathering and a final confrontation.

I will say, for my taste, this movie relies a little too heavily on jump scares and the third act feels almost more like an action film than a horror film to me.

But, here’s where going into something blind can be fun. And I beg your pardon here because I have to drop a pretty big spoiler to explain it. At the end of the events of The Nun we flash forward in time and see a university seminar in Wakefield, Massachusetts. This seminar is given by Ed and Lorraine Warren. We see them showing footage of a man being exorcised. This man is Maurice who we knew as Frenchie for most of the movie. As soon as I saw the names Ed and Lorraine Warren, something clicked in my brain. I was sure I had heard the names before. I knew the characters were from The Conjuring because I knew Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga were in that series. What finally came to me was the people they are playing are the ones who investigated The Amittyvill Horror. I actually did not know there was any connection to those movies and The Conjuring.

While I didn’t find this to be the most frightening or original of films, there are enough good scares and story hooks here to make me curious about the series. I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes from here.

If you like a movie with supernatural horror, a few good scares, and a whole lot of jump scares, this is definitely one to check out.

Faithfully yours,

Slick Dungeon

Halloween Ends – Movie Review

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Happy Halloween everyone! Slick Dungeon here and I thought maybe the best way to close out the month of Halloween would be to do a review of the (supposedly) final chapter in the Halloween franchise, Halloween Ends. Do be warned there will be some big spoilers here so if you haven’t seen the movie yet, grab a big ol’ butcher knife, carve yourself a Jack O’lantern, put on the movie and give it a watch and then come on back here to read the review.

If you don’t know, the true birth of the slasher craze can be directly pointed to the very first of the Halloween movies. That one was made in 1978 with a shoestring budget and has sparked a ton of sequels, reboots, remakes and other media involving Michael Myers, the killer from the original film. It’s also got some content that has nothing at all to do with Michael Myers. And that’s not including all of the copycat movies and franchises that followed in the spirit and footsteps of the original.

This last movie, Halloween Ends is intended to finish the Halloween story (the one involving Michael Myers). I’m a big fan of this franchise, although some films in it are far better than others. And really, if you simply watched the original and stopped there, that would be good enough for me. I do like several of the sequels but you get everything you could want with the first one and from then on the best films in the series have hit on very similar themes. At some point I will do a deep dive review of all the movies in this franchise but for now, if you haven’t seen the original and you’re looking for a movie to watch on Halloween night, go watch it, you won’t regret it.

I’m going to give one more warning here before I go into the film review for Halloween Ends because to give this film its full due for a review, I have to spoil a couple of major points.

The last three films in the Halloween franchise are not reboots but rather intended to be direct sequels to the first film. Halloween (2018) saw Michael Myers return as the silent stalker from the original film, only years had passed. He was still pursuing Laurie Strode who had survived the events of the first movie. But in a fairly interesting twist, Laurie had not idly been waiting, she’d been preparing for this day, determined never to let anyone get the best of her again. Halloween Kills continued the events of the night from the 2018 film but also flashes back to other characters from the 1978 incident. The whole film is a rather interesting take on mob mentality and is one of the most brutal and bloody films I’ve ever seen, thus earning the title Kills.

While all three of the films, Halloween (1978), Halloween (2018), and Halloween Kills (2021) have seriously interesting things in them, Halloween Ends (2022) should be the most engaging and dramatic and also wrap up the story.

Well… it does wrap up the story. This was one of the oddest film going experiences I have ever had in that what I was feeling about the movie kept constantly changing.

The start was brilliant. There were lots of terrible things that happened on October 31 in Haddonfield Illinois and not all of them directly involved Michael Myers. We start by visiting the events of what happened to a character named Corey that night. As Myers was out on a rampage, Corey had picked up a babysitting job. The kid Corey is babysitting is a little terror and taunts Corey enough to freak him out. This causes the accidental death of the boy Corey is babysitting. Corey is put on trial and found innocent.

I thought this was a really interesting take because it’s a tragedy that had nothing to do with the main events we paid our money to see. And, the death of the kid Corey is babysitting is one of the most brutal I’ve seen and it was completely accidental. If the movie right after this really picked up the story of what had gone down with Michael and Laurie (who are on the poster as the main attraction) I think I would have thought this film was amazing.

Instead, most of the movie is about… Corey. Yeah. Michael Myers is in the film but it’s mostly not about him. It felt like a slog getting through the rest of the film because we were watching a movie about a guy we just met rather than a movie about the character who has been the big star since 1978.

I’m not going to spoil too much of the middle of the movie, except to say that a lot of it doesn’t make much sense, Michael’s ability as a killer come into question here, and Corey gets to be the killer. I almost think this would make a good movie if you watched the first scene and then forwarded to the final confrontation and left the rest out.

So, the question this movie tries to answer is, whether or not Michael Myers is gone for good. If you watched the movie, I don’t see how anyone could have any doubt Michael is done for. And his demise and eventual end is really, really satisfying. We see Laurie Strode do away with him and, seriously, she is the only character who should get to do that. And it’s done with such finality that those scenes had me cheering out loud. It’s just a major shame this film strays so far off from the story for so long. I really want to like this one and there are some absolutely fantastic moments any Halloween fan is going to love. But it just doesn’t add up to what we should have to make a great movie. The end of Michael is great and the wrapping up of Laurie’s story is really good but all the rest just does not work.

While I definitely don’t want them to reboot or remake or revitalize this series, I do wish we had just a stronger story here. I’ll say this. If you’ve seen the other Halloween movies you have to watch this one. If you haven’t started watching the series at all, watch the first one and know it remains the best of the bunch. Then it’s your choice if you want to continue but know there will be some rough moments ahead if you enjoy the franchise. And while Halloween Ends is far from being the worst movie in the franchise, it’s just not the best either.

Happy Halloween everyone!

Slick Dungeon

A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010) – Movie Review

A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)

Rating: 2 out of 5.

Happy Halloween month horror fans! It’s me, Slick Dungeon and I’m here to review yet another A Nightmare on Elm Street film. Sharp eyed readers of this blog may notice I have reviewed every Freddy film up to this point in order. But, I’m making an exception here because I am skipping Freddy vs. Jason. The reason I am skipping over that one is I consider it to be part of my Friday the 13th review series and since that movie will be the last of those (come on we need a 13th Friday the 13th movie!) I will be releasing that review on the next Friday… the 13th. There isn’t one of those this October so you’re gonna have to wait. Also, you can probably guess who I am in favor of in this match up by that release schedule.

Okay, that out of the way, I am here to review the remake of the original film in the Nightmare series. This is the one from 2010 simply titled A Nightmare on Elm Street. Do be aware this review will contain spoilers so if you haven’t watched the movie, give it a look, reflect on whether remakes and reboots for horror should be a thing at all, try to sleep, have a nightmare or two, then come back here and read this review.

Wes Craven, Robert Englund, and pretty much anyone else having anything to do with the original series are not to be found in this film. Freddy is instead played by Jackie Earle Haley. It seems the intention behind this remake was to go back to Freddy’s roots and make him the dark, less quip-filled, character Wes Craven originally had in mind.

A lot of the elements of the original are here. The plot is not dissimilar from the first, although it is set in modern day. There is a man invading people’s dreams and if you die in your dreams, you die in reality. His name is Freddy Krueger and he’s a scary looking burned mess of a man who wears a glove with knives on the fingers.

This man has a history of committing unspeakable acts against children and the parents in the town are covering up the fact they murdered him. We even see a lot of the same scenes which were most memorable in the first movie. There’s the ceiling scene, yes that one, and also that other one too. We see the bath scene as well.

This is still a remake though, so there is a bit of a spin on the way the scenes are shot and not everything in the movie is identical. The plot is essentially the same though.

I think that may be the problem with this movie. The original A Nightmare on Elm Street film was groundbreaking. Wes Craven came up with not just a relentless killer, similar to Michael Meyers or Jason Voorhees, but who could appear anywhere. If he can invade your dreams you can’t escape him. It was a brand new way to terrify audiences. In 2010 if you had even seen a horror movie, you knew the story of Freddy Krueger. That makes it nearly impossible to bring new terror to this story.

The makeup they use for Freddy here is more realistic to actual burn victims but somehow it seems less terrifying. With Robert Englund, part of the appeal here is impossible things from your dreams could kill you, so if Freddy wasn’t exactly photo realistic, it didn’t matter, because he was still a dream.

And the CGI effects use here don’t seem as menacing as some of the simple film tricks from the first movie. The ceiling scene, where a victim is thrashed in the air has a nearly cartoonish quality in this film but seems utterly believable in the first one.

There is more of a clear explanation of Krueger’s history in this movie, it doesn’t elevate the story enough to make it truly terrifying. The directing of the film is good and overall the acting is not bad but it’s just not new in any way.

For my money, I would rather see a new innovation in horror than rehash an old classic. If you are a Freddy movie fan, this one is one of the few I would say is totally skippable.

Maybe I’m just biased here because I remember the original movie from when it came out. Are you a fan of horror remakes? If so, let me know in the comments. Maybe there is one that delivers better than this one, and I would be interested in seeing how it holds up.

Nightmarishly yours,

Slick Dungeon

Wes Craven’s New Nightmare – Movie Review

Wes Craven’s New Nightmare

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Hello horror fans, it’s me, Slick Dungeon! I’m back to review one of the most meta horror movies ever made, and the seventh movie starring Robert Englund as Freddy Krueger, Wes Craven’s New Nightmare. Be warned ahead of time there will be some spoilers so if you haven’t seen this movie about Freddy movies, watch the Freddy movies, watch this movie, then come read this review about the movie about Freddy movies. Got that? Good.

This film is a really unusual entry in the annals of horror. It’s made by Wes Craven, who, of course, made the first Freddy movie, and went on to create the Scream franchise. But this movie, in my opinion, is one that yet again proves Wes Craven is a true master of horror.

Freddy Krueger had been terrifying and delighting audiences for six straight films. That’s not counting television shows, novels, comic book, video games and other media Freddy appeared in. In other words, everyone knew wha to expect from Freddy. But fans were still clamoring for more. After all, Freddy is great at haunting our dreams.

When New Line Cinema wanted to do yet another Freddy movie, they could have gone in a lazy direction and just tacked on another movie or done a pure remake or reboot. Instead, they made a genius decision to bring back Heather Langenkamp, Robert Englund, and John Saxon who all starred in the first film. Only this time, Heather Langenkamp and John Saxon don’t play Nancy and Donald Thompson, they play Heather Langenkamp and John Saxon. Robert Englund does play Freddy, but he also plays… well, Robert Englund.

The movie starts out with us believing we are in a production set for an upcoming Freddy movie. This being a Nightmare film, it’s of course a dream and carnage quickly ensues. Heather wakes up in the middle of an earthquake and we realize this whole scene is just a nightmare. Heather has a son named Dylan who is played by Miko Hughes to an eerily creepy effect.

The movie starts to blur reality and fiction when Heather’s husband who is a special effects designer wakes up with a similar cut to one Heather dreamed. And, it turns out, in secret he is working on a new Freddy movie without Heather knowing about it.

The movie is basically about and entity who looks and acts a lot like Freddy but is much darker than the actual Robert Englund, trying to cross into our own reality. Just as in the first movie, Heather starts to sound less and less rational when she is explaining the situation, even though all she is trying to do is save her son.

There are moments of genuine terror here, some which rival even the first film. And if you are trying to detect a trend into which Nightmare films are the best ones, the first, third and New Nightmare all are standouts, and coincidentally, those are the ones which star Heather Langenkamp, John Saxon, and of course, Robert Englund. They terrify the most and those actors are highly believable.

The movie does operate a lot like other Freddy movies in that he shows up in dreams and kills people, and the main characters have to stop him. The fact this one is based in our own reality makes it just a bit more terrifying and realistic. While the third act is probably the weakest of the film, it does come to a satisfying conclusion and there’s plenty to get you jumping along the way.

So, if this one is so good, why didn’t it do better at the box office? After all, it’s one of the lower grossing movies in the Nightmare series. There’s a pretty simple answer, and it has nothing to do with the makers of this film. On the same weekend this was released, an independent film no one had heard of called Pulp Fiction came out. For that reason, a good portion of people missed seeing Wes Craven’s New Nightmare and this little gem would be less knows than Craven’s next foray into horror with the Scream series.

If you’ve seen the rest of the Freddy movies but never checked this one out, I highly recommend it. It’s very meta which is an interesting twist and it delivers on the terror.

Nightmarishly yours,

Slick Dungeon