Thursday, February 26, 2009

Film Review: A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 5: THE DREAM CHILD (1989, Stephen Hopkins)

Stars: 3 of 5.
Running Time: 89 minutes.
Notable Cast or Crew: Wes Craven (yeah, don't fool yourself, he just gets a "characters" credit), director Stephen Hopkins (PREDATOR 2), Lisa Wilcox (NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 4, a WALKER TEXAS RANGER episode), Michael de Luca (the final screenwriter and writer of THE LAWNMOWER MAN and JUDGE DREDD), Jay Ferguson (composer, also did the soundtracks of such films as LICENSE TO DRIVE and DOUBLE DRAGON: THE MOVIE), Robert Englund.
Tag-lines: "Freddy delivers." Straight, to the point. "Now Freddy's A Daddy, He's Killing For Two." A little weaker, but kind of clever, I guess. "Evil has spawned." A bit of a stretch to call it clever. "Freddy has a son." How is that even a tag-line?
Best one-liner(s): See review.

"Alright, Kruger...THIS TIME IT'S FOR KEEPS!" I'm going to present this review like a latter-day Freddy movie. One-liners shall be inserted with reckless abandon and little-to-no logic.

"Told you comic books was bad for ya."

Part Fives are never too kind to a series. And don't say 'EMPIRE STRIKES BACK' cause that's really just the second installment.

"Bon appetit, bitch!"

But at least THE DREAM CHILD doesn't pull A NEW BEGINNING and present a copycat Freddy or some dumb shit of that nature. "Wanna make babies?!" We got Stephen Hopkins directing here, who has kind of a heavy-handed Pro-Life agenda (see also my review of his PREDATOR 2) which he likes to insert into his genre sequels.

"It's a BOYY-OYY!"

But this is not a BAD movie. "Let's rock and ROLL!" [A girl rolls.] There's certainly some surreal, spit-take inducing moments. Like when Freddy uses eight one-liners to kill one kid. "Better not dream and drive!"

"This boy feels the need for speed!"

"Put your pedal to the metal, Dan!" "Bad year, Dan!" Or when Freddy shreds the 'nar on a glove-shaped skateboard.

"School's out, Kruger!"

And did Freddy's arm just get ripped off and disintegrate into a pile of red and green-striped sweater wearing spiders?! "Is she delicious... or am I CRAZY?" "Filet de Barbie!" Wow, this is exhausting. "Kids...always a disappointment." Wait, that's not even a one-liner! Three stars, for keeping me vaguely entertained (albeit with pursed lips and rolling eyes) for 90 minutes.

Freddy: He's like Wally and the Beav's dad. Because he's also like a 'Mr. Cleaver.' 'Meat Cleaver.' Yes, I know he doesn't use a meat cleaver. I only say that because his glove is just like five, long, thin, pointed meat cleavers, hence the comparison.

-Sean Gill


Michael said...

Just stumbled across this review and it's awesome! A review of part 4 would be sweet as well, I'm convinced that 4 is really the finest sequel: you get a brilliant misdirection where it seems the story is about one character for an hour and then it switches course, a resurrection by flaming dog urine, and the most over-the-top yet horrifying Nightmare death ever (the cockroach scene). Just sayin'. Keep up the good work!

Sean Gill said...


Thanks for stopping by and for the kind words- I'll get to the other NIGHTMARE installments eventually, part IV indeed has a special place in my heart, with the cockroach scene possibly being the reason. Although the flaming dog urine certainly can't be discounted either!