For those of you who didn’t already know, New Nightmare is part 7 of the Nightmare on Elmstreet series. Wes Craven, however, obviously wanted to make more out of this movie than just another sequel and therefor also removed the Nightmare on Elmstreet title.
But not only the title is different with this movie. No, Wes Craven really made something original and special out of this film, because New Nightmare is not just a horror film, it is a successful blend of drama with horror, but before I can really say something about that, you should first know a little bit of the storyline.
The movie’s main character is Heather Langenkamp, who played Nancy in Nightmare on Elm street and Dream Warriors (that’s part 3), but this time, Heather Langenkamp plays herself, just like all the other actors in the movie, which means we will see Wes Craven, Robert Englund, John Saxon etc. play themselves. Which also means that we are now in ‘real life’ and the Nightmare on Elm street films are nothing else but movies and Freddy Krueger nothing else than a movie character, played by Robert Englund. You’re still following this?
In real life, Heather Langenkamp has a son (or at least in the movie’s ‘real life’) called Dylan. Dylan, however, has been having episodes lately and is acting really strange and if that wasn’t enough to worry about, Heather is also receiving strange phone calls and letters from an obsessed fan, for a couple of months now, so it’s kind of a stressy situation.
But of course, Heather is still an actress and she is asked to play Nancy one more time in ‘the Ultimate Nightmare’ by Wes Craven. Wes Craven is acting really mysterious about the script, but when Heather asks him about it, he decides to give away a tiny bit of the storyline:
Wes his new movie is going to be about a creature that wants to destroy all innocence. Luckily, the creature can be stopped by storytellers, who can trap the creature inside of a story and for the past 10 years, the creature has been trapped inside of the Nightmare on Elm street movies as Freddy, but now that they killed Freddy off, the creature (who got used to his Freddy Krueger character) is free and wants to come into our world as Freddy Krueger, but in order to do that he first has to destroy Nancy (which means destroying Heather Langenkamp), who is a sort of gatekeeper to our world, because she was the first one to destroy the creature.
When Heather asks Wes when he started writing this script, he says that he started writing on it, a couple of months ago. You all see the connection? And so the question becomes, whether this is just all coincidence or perhaps Wes Craven is writing more than just a script? See the film to find out.
There, I tried to write it down as well as I could, because it is quite a complex storyline, but if you still don’t really get it, you should just watch the movie, because it is really worth it. That is, if you are willing to put aside your ideas about horror films, because New Nightmare is something quite different.
The main storyline for instance, isn’t Freddy trying to come into our world. That storyline doesn’t become important until somewhere near the ending. This, however, doesn’t mean the movie is just going to be boring until that ending. No, what the movie offers until that time, is a well-written drama with enough horror elements in it, to keep the horror audience interested. Because, you see, the main storyline of the film is actually Heather Langenkamp’s struggle to protect her son from harm. Now I know that this might sound ridiculous (since Nightmare on Elm street is pure horror), but take a good look at the movie and you will also see that Wes Craven took a real interest in drama for this movie, which I don’t find surprising, because Wes Craven also likes the drama genre a lot.
But at the other hand, it would be a shame to forget to mention those horror elements in New Nightmare. Wes Craven once again shows us, that he can make horror films (or horror drama in this case) with just that tiny difference in style and atmosphere, that make him a master of horror, because New Nightmare might begin as a drama, it sure ends like a horror movie! Including a totally new and improved Freddy, which must be Robert Englunds most scary performance till now. So go and see this movie (if you haven’t already) and be ready for a movie that is one of the most original in the history or horror.