Thursday, May 6, 2010

'A Nightmare on Elm Street' (2010) Review

Note: Spoiler free review on top. For in depth analysis, including spoilers, scroll below the rating.

Let me start by saying I am not one of those people who hates horror remakes. There are many out there who either watch and despise or refuse to watch the remakes altogether. No matter how great the revamped story line is, no matter how engaging the actors are, most people generally cut them to pieces in their reviews. While I am, again, not one of these types of people, the remake of 'A Nightmare on Elm Street' was absolutely dreadful. The original, although not one of my favorite old horror films, featured so much life, vibrancy, and camp, yet it still held to the horror aspect and rose to become one of the most iconic genre films of all time. The newly formed version was dark, dreary, and down right repulsive at times, with its core cast giving little redemption. The violence of course was amped up, which I had no problem with by the way, but the movie suffered so much from its lack of intriguing characters, its numerous disgusting pedophilia remarks, and not to mention the fact Freddy looked like a charred rabbit. The biggest problem the movie suffered from was it took itself far too seriously. I understand completely their need to revamp the original, make it a movie in its own right, which they should do, but the movie they made was far from a master piece. Again, I want to reiterate the fact of liking revamped horror movies, as I am being pretty hard on this film. I was a fan of remakes like The Hitcher featuring Sean Bean and Sophia Bush, as well as The Hills Have Eyes with Aaron Ashmore and Emily de Ravin. Both of these films were depressive, especially the latter, so it's not that I have a problem with dark seeded movies, as long as they have some redemptive qualities. Jackie Earl Haley did well for what they needed him to be, again his make up was atrocious, but he fit the darker Freddy Krueger they were shooting for. The cast of heros left a lot to be desired with only one or two quality actors in the bunch. When I say one or two I literally mean Katie Cassidy, who is no stranger to the horror genre with television shows such as Supernatural and Harper's Island, and the film Black Christmas, another remake of which I am not a fan. So all in all I will sum up to say, if you've always wanted a darker Freddy, who talks of nothing but raping small children, then this is your movie, if you cringe at the sound of him talking about children having wet dreams and wanting to sleep with them (and believe me, he didn't put it so nicely in the film), I suggest you wait for the next remake.

Pros: Katie Cassidy
Cons: Everything else

Rating: D+

***************** SPOILERS *****************

I did want to go slightly more in depth for those who have seen the film, to better explain my opinion. First of all the editing of the story lines was just bad. It was basically meet this person, follow them for a small period of time, they die, move on to the next. Eventually showing our actual hero 40 minutes into the movie. While I could be exaggerating on the time frames here, the movie had very little flow. The characters, being friends, should have been a bit integrated with their story lines. We first see Dean (Kellan Lutz) in the diner, obviously being the first to die. Kris (Katie Cassidy) comes in long enough to see what appears to be his suicide. We then follow Kris for the next 15-20 minutes, almost appearing to be the lead of the film, only to watch her die. Of course, before she bites it, her ex-boyfriend comes into the picture long enough to see it and get killed 10 minutes later his self. Again, this type of story telling was just odd. It almost felt like 3 or 4 completely separate story lines, although all the characters knew each other enough to find someone right before they died. The biggest problem I had with the film, mentioned earlier, were the pedophile aspects. While the original was in fact a child molester, this film pushed it too far. The writers at one point wanted you to feel sorry for the villain after being accused and burned alive with no trial. Of course I didn't believe that for a second, especially after the remarks made to the once little girls while trying to kill them. Comments on how he remembered their smells, while licking someone's face, wanting to have sex with Nancy as his claw slides between her legs, even as she is dressed in children's clothing. Not to mention the pictures taken or the wet dream remarks. I know you will say I should have expected this coming in, but this film took it to a whole new level. I just wish they had offered a bit more levity to the project or at least given our heros a little more depth.

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