Halloween Scene: A Nightmare On Elm Street: The Dream Child (1989)

Holy crap, I love this poster. I know it’s in German and have no idea what it actually says, but how creepy is it? A portion of this image was used for some US posters, but flipped and cropped a bit. I prefer this one because it opens the image up to show everything that’s going on. Pretty crazy stuff.

Anyway, it’s been two years since I sat down and watched the first and second NOES movies and then the third and fourth in relative succession. Basically, I liked the first and third movies while the second and fourth were pretty unmemorable. Thankfully, NOES 5 did not fail to continue the pattern.

While I won’t say that Dream Child can stand on its own as a great movie like Dream Warriors can, I will say that there is a lot to like in this film. Director Stephen Hopkins does a great job of capturing the strangeness of dreams and actually created some of the better ones from the whole series (if memory serves). You’ve got the beginning one where we find out how Freddy was born that moves into the main girl’s bedroom and then the insane diving one which changes like eight times while a girl falls. He also did a great job casting Jacob who’s an intensely creepy kid.

The effects and camera work are also pretty damn solid here. There’s a lot of crazy angles that play up the weirdness of dreams. Each kill has a rad centerpiece that’s not always gore, but is almost always interesting and then there’s the last scene battle which takes place in an M.C. Escher painting, basically. All of which reminds me: PRACTICAL EFFECTS ARE THE BEST!

And you know what? The plot’s pretty solid this time around too. Our heroine, Alice who survived the previous installment, can control her dreams, but she’s pregnant and Freddy’s going through her baby to mess with her and her friends. That’s pretty ingenious. There’s also the character of Freddy’s mom who wields her own kind of power.

But, like I said, it’s not as good as 3. You know why? Because Freddy is way too annoying in this installment. He actually kind of ruins this movie. You go through this really crazy dream sequence/kill scene only to wind up with some doofus running around making dumb jokes and calling people “bitch” which basically makes him every drunk girl on every reality show. This balanced out a bit by the end of the movie which does some really cool things I assume will get discounted by the next installment which I’ll probably get to next week. If the pattern holds, I probably will not like it.

Oh, real quick, does anyone know who did the original comic art in the movie, the one that sucks the comic nerd in? It looked familiar, but I can’t place it and a quick Google search didn’t help out much.

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