We’re getting close to the end. Six films in and the fatigue is beginning to take its toll. I can’t get myself excited about watching this one, but I slide the disc in and kick back with a bottle of Delirium Tremens. The New Line logo does its thing…
Okay, we’re already guilty of hubris. The opening credits haven’t even begun and we’re already quoting Freddy Krueger alongside Nietzshe. And then a massive Wizard Of Oz reference. And finally “Night On Disco Mountain” …er, a Mussorgsky reference. I don’t remember the name of the original piece. So as Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare gets underway, we’re in full borrow mode. Hey, at least we have Lisa Zane and Breckin Meyer and Yaphet Kotto.
Man, I love Yaphet. Especially in the 70’s. Alien, Blue Collar, Live and Let Die… Love him.
Rachel Talalay directs this one. And she gets story credit. So let’s lay the blame on her doorstep shall we? Are we going into this with low expectations? I would say so. Talalay has been producing Nightmares since, well, the beginning. Here’s the pedigree: Assistant Production Manager, Production Manager, Line Producer, Producer… and then she took a movie off, only to return as director for this one. Finally, screenwriter? Michael De Luca. And you know what? So far it’s not terrible. Already, I’m liking the dialogue. Not too on the nose. Not too dumb.
Oh never mind. Now it’s terrible. Rosanne and Tom Arnold make a rather horrific appearance. What the hell is going on here? And now Tom Arnold. Seriously, I’m confused. What is this movie about?
“We’re in Twin Peaks here,” says Breckin Meyer. And my god, I’m beginning to wonder if De Luca was just trying to channel David Lynch. Doesn’t he realize Lynch is in a universe all his own?
Minute twenty six. This is a horror movie, right? A horror movie is supposed to be scary, right? Oh wait, here we go. Carlos is asked for the map. And it turns out the map is way bigger than it’s supposed to be.
Now THAT’S scary.
“Freddy had a kid. Freddy had a KID!” This is plot point one. But then, didn’t we cover that during the last movie? And didn’t that kid belong to Lisa Wilcox? In fact, where is Lisa Wilcox? I miss her.
Okay. Remember how I said way back in the second installment of this series how the most un scary horror scene ever was that one where the budgie went berzerk? I take it back. Compared to the video game nightmare sequence that kicks off at minute 43 of this film, the parakeet from hell sequence is pure terror. In fact, compared to this scene, the birdie rabies sequence in the second film is like the entire Exorcist wrapped up in a single flurry of tiny wings.
“Every town has an Elm St.!” crows Freddy. Seems he wants to start all over again. And now he can do it, thanks to is daughter, Lisa Zane. Oh, whoops. Did I let the cat out of the bag? Yeah, right. Like you were gonna watch this one. Lisa Zane is his real daughter. Makes perfect sense when you think about it. In the last one he had a kid by infecting the dreams of Lisa Wilcox’s baby. On this one, he actually HAS a kid. Right?
“The dream people gave me this job,” says Freddy.
“Huh?” says everyone else.
I’m confused. Maybe what they’re saying is– Oh hell. There’s the cue. It’s time to put on my 3-D glasses.
Now I’m sitting on my floor, face fifteen inches from my television, looking desperately for a hint of depth in the finale. Lisa Zane faces Freddy. They battle back and forth. Some strange slugs show up. I’m so focused on the 3-D stuff that I’m no longer paying attention to the plot.
I do like this one image. Talalay has the camera swirling around the two antagonists as they spit insults and reveal truths about each other. Nice lighting. Nice motion. And that’s about it. I like the image. I wish it were in a better movie.
And then it’s all over. There’s an explosion. Freddy is blasted to smithereens, we’re treated to one last ridiculous 3-D effect and Lisa Zane is told she can take off her glasses. Another ninety minutes gone. Another cluster of teens picked off. And Freddy Kreuger, apparently, is dead. New Line kills off its franchise.
Up next, resurrection? Wes craven returns and breathes a kind of life back into the series ten years after it began.