New Line Cinema | Release Date: November 16, 1984
8.8
USER SCORE
Universal acclaim based on 329 Ratings
USER RATING DISTRIBUTION
Positive:
302
Mixed:
18
Negative:
9
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10
TravisS.Apr 30, 2010
AMAZING.
1 of 1 users found this helpful
10
seiferJul 2, 2012
Freddy Krueger... Brilliant and unique to the world of horror. My favourite horror character of all time; with his corny lines, freakish background before he becomes the monster we love and he is just fabulous (as well as the brilliant actorsFreddy Krueger... Brilliant and unique to the world of horror. My favourite horror character of all time; with his corny lines, freakish background before he becomes the monster we love and he is just fabulous (as well as the brilliant actors that played him). Expand
4 of 4 users found this helpful40
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10
jordyboyMay 3, 2011
A great horror film the best one ever better than the remake but not by much great i loved this movie the acting was great and introducing Johnny Depp wow great movie and i cant tell you how much better this is than friday the 13th
6 of 6 users found this helpful60
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10
MyComicStyleJul 21, 2011
I love this movie, bought the Blu-Ray and it's still amazing. The story's really good, I think. A girl is haunted by nightmares and after a short while she gets killed in a really gruesome way, well, gruesome for the 80's, but still sick.I love this movie, bought the Blu-Ray and it's still amazing. The story's really good, I think. A girl is haunted by nightmares and after a short while she gets killed in a really gruesome way, well, gruesome for the 80's, but still sick. Then the next girl, Nancy, is haunted, like all of her friends, which one by one get killed. Freddy Krueger might just be one of the creepiest guys you'll ever see in a movie. He also has the most awesome weapon, I mean, c'mon, who can beat a glove with knifes as fingers? I am still really impressed with the facial effects of Freddy. That mask put on Robert Englund's face really makes Krueger a believable, as far as a nightmare murderer can be believable.
So, if you're looking for an awesome horror movie, even if it's old, this one's for you.
Little advise: Don't watch this before you go to sleep. This movie still freaks me out, even if I watched it like 8 times.

I'm your boyfriend now, Nancy!
-Freddy Krueger
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7 of 7 users found this helpful70
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10
DravenatorLivesJul 22, 2011
I love every bit of this picture. This is not only a masterpiece of horror cinema, but a masterpiece of indie cinema. Whether you're a budding filmmaker, a horror-freak, or both (I happen to be both), this film is a must-see.
4 of 4 users found this helpful40
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10
RegOzApr 5, 2012
A classic...it will never age! A milestone in the horror genre, that is for sure! There is much to love and nothing to hate about this film (well, we hate Freddy, but we love the idea that he is there, otherwise we wouldn't have had thisA classic...it will never age! A milestone in the horror genre, that is for sure! There is much to love and nothing to hate about this film (well, we hate Freddy, but we love the idea that he is there, otherwise we wouldn't have had this movie!!! ;) ). Nowadays, there are not many horror movies that can compare to this one...very, very few! Expand
4 of 4 users found this helpful40
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10
SpangleOct 4, 2016
All-time I have rated very few films a perfect 10. This is not a rating I take lightly. It has to be a film that is somehow immediately going to be among my favorite films of all-time. It has to be a film that not only has an immediate impactAll-time I have rated very few films a perfect 10. This is not a rating I take lightly. It has to be a film that is somehow immediately going to be among my favorite films of all-time. It has to be a film that not only has an immediate impact upon me while viewing, but is one that sticks with me. As such, it is rare for a film to be initially given a perfect 10. It is something that gets built up to over time when it dawns on me just how perfect the film truly was. A Nightmare on Elm Street is one of those films that I knew about halfway in, there was going to be some internal discussion about whether or not this was a perfect 10. With about 20 minutes left, there was no doubt in my mind whatsoever. A Nightmare on Elm Street is a horror behemoth. Few horror movies exist that are better than this film thanks to a thoroughly creepy atmosphere, otherwordly and inventive premise, horrifying score, and a knack for proving to be absolutely petrifying.

Quintessentially 1980s suburbia, A Nightmare on Elm Street's first achievement is creating likable characters and then dropping them in this supernatural world. Immediately, the audience identifies with these people and is equally confused by what is transpiring in the film. Never truly showing its cards as to the limits of this dream world that director Wes Craven has crafted, A Nightmare on Elm Street keeps you guessing even as you believe that you have begun to figure how things work. This is best showcased at the end where (I'M SET TO RUIN THE ENDING HERE) Nancy Thompson (Heather Langenkamp) declares that Freddy Kreuger (Robert Englund) is merely a dream and has no power over her in the real world. This logic is based upon her being told by boyfriend Glen (Johnny Depp) that there is a culture in which the entirety of their art and literature is created through dreams. For bad dreams, they turn their back to the monster and do not give it power, so they survive and the monster dies. A Nightmare on Elm Street sets you up with this element and provides what would have been a deeply unsatisfying ending in which Freddy dies and Nancy leaves unscathed. I want her to live, but not in some hocus pocus nonsense matter. Craven then brilliantly pulls the rug out from under you and you realize that this nightmare is not over, rather it is just beginning.

This dreamworld created by Wes Craven proves to be one of the most interesting worlds I have seen in a film as it is truly expansive and seems to defy all logic (in a good way). This world proves to make the entirety of the proceedings that much scarier, as you realize that Krueger is always lying in wait for his victims and just waiting for them to sleep in order to catch them. There is no escaping his creepy claw hands or his raspy warnings of your imminent demise. The fear instilled by the thought of Krueger is bolstered significantly by Charles Bernstein. Supplying A Nightmare on Elm Street with a truly tremendous score, Bernstein outdoes himself in assisting Craven to set the right mood with the right downright scary tones played during tense moments. If the events on the screen did not place you on pins and needles, then the ambiance supplied by Bernstein will do the job. Scary in its own right, the score of a horror film is usually the make-or-break element for me when it comes to judging its success. A Nightmare on Elm Street gets full marks.

Often times, a film can lose scariness over time just because it gets a bit cheesy at moments. Admittedly, John Carpenter's Halloween features some of these age spots. I loved it all the same, but it did hold it back from being even better (notice too the cheeky reference to Halloween when Krueger holds up a lifeless white mask that used to the face of Christina, his first victim). In A Nightmare on Elm Street, there are no age spots. No moment played comically, rather each punch thrown by Wes Craven lands with the force offered up by a heavyweight boxer. The end result is a film that leaves you feeling numb, on edge, and thoroughly unwilling to ever sleep again. It is a film that has aged gloriously and not just captures the feeling of 1980s suburbia perfectly, but also dumps you into this world to experience the events alongside the characters.

It is honestly weird. I love horror movies, obviously. However, I would not call horror my favorite genre. Yet, many of my favorite films (The Silence of the Lambs, Psycho, The Shining, and It Follows, for example) are horror films. Adding in A Nightmare on Elm Street, there seems to be a trend at the very top of my favorite films. All the same, when watching a film, I want to be impacted. I want to feel something. A Nightmare on Elm Street delivers on this as it sure as hell made me feel something. Watching this horror behemoth felt unlike any other viewing I have ever undertaken. It is an experience that will not let go and will undoubtedly haunt me in my dreams. Or is it my reality?
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10
CloudernestApr 10, 2013
This is my favorite film. There are all i need...
This is most horrible film ever. I always loved this one. Characters have very emotional role. Plot is very original. Horror may be just call horror, but A Nightmare on Elm Street is realy scary.
6 of 6 users found this helpful60
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10
MovieGoer14Jul 20, 2013
A Nightmare on Elm Street is really creepy and masterful with inventive and original ideas. The visual effects are amazing, first rate intense ideas. The plot is horrifying and scary as hell, with twists and thrills that you will stay withA Nightmare on Elm Street is really creepy and masterful with inventive and original ideas. The visual effects are amazing, first rate intense ideas. The plot is horrifying and scary as hell, with twists and thrills that you will stay with you for a long time. The acting is above mediocre but not perfect. Overall, it is funny, scary and great. Expand
15 of 15 users found this helpful150
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10
lukechristianscApr 11, 2014
as i was watching i was completely bored well some parts i got bored . but i got really entertained when things got juicy . " Nightmare of elm street rocks . Robert Enguland is a kick ass nightmare killer . Grade A+
P.s i cant wait to watch
as i was watching i was completely bored well some parts i got bored . but i got really entertained when things got juicy . " Nightmare of elm street rocks . Robert Enguland is a kick ass nightmare killer . Grade A+
P.s i cant wait to watch nightmare of elm street 2
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4 of 5 users found this helpful41
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10
StrangerinaJul 1, 2014
This film is the ultimate horror experience for me. The settings are memorable and Robert Englund's performance as Freddy Krueger is legendary. The pacing is relentless in its intensity, it never lets go and still keeps lingering for a longThis film is the ultimate horror experience for me. The settings are memorable and Robert Englund's performance as Freddy Krueger is legendary. The pacing is relentless in its intensity, it never lets go and still keeps lingering for a long time after you've watched the movie.

Strong lead characters, Heather Langenkamp and Johnny Depp were a good pairing, and the supporting characters weren't just bland figures in the background. You actually felt the loss of the characters. They certainly have more depth to them than the stereotypical horror film teenagers.

The premise of this story holds together well, and the apparent symbolism isn't completely hidden from you.

Freddy Krueger's character was ill-defined, but intentionally. You can feel Englund's presence as he chases the kids through terrifyingly imaginative dream sequances. Wes Craven truly is one talented director, although he does have the occasional brain fart (The Hills Have Eyes, part 2).

This film spawned my love for cinema. I definitely recommend it.
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4 of 4 users found this helpful40
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10
TylerDurden900Jul 14, 2014
Nightmare on elm street has everything a horror fan could want. The actors are good, the plot is unique
and the movie is intensely scary. Freddy Kruger is one of the most iconic horror movie villains. He is
as recognizable as Michael
Nightmare on elm street has everything a horror fan could want. The actors are good, the plot is unique
and the movie is intensely scary. Freddy Kruger is one of the most iconic horror movie villains. He is
as recognizable as Michael Meyers, Chucky, The Exorcist, Nicholson from The Shining and Pinhead
from Hellraiser. Nightmare is a horror classic that set the bar for genuine terror.
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7 of 8 users found this helpful71
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10
horcrux2007Sep 2, 2014
This is one of the scariest films I have ever seen. It has a very creepy and intriguing premise which it carries out extremely well. The little twists and turns in the plot keep you on the edge of your seat, and the bending between realityThis is one of the scariest films I have ever seen. It has a very creepy and intriguing premise which it carries out extremely well. The little twists and turns in the plot keep you on the edge of your seat, and the bending between reality and fantasy is very original. This is one of my favorite slasher films of all time, and I give it my highest recommendation. Expand
5 of 5 users found this helpful50
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10
UrbanlistenerFeb 25, 2016
A Wes Craven masterpiece like any other! A landmark in the horror genre, with an unforgettable and nasty villain we all came to love and dress up as every Halloween and a great soundtrack that makes the horror scenes much more frightening. AA Wes Craven masterpiece like any other! A landmark in the horror genre, with an unforgettable and nasty villain we all came to love and dress up as every Halloween and a great soundtrack that makes the horror scenes much more frightening. A classic you can't pass up on. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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10
kyle20ellisAug 9, 2016
I love this movie, bought the Blu-Ray and it's still amazing. The story's really good, I think. A girl is haunted by nightmares and after a short while she gets killed in a really gruesome way, well, gruesome for the 80's, but still sick.I love this movie, bought the Blu-Ray and it's still amazing. The story's really good, I think. A girl is haunted by nightmares and after a short while she gets killed in a really gruesome way, well, gruesome for the 80's, but still sick. Then the next girl, Nancy, is haunted, like all of her friends, which one by one get killed. Freddy Krueger might just be one of the creepiest guys you'll ever see in a movie. He also has the most awesome weapon, I mean, c'mon, who can beat a glove with knifes as fingers? I am still really impressed with the facial effects of Freddy. That mask put on Robert Englund's face really makes Krueger a believable, as far as a nightmare murderer can be believable.
So, if you're looking for an awesome horror movie, even if it's old, this one's for you.
Little advise: Don't watch this before you go to sleep. This movie still freaks me out, even if I watched it like 8 times.

I'm your boyfriend now, Nancy!
-Freddy Krueger
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0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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10
FanBoyCritic1Mar 24, 2016
A Nightmare On Elm Street(1984)
Starring:John Saxon,Ronne Blaxely,Heather Langenkamp,Amanda Wyss,Nick Corri,Johnny Depp,Robert Englund
Written and Directed By: Wes Craven My Review A long time has come and gone since the essental slasher
A Nightmare On Elm Street(1984)
Starring:John Saxon,Ronne Blaxely,Heather Langenkamp,Amanda Wyss,Nick Corri,Johnny Depp,Robert Englund
Written and Directed By: Wes Craven
My Review
A long time has come and gone since the essental slasher from the 80's was released and I have been wanting to see it for years. When i first tried to watch this it was the most terrifying movie I had ever seen and I couldn't even finish it. But finally it was on the television once more and I finally got to watch it, what do I think?
Everyone knows at this point what this movie is about. I first saw the sequel Freddy's revenge which was terrible,un-enjoyable,boring,and un-scary. When it was released I saw the remake which was very boring but had a cool looking trailer. Freddy's original outing with Heather Langenkamp is about the small town the elm street teenagers dropping like flies, apparently in the grip of mass hysteria causing their suicides. A cop's daughter (Heather Langenkamp) traces the cause to child molester Fred Krueger (Robert Englund), who was burned alive by angry parents many years before. Krueger has now come back in the dreams of his killers' children, claiming their lives as his revenge. With a supporting cast that includes horror veterans like John Saxon and Ronee Blakley, director Wes Craven creates moments of real dread by examining the line between nightmares and reality, as well as the "sins of the parents" theme.
All of the effects and deaths are still slick,smooth,and disturbing. The movie has aged over the years but it's still pretty cool to watch and I just love how the father just didn't see Freddy at all I personally thought he was going to find out. Heck this movie even introduced Johnny Depp. I give A Nightmare on Elm Street a 5 out of 5.
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1 of 1 users found this helpful10
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10
GamecubeLoverJul 20, 2016
This horror movie is amazing at every second and is my favorite horror movie of all time. The characters are amazing and so are the effects you NEED to watch this movie.
2 of 2 users found this helpful20
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10
Castiel_AngelOct 9, 2016
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Definitely a 10/10 worthy film. My all time favorite horror movie. A Nightmare on Elm Street has a perfect creepy suspenseful type theme to it. The whole idea of a serial killer being able to invade people's dreams and kill them as they sleep is amazing. Expand
1 of 1 users found this helpful10
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10
robertoiglesiasJun 18, 2017
I loved this movie so much! Johnny Depp's first film debut, classic and great deaths, and the best horror villain of all time: Freddy Krueger! I rate this 10/10.
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10
MrTacoBobJul 11, 2017
A new type of horror introduced. In dreams? Heck yes! This movie is very original and scary. It aged very well and it would create a great series to come.
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9
TracyD.Apr 30, 2010
Loved the movie. I have been reading what critics have been saying and I think it is a bit of a joke. I see how one can objectively judge this movie without seeing the original, but wanting it to "say something" or "send a message" is Loved the movie. I have been reading what critics have been saying and I think it is a bit of a joke. I see how one can objectively judge this movie without seeing the original, but wanting it to "say something" or "send a message" is asinine. It would be a bigger issue if the story got away from the original. For those who right articles and reviews without seeing the original miss that point. I was happy to see an updated version of a great horror flick. I would nudge my wife, which hasn't seen the original as well, at which scenes were derived from the original. I didn't see this as another Jennifer's Body or some other horror film that takes all the 17 years olds Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
9
GarethCriticOct 22, 2010
I'm going to go ahead and say that A Nightmare on Elmstreet puts most modern horror movies to shame. A lack of original ideas had destroyed the horror genre but this, in its day, was an extremely original concept in itself - A dead manI'm going to go ahead and say that A Nightmare on Elmstreet puts most modern horror movies to shame. A lack of original ideas had destroyed the horror genre but this, in its day, was an extremely original concept in itself - A dead man killing teenagers in theire dreams and if this franchise hadn't been over used it would still be a great concept. Expand
2 of 3 users found this helpful21
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9
SlasherVoorheesAug 19, 2011
A Nightmre On Elm Street Takes you into a new Relam of Horror with The Iconic Freddy Kruger and This movie truly Represents a Living Nightmare. Freddy Kills Each of his victums in a painful way and They cant do anything about it because itsA Nightmre On Elm Street Takes you into a new Relam of Horror with The Iconic Freddy Kruger and This movie truly Represents a Living Nightmare. Freddy Kills Each of his victums in a painful way and They cant do anything about it because its in thier dreams. After Seeing this Movie you may never Want to go Back To Sleep Expand
2 of 2 users found this helpful20
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9
EssenceOfSugarOct 29, 2013
The natural function of sleeping and dreaming happens to be reserved for this chilling rather than outright terrifying classic. Being 1984, I could expect that the sound quality and the special effects were to be cheap and crackly. However,The natural function of sleeping and dreaming happens to be reserved for this chilling rather than outright terrifying classic. Being 1984, I could expect that the sound quality and the special effects were to be cheap and crackly. However, it was less of my concern that this lack of gloss only helped to provide an authentic, unsettling atmosphere. What my main concern was was the mismatch of music when it played during the chase scenes, which only served to sadly detract from what it was trying to achieve.
Freddy Krueger's appearance and personality personifies the imagination and fear of the unknown in which elements of suspense become just as important as its part in the slasher genre. His scarred face, fedora, striped red and green jumper and all too well known gloves with knives serve to bring to life a standout, recognisable performance whereby he represents a villain that borders on dreams and reality with a maybe awkward inability by the film's main protagonists to distinguish the bridge when it comes to survival.
By using a vital part of everyday life, Freddy's actions have just as much effect on reality as they do in the dreamworld. Safety is immediately compromised when we are at our most vulnerable, so it isn't enough to claim that 'this is a dream, it isn't real', of which it brings a whole new meaning to.
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3 of 3 users found this helpful30
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9
Luke_McLaughlinJul 26, 2013
A Nightmare on Elm Street is one of the greatest horror films ever made, and to this day its title character, Freddy, is one of the most commercialized figures in all of film. Is it one of the scariest movies ever made, absolutely not, butA Nightmare on Elm Street is one of the greatest horror films ever made, and to this day its title character, Freddy, is one of the most commercialized figures in all of film. Is it one of the scariest movies ever made, absolutely not, but for 1984 it was truly groundbreaking. A Nightmare on Elm Street helped put the slasher genre on the forefront, and after its release the world never quite looked at scary movies the same. This film proved that Wes Craven was a master of horror, launched Johnny Depp's career, and established Englund's career making role. For those interested in the horror genre A Nightmare on Elm street is a must see. Expand
4 of 4 users found this helpful40
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9
ydnar4Nov 22, 2014
You can't the original. A Nightmare on Elm Street is just a straight up classic horror film. This film is probably the best film Wes Craven ever did which is saying a lot because Craven really was a pioneer in horror. We are introduced toYou can't the original. A Nightmare on Elm Street is just a straight up classic horror film. This film is probably the best film Wes Craven ever did which is saying a lot because Craven really was a pioneer in horror. We are introduced to Freddy Kruger, a character that would haunt our dreams the next few nights after we watched the movie. I still jump at points in this movie and I've seen it numerous times. Expand
1 of 1 users found this helpful10
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9
SythusRATINGSOct 26, 2014
Nancy Thompson is suffering from violent nightmares about a badly burned man wearing a glove made of knives. She quickly learns that this man – child molester Freddy Krueger – is also terrorizing the dreams of her friends and boyfriend, Glen.Nancy Thompson is suffering from violent nightmares about a badly burned man wearing a glove made of knives. She quickly learns that this man – child molester Freddy Krueger – is also terrorizing the dreams of her friends and boyfriend, Glen. As they begin to die one by one in their sleep, Nancy learns, that years prior, the parents of Elm Street burned Krueger alive – and now Freddy is back to claim their children’s lives as revenge! As the teenagers of Elm Street fight to stay awake, Nancy must save their lives and her own by bringing Freddy out of their dreams and back into the real world to destroy him forever. Expand
2 of 2 users found this helpful20
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9
youlouzMar 1, 2015
Very great plot-line and movie, and great jump scares. A little too unrealistic however. .
2 of 2 users found this helpful20
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9
Le__XenomorphDec 28, 2014
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I don't care what anyone says, this film is hilarious. It has really campy acting and especially bad acting from Johnny Depp. The funniest part of this movie is when the main female antagonist is fighting Freddy. But, not to say this movie has its creepy scenes as well. The creepiest parts being when Freddy is dragging his nails alongside the walls. I am giving this movie a 9/10 for how scary it was back in the day. 9/10 (Awesome) Expand
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9
geo333Jan 17, 2016
One of Wes Craven best work, as it introduces one of the iconic horror characters and establishes. A Nightmare on Elm Street to be one of the best horror movies ever made .
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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9
perkjlJan 4, 2016
The original Nightmare movie is my personal favorite from the franchise. Wes Craven knew his craft and the movie is still pretty frightening even for today. Complete with a chilling musical score, eerie environments, and one of Hollywood'sThe original Nightmare movie is my personal favorite from the franchise. Wes Craven knew his craft and the movie is still pretty frightening even for today. Complete with a chilling musical score, eerie environments, and one of Hollywood's most ruthless & chilling horror villain of all times- Freddy Krueger, before he dropped to a B rated to a D rated comedian. Freddy was ACTUALLY frightening in the original, which is why it will remain my favorite in the series. Plus, Johnny Depp is in it (and a super young one at that!) . Expand
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8
TheQuietGamerDec 6, 2014
They just don't make horror like this anymore. It's wildly creative and imaginative. The concept is taken to the upmost high thanks to the plethora of memorable and unique scenarios. Wes Craven really used the dream world logic to create someThey just don't make horror like this anymore. It's wildly creative and imaginative. The concept is taken to the upmost high thanks to the plethora of memorable and unique scenarios. Wes Craven really used the dream world logic to create some of the most deranged moments in horror history. Even better is the villain behind it all.

Krueger is a genuinely creepy and unnerving creation. The twisted character seems designed from the ground up to creep and gross viewers out. The special effects after all these years have aged surprisingly well, even if the acting and dialog hasn't. Both can seem rather weak and slightly goofy at times.

By far the biggest flaw it has though is that it's just not scary. However despite that it is not hard to see why this movie is so beloved among horror fans. It's genuinely unlike any other horror film out there and is completely deserving of the "classic" status it has attained. Any horror fan needs to check this out. My total score for it is an 8.4/10.
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8
TheNewSpielbergMay 2, 2011
This 1984 horror classic was and still is a milestone in the history of horror cinema and is the best film of Wes Craven's career, in my opinion. The plot concerns a group of teenagers who are having terrifying nightmares about a strange manThis 1984 horror classic was and still is a milestone in the history of horror cinema and is the best film of Wes Craven's career, in my opinion. The plot concerns a group of teenagers who are having terrifying nightmares about a strange man who wears a fedora hat, striped sweater and has a knifed glove on his hand. When they ask their parents, they get no response and instead an alarmed look. The main character is Nancy Thompson, who after the death of her best friend Tina pieces together the puzzle and finds out that the "strange man" in her dreams is a child killer named Freddy Krueger, who was burned alive at the hands of grieving parents who took the law into their own hands after he was set free from prison on a technicality. As all of her friends are slashed to death one by one, Nancy must find a way to stop Krueger once and for all. It may sound like the stuff of schlock, but it tells it to you in a way that makes you believe the idea is credible. All the actors are good, but Freddy steals the show. His evil laughter, famous one-liners and his sick sense of humor have all become the stuff of legend. Another notable mention is that a certain Johnny Depp had his first screen role thanks to this film. As you would expect from a 1980s horror movie made on a low budget, the effects look dodgy today but that cannot be helped. Add into the mix an atmospheric musical score and some great direction and you have a recipe for one of the most intelligent and terrifying horror films of the 1980s. Expand
4 of 4 users found this helpful40
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8
HalfwelshmanDec 13, 2011
I Nightmare on Elm Street is a great horror film. It's clever, original, and most importantly, it's actually scary. It's a highlight of maestro of horror Wes Craven's career, and introduced one of the most terrifying and iconic movie monstersI Nightmare on Elm Street is a great horror film. It's clever, original, and most importantly, it's actually scary. It's a highlight of maestro of horror Wes Craven's career, and introduced one of the most terrifying and iconic movie monsters of all, Freddy Krueger (chillingly portrayed by Robert Englund). It's Craven's ability to derive scares from our natural fear of the unknown that makes the film work on so many levels. We know so little about dreams, and the idea that they can cross over into the real world is a disturbing concept indeed. You can't underestimate the influence of Nightmare on films either, as without it, you probably wouldn't have Craven's self-deprecating Scream franchise, or such intellectual blockbusters addressing similar material as Christopher Nolan's Inception. Despite its numerous scares and philosophical themes standing up even today, some aspects of A Nightmare on Elm Street haven't quite stood the test of time. The sequence where Freddy walks out of the mist with pantomime-prop-quality extended arms and the infamous rubber legs being dragged through the tiny window border on laughable when watched today. That said, these minor gripes do little to ruin your enjoyment of a seminal horror film. It's not just a slasher flick, there's actually some intelligence behind it, which makes a nice change to the dumb modern Hollywood horror. Expand
1 of 1 users found this helpful10
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8
grandpajoe6191Sep 24, 2011
The horror may be to shallow for those who expect more, but "A Nightmare on Elm Street" has everything it needs for a movie; horror, creativity, and brutality.
3 of 5 users found this helpful32
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8
nascentSep 7, 2015
Definitive horror, atmospheric with memorable scenes of horror that inspire many films (such as enemies coming through the walls ala Frighteners). Simple, dark, self encompassing film, with reason.
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8
SavillrGarnerDec 11, 2012
A Nightmare on Elm Street is a cult classic filled with interesting kills and a story that would make one's hair stand on end with great direction by Wes Craven.
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8
marcmyworksJan 11, 2014
Wes Craven proves why he is the master of horror in this 1984 classic. What could be scarier than a killer who attacks in your dreams? Unfortunately this film spawned several terrible sequels.
1 of 1 users found this helpful10
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8
Meth-dudeSep 26, 2017
It's a masterfully done film. While the acting was a bit shaky and it was predictable, the kills and the use of practical effects were interesting enough to keep you entertained. It definitely deserves it's place as a horror classic.
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8
teddylukeApr 9, 2015
a nightmare on elm street is pretty good. even if it's not really that scary I find it to be a great film. the pilot does not make that muck sense but it still a good film.
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8
RobertOBrienAug 7, 2015
The body bag in the hallway, Tina crawling on the walls, Johnny Depp's blood fountain, are not made scary by CGI and loud jumpscares, but rather through the music and atmosphere this film presents. Those are genuinely creepy moments thatThe body bag in the hallway, Tina crawling on the walls, Johnny Depp's blood fountain, are not made scary by CGI and loud jumpscares, but rather through the music and atmosphere this film presents. Those are genuinely creepy moments that still freak me out. Those aspects and presentation are things the remake sorely missed.

Be aware, Freddy is not a wise-cracker in this film. Those are the sequels. don't believe the original is a dark comedy, because it's not. 1984 leans towards pure horror, and is still creepy and effective today. There are jumpscares, but they are done sparingly and appropriately, adding to the scenes instead of ruining them.

While aspects of the movie do not hold up very well (Heather Langenkamp's acting, some of the special effects, the ending) it's the atmosphere, storytelling and creative approach to the slasher genre that pulls this movie through. I would recommend it anyone who likes horror.
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7
imthenoobOct 2, 2013
Very original and a cult classic without a doubt. Freddy is a great horror icon. Do you really need to say anything else about it? Yes it could have been better but even after all these years, It's still enjoyable to watch.
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7
solomsApr 17, 2015
For those who say that it is a bad movie... don't even try to talk to me. One of the best horror movies ever. Freddy is so badass. An amazing job for the year...
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6
mds03Mar 29, 2013
Wes Craven is a great director, don't get me wrong. But this movie was kind of disappointing. Before I watched it I had heard that it was horrifying but it in the end it really wasn't. All in all it was ok though and at moments it was scary.Wes Craven is a great director, don't get me wrong. But this movie was kind of disappointing. Before I watched it I had heard that it was horrifying but it in the end it really wasn't. All in all it was ok though and at moments it was scary. I'll give it that. Expand
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6
Jack_SunshineDec 30, 2013
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The third of the big three slasher franchises came latest, well into the ‘80s, and has ended up being my favourite. Like Halloween it’s suburban, taking place in and around a few houses on the titular Elm Street as teenagers are picked off by a sadistic killer (with a relatively low, early instalment body count).

What sets A Nightmare on Elm Street apart from its rivals is Freddy Krueger, who again became a horror icon. With his trademark hat and clawed glove (long razor blades attached to each finger), he has a striking silhouette, which is played with during the first act of the film until his face is later revealed and a grotesque, burned visage it is.

Writer and director Wes Craven creates an altogether different villain. He does not stalk the woods with a machete, but is wholly supernatural, and inhabits the world of nightmares, playing off a typical childhood fear that things in your nightmares could become real.

This film is largely rooted in these childhood concerns; Freddy’s arrival is heralded by skipping children who sing an ethereal, unsettling rhyme, and another major theme is that of disconnection between children and parents.

Typically, the adults are worse than useless, dismissing the concerns of heroine Nancy Thompson (Heather Langenkamp) as mere dreams, even when her friends start dying in their sleep, and she pulls Freddy’s hat back into the real world with her.

But there’s more to this than meets the eye; hints are dropped throughout that Nancy’s mother knows more than she’s letting on, and it is later revealed that the erstwhile Freddy, a child murderer, was burned alive by the parents of Elm Street. Freddy’s plan is one of pure revenge.

As a character, Freddy is certainly unhinged and despicable, but is prone to more gags and wisecracking. In the dream world, he’s the boss, ands he likes to play around. He is not merely a lumbering stunt man in a mask, but is played by an actual actor, Robert England, who is now an established horror veteran as a result of his work on the series (he has played Freddy in nine Elm Street films between 1984 and 2003).

Unbound by the limitations of physical reality, he scares his victims with acts of self mutilation, which are not just body horror but also sight gags, another element of the series’ more tongue in cheek take on the horror genre.

He toys with his victims, slicing his gut to reveal maggots and green goo at one point, a victim grabs his face, and the flesh simply comes away. Freddy lets this happen, to display his control and the hopelessness of the situation.

All of this provides the opportunity for some great practical special effects to showcase Freddy’s dream manipulation, which may well be lost in a modern production (I’ve yet to see the 2010 remake, so the validity of this remains to be seen).

Freddy stretches his face through the wall above Nancy’s bed, and makes the staircase melt into quicksand. A scene where Freddy’s glove attacks Nancy in the bath (part of a limited scattering of sexual imagery) was achieved by building the bathroom set above a larger tank of water. Other gravity defying effects were shot on upside-down sets.

One of Freddy’s victims is a young Johnny Depp in his very first cinematic role, and his death scene reputedly holds some kind of record for the sheer volume of fake blood used in a single movie (500 gallons, according to IMDB).

If Freddy is a unique villain, Nancy Thompson is a refreshingly different final girl. She does not spend the entire film fleeing in terror, or cowering in cupboards like some of her predecessors, but is altogether more pragmatic and determined. She sets out to defeat Freddy, and constructs a gauntlet of Home Alone-style traps throughout her house before pulling Freddy into reality for the final showdown.

The nightmares themselves are a high point. If Halloween was set in suburbia, and Friday the 13th in the woods, A Nightmare on Elm Street really takes place in the mind. Wes Craven blurs the line between dreams and reality; although the nightmares have a darker atmosphere in terms of lighting and colour palette, the transition is almost unnoticeable until Freddy appears. Dreamlike location switches are also used Nancy leaves a boiler room, and appears on her front lawn.

The ending is strangely ambiguous, although slasher films frequently end with a final confusing shock or sequel hook. With this final scene, it is not clear how much of what we have witnessed was real, and what was just a dream, so while it’s a head scratcher, that’s really the point.
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5
Lopez17Aug 11, 2010
Wes Craven is know all around as the master of horror for decades he has been delivering original and horrifying films that have left a lasting impression on cinema. His first film "The Last House on the Left"(1972) help jump-start theWes Craven is know all around as the master of horror for decades he has been delivering original and horrifying films that have left a lasting impression on cinema. His first film "The Last House on the Left"(1972) help jump-start the slasher genre with John Carpenter's "Halloween" following right behind. Craven use to be known for his originality for his films and his originality and flare for theatrics help shoot him into super-stardom in the early 1980's with his flimsy "masterpiece" "A Nightmare on Elm Street" widely touted as a horror classic. But in reality "A Nightmare on Elm Street" is nothing more than an exploitative , excessively gory, dull horror downer that offers more laughs than chills and takes you on a ride that you thought would be fun but then just turns out to be a boring time at the movies offering up today what filmgoers would call, "Cliché thrills". I had always heard stories about this film; I heard stories of how terrifying it was. How it left viewers with nightmares for dayâ Expand
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5
AtTheMoviesJul 20, 2011
I watched this movie expecting too be scared witless. I was unfortunately not. Sure, the concept is fantastic and original. The villain in the first 3/4 of the movie is quite malevolent, when he isn't using cheesy one-liners. The music buildsI watched this movie expecting too be scared witless. I was unfortunately not. Sure, the concept is fantastic and original. The villain in the first 3/4 of the movie is quite malevolent, when he isn't using cheesy one-liners. The music builds great suspense, and the movie as a whole does build suspense. But, those are the good things. The acting is sub-par, especially on the part of Heather Langenkamp. I am pretty sure that the death scene with Johnny Depp had more blood then what is in 3 humans. I'll admit that from the start until the deaths of the first two characters, I enjoyed the movie. But, then it got bogged down with campiness. The whole fighting Freddy scene with the elaborate traps was a little far-fetched. I mean she shouldn't know how to do any of those things, but then she suddenly does. But, my main problem with the movie is how Freddy is vanquished. "I give you no energy", seriously? That is the campiest and cheesiest thing I have ever heard in a "horror" movie. It is the worst possible way I can think of to have killed him. Overall, it is a horror classic. However, it should not be a classic. It is not that good of a movie, and I unfortunately do not recommend seeing it. Expand
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