Thursday, April 24, 2014

Nightmare on Elm Street

My love for the horror genre started at a young age. At this point you've all heard the stories of Beth and I at eight years old, huddled together watching horribly gruesome movies that our parents had allowed us to rent from Coast to Coast. We weren't watching the classic horror movies though. Our love for horror films has always leaned more towards the "super shitty" variety. I remember one in particular that we rented a lot which was just a collection of scary shorts, one of which involved a dog getting microwaved.

So when I say that I'm a fan of the genre, I typically get grilled about which classics I like the best, and my response is always, "Umm...well...I haven't seen any of those, but have you seen Ticked Off Trannies With Knives?! It's ahhhmmmmmaaaaaaaaazzzzzzing!!"

I totally didn't even make that up.
This week I continue my movie education with the Wes Craven classic, Nightmare on Elm Street.

I already knew the premise of the movie from, you know, pop culture, but otherwise I was entering the franchise pretty fresh. I mean, I guess I saw the 2010 reboot, but the only impression that it left on me was, "Thomas Dekker...preeeeeeeeettttttty..."

**Attention: Spoilers Ahead...but this movie is from 1984, so you can't really bitch if you too haven't watched it yet**

The movie opens with Freddie chasing a hot blonde chick around a boiler room in her nightgown. I know full well that she will be the first to die...because she's a hot blonde chick, and Wes Craven loooooves killing off hot blonde chicks. Sorry 'bout your luck, blonde chick. 

Just as Freddie is about to slice her up with his finger knives, she wakes up and realizes it was all a dream. She's relieved until she looks down and sees her nightgown has been sliced open right where Freddie attacked in her dream. SpooOOooky!

Our hot blonde chick, Tina, meets up with her hunky bad boy boyfriend, Rod, and their two virgin friends the next morning. You can tell they're virgins by the number of sweater vests they wear and also because their names are Glen and Nancy as opposed to Rod and Tina, which are basically 80's porn names. They pass by a yard where three identically dressed little girls jump rope and sing a song about counting and everyone's impending death.

Open your eyes, idiots. Little girls singing are always, always, always a harbinger of doom (which is why I'll never watch Annie).

They all realize that they've had the same dream about the same scary man in the striped sweater with finger knives. Because they're all so spooked, they decide to have a slumber party to make themselves feel safer. Now...if it was me...and all of my friends were having the same terrifying dreams? I'd maybe be finding a new clique to hang out with so that when Freddie comes calling I could be like, "Oh, Nancy? We don't really hang out that much. I don't even think I have her cell number anymore. She lives over on Elm Street though. I could draw you a map if you think it'd help?"

Tina, Nancy, and Glen hear a strange noise in the back yard. Instead of hightailing it out the front door, they go out to investigate the noise...all of them.

With only Sweater Vest Johnny Depp to protect them...
At this point, they're f#%!ing idiots for not realizing they are living a horror movie. There's the creepy singing little girls, the super weird matching dreams, the fact that their friend group is wildly mismatched with different horror movie archetypes, and they were staying at Tina's house because her parents were out of town.

I've been convinced I'm living a horror movie for a lot less.

For instance, while in San Francisco we stayed at a place through Airbnb, which is a service that allows you to rent other peoples' homes while they are out of town. The place we were staying was super cute, but I couldn't shake the feeling that there was something weird about the whole thing. I was freaked out out by the strange art on the walls, there were unexpected drafts, and they didn't have a TV...something was obviously wrong with these people.

I was in a full on panic when we got home from a night of drinking and I found a closet door that wouldn't open. The girls I was with tried to calm me down by telling me it was probably just locked, to which I replied, "Do you see a lock on this door?! If it's locked, it's locked from the inside of the closet! And that's supposed to make me feel better?! GET YOUR HEADS OUT OF YOUR ASSES!"

We survived the weekend, and I rested easy knowing that if something did go south, I was staying with three hot blonde chicks. I know who survives this horror movie.

The ominous noise our hapless main characters heard turned out to just be Rod being a douche bag. He shows up, asserts his masculinity by wearing a leather jacket and a shirt only buttoned at the bottom, and takes Tina in to her parents bedroom to have loud sex (like really loud that it made me wonder if I've been doing it wrong). Nancy, on the other hand, took the twin bed and just made Glen jerk of by himself on the couch (Okay, so that's not in the movie, but I'm sure it's one of the deleted scenes).

The horror begins again after Tina falls asleep and starts to dream. Dream Tina hears a noise outside and goes to investigate with no pants on (which I can actually respect). Freddie does a bunch of super scary stuff and ends up killing her pretty violently while Rod stands by the side of the bed watching her thrash and bleed.

I probably should have been pretty horrified, but...

Dat ass!

Nancy begins chugging coffee to prevent herself from falling asleep, but she dozes off in class the next day, and see's Tina beckoning her from inside of a bloody body bag.

...and the bitch follows her.

She's of course attacked by Freddie, and she acts all surprised by it! GURL! You followed your friend's body bag into a boiler room! What the f#%! did you expect?! It was at this point in the movie that I quit rooting for her, and I started counting all the ways that Nancy deserves to die.

Your best friend is murdered viciously, and you're pretty sure that you're being hunted by a monster in your dreams...the same monster that this friend told you that she was dreaming about before she was murdered. What's your next move?

Nancy's next move is a nice relaxing bath.

You're almost drowned in the bathtub because a dream monster attacked you when you inevitably fell asleep. You realize you need to stay awake at any cost. What's your next move?

Nancy's next move is to crawl into bed and watch a horror movie.

Bitch, what is wrong with you?! If I had to stay awake or I'd die, I certainly wouldn't hop into bed! Also, I feel like putting in a horror movie is kind of a big middle finger to the fates! "These past few days sure have been intense, but I just really wish that I was more scared right now..."

If there's one thing I've learned from television and movies, it's that high school libraries have some of the most comprehensive collections of occult books in the world. Maybe you could get off your ass and try to figure out what the hell is going on?

You're in a fight to the death with the guy who killed all of your friends while wearing only your pajamas. You come across a knife just lying there. What is your next move?

Nancy's next move is to grab for the crucifix hidden underneath it.

You're dating Bare Midriff Johnny Depp. What's your next move?

Nancy's next move is to not bang him.

Plus she's wastes vodka. She's the worst.

Towards the ending of the movie I started to figure it all out. Freddie is going after all four of the main characters, but he only kills them after they get all sexy.

Doesn't own a hairbrush.
This bitch is going to be in the sequel, isn't she?

In a tremendous show of bravery, our awful heroine stands up to Freddie, turning her back to him and telling him that she's not afraid of him anymore thereby taking his power away. Freddie disappears into an explosion of 1984 computer generated pixelation and 8-bit video game noises. It's super great, if you didn't want Nancy dead. I personally found it to be a little bit of a let down.

Apparently Nancy also has a time machine, because her friends are all alive again. They all get into a convertible, and they're laughing and joking until the convertible top flaps closed, the windows roll up, and the car starts driving itself away with everyone trapped inside.

Because Freddie is a car now, and we're all supposed to just accept that as an ending.


I looked up the actress who plays Nancy to see if she'd appeared in any of the later movies, or if the car had indeed eaten her. She's in two more, which was disheartening, but I did find out that she also plays Nancy Kerrigan in a made for TV movie called Tonya & Nancy: The Inside Story. Which means if I search hard enough I can see her get beat in the leg with a bat.

So at least I have that...

1 comment:

  1. You'll love one of the sequels with the theme song of "Dream Warrior," performed by Dokken. Only you have to substitute "Drink" for "Dream" and change "don't" to "do." Trust me.