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    May 19, 2010

    MOVIE REVIEW: A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET

    A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (English/18+)


    Genre: Thriller/Horror
    Release Date: 13 May 2010
    Distributor: Warner Bros/New Line Cinema
    Running Time: 96 minutes
    Director: Samuel Bayer
    Producers: Michael Bay, Andrew Form, Brad Fuller
    Writers: Wesley Strick, Eric Heisserer (screenplay); Wes Craven (original characters)
    Casts: Jackie Earle Haley, Kyle Gallner, Rooney Mara, Katie Cassidy, Thomas Dekker, Kellan Lutz
    Plot: Based on characters created by Wes Craven in his 1984 sleeper horror hit, Freddy Krueger returns in "A Nightmare On Elm Street", a contemporary re-imagining of the horror classic. A group of suburban teenagers share one common bond: they are all being stalked by Freddy Krueger, a horribly disfigured killer who hunts them in their dreams. As long as they stay awake, the can protect one another... but then they sleep, there is no escape.


    THE VERDICT



    Almost two decades ago when the television has been very kind to many of us, comes the moment when every child in the neighbourhood would scream in terrifying horror. Who doesn’t? Robert Englund’s fierce and cruel outing as the iconic horror of dream, Freddy Krueger and his burnt face and four sharp razor blades were so fascinating yet terrorizing. That excellent era was 25 years ago. Today, Hollywood’s attempt to remake the franchise seems pointless and less intriguing, thus I was left to wonder why they prefer to destroy a genuine classic for the sake of making a fresher breath on the iconic slasher.




    In the remake of the 1984 Wes Craven’s classic but sets in the modern day, a group of teenagers whom had connection in the past dreamt of the same nightmare that revolves around a scary man with burnt face and sharp razors. His name is Freddy Krueger (Jackie Earle Haley), who died a decade ago after vengeful parents burnt him to death for his advance on the children. Each time they fell asleep, the closer they got themselves killed. After watching one by one of their friends died; Nancy Holbrook (Rooney Mara) and Quentin (Kyle Gallner) attempt to link the previous past that connects the series of events and plan to stop the nightmares forever.




    The latest remake of the classical horror came short of expectation. Debutant director Samuel Bayer did all the best but unsurprisingly, the slasher did not lived up to it s expectation. Was it not bloody enough? No, the bloods are pouring and spraying everywhere but only to the scale of making terrorizing for sake. Was it scary enough? Certainly, not so much for the new Freddy. I barely have moments when I need to jump out of the edge of my seat. Was it emotional tingling? Barely. These are some of the charms lost when we compared the remake with the original; truly some disappointment to be reflected here. The only good thing is perhaps how the script has involved a deeper maniac and characteristic in Freddy – the new Freddy is not only a child-killer, he is a paedophile as well.




    The other problem in this movie is that the story is almost predictable and does not focus on the terror raised by Freddy. Rather, I thought that there are many elements heavily borrowed from the franchise as a whole. Reboot, remake or what ever you want to call it does not serve much justification at all. It does not reinvent or create a new side of approach in the story-telling, rather recycling things can’t be good at all. Also, I noticed that the centre of attention is no longer about Freddy himself. It seems that the story packs on a group of teenagers died one by one, bit by bit. Does it stands out from other franchise like The Final Destination or Friday The 13th?




    Jackie Earle Haley is a stunning actor. Watch his outing as Rorschach in Watchmen or the paedophile in Little Children. But seeing him in this film did not result the same impact as he did before. It’s a little underwhelming, although in most of the time, he managed to utter some memorable quotes and scenes behind the prosthesis plus FX appearance. Nancy Holbrook, played by newcomer Rooney Mara is a little disappointing. Supposedly homage to Nancy Thompson from the original, her performance is insignificant enough, only to spring to life on the second half – that’s because everyone had died!


    IN SHORT




    Sadly, this remake of the 1984 classic fells below the expectation and all the anticipation built up. It does not have a proper direction and relied so much on the elements from the past. It is not as scary or as vengeful as the original and much of attention is given to fulfill the story of how people died one by one. It does not have the elements that we missed form the old Freddy. I hope the legendary icon really speak out, please!


    THE RATING
    Story - 2.5 stars
    Casts - 2.5 stars
    Cinematography - 3.0 stars
    Effects - 3.0 stars
    OVERALL - 2.5 stars
    GREEN-TEA-O-METER: 10.6
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