2-4 - Movie Review: A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET Part 5New Line Cinema
1989
R

“Hi, Alice. Want to make babies?”

Unable to overpower the Dream Master who vanquished him in A Nightmare On Elm Street 4, Freddy haunts the innocent dreams of her unborn child and preys upon her friends with sheer horror. Will the child be saved from becoming Freddy’s newest weapon or will the maniac again resurrect his legacy of evil?

The fifth entry in the Nightmare On Elm Street series finds the heroine from The Dream Master–Alice–graduating from high school and going about her normal life as a part-time waitress of a cafe’, when she starts experiencing waking dreams that feature a nun getting raped by 100 maniacs and giving birth to Baby Freddy, and then witnessing Baby Freddy spontaneously growing into Freddy again, because we can’t just zap the guy with lightning to bring him back to life like we seem to do with Jason Voorhees. So now Freddy’s back, and after Alice’s boyfriend is taken out by him the night of their graduation, she’s hard pressed to convince her friends that Freddy’s real and is ready to slice-n-dice his way into everyone’s hearts. And various other body parts. It takes a bit, but when another dies and one other is almost gotten, they start to understand that Alice may not be as crazy as they think. Also, Alice is pregnant with her dead boyfriend’s baby, and Freddy is trying to mold the lil’ neonate into his image through his dreams. So now Alice not only has to take the battle to the dream world to fight for her friends’ lives, but also her unborn child’s life. And it’s going to take some assistance from the spirit of Freddy’s mother herself to fight him.

Looking over the history behind this entry in the series, it looks like it wasn’t very well liked by Robert Englund, but Lisa Wilcox (who played Alice in this and the previous entries) liked the darker, more Gothic tones, but not so much the darker subject matter and scenes. Which are the points that actually makes this one of my more favorite entries in the Nightmare On Elm Street series. It does have a very strong Hammer-esque Gothic quality and atmosphere both cinematic and story-wise. The movie overall is very dark, which is something that seems to be missed when attempting to do something with it nowadays. This one manages to hit some very dark topics, while the kills seem to be more of an incidental thing. I do admit, the characters did seem to come off more as caricatures, but as the movie filled out, the depth of them began to show. Not so much the parents; pretty much from the get-go, the actors who played the parents were hammy, over-the-top and annoying.

Overall, I rather enjoy The Dream Child. It’s dark, not as cheesy as it could have been (though Freddy is his usual playful self), and compared with certain other entries in the series, is one of the stronger ones in the list. Recommended.

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