When Warner Brothers sent Mania the complete A Nightmare on Elm Street box set on Blu-ray I knew it was going to be a monumental task. How does one review seven films in such a franchise? Obviously, these films are not for every one. I wanted to look at what effect a Blu-ray transfer would have on these films. In short, would they hold up? I decided to use to IGN’s “Freddy’s Krueger’s Best Kills” (see the article here) has a starting point.
#1 A Nightmare on Elm Street
“You’ll Need a Mop”
Disc 1, Scene 22
The blood scene that rivals The Shining’s still holds up and is indeed a true nightmare. Real world practical effects outshine CGI any day. That fact alone is something that Hollywood and filmmakers have forgotten.
#2 A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors
“Look Ma, No Strings!“
Disc 2, Scene 10
Don’t watch it if you have tendon issues. The effects in 1080p are brilliant, until Phillip (Bradley Gregg) walks through an unopened door way. Freddy cutting his strings also doesn’t shine in 1080p. Great gore here with practical effects and the Freddy marionette is good too.
#3 A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors
“Prime Time Bitch”
Disc 2, Scene 13
A quick death sequence, but one with practical effects and quick cuts well preserved in 1080p. Freddy’s head popping up out the TV looks bad for all of about three seconds. Freddy killing Zsa Zsa Gabor, one for the ages.
#4 A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors
Disc 2 , Scene 23
Mohawk-switchblade girl Taryn (Jennifer Rubin) squares of against Freddy. It’s great to have a character hold their own even for 30 seconds. The effects here are great. The open drug tracks on her arm are creepy and Freddy’s needle fingers still frighten. Proving, again, practical effects win out over CGI in 1080p every time.
#5 A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master
Disc 3, Scene 14
This is the big French Kiss death scene in the class room. The actress, Toy Newkirk who plays Sheila, probably wouldn’t want to watch this scene in 1080p. Not only is there an incredibly bad CGI (circa 1988) robotic hand, but you can clearly see Newkirk did not wax her upper lip that day.
#6 A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master
“You can check in...”
Disc 3, Scene 19 to 21
Ah, the roach motel death sequence. The prosthetics and make-up remind us that green screens and CGI morphing really do pale comparison.
#7 A Nightmare on Elm Street: Dream Child
Disc 3, Scene
Make-up can either work in 1080p or it can fail miserably. Here it is the latter. Erika Anderson’s Greta has tons of make-up on her face to appear stuffed by Freddy’s food. The make-up looks rushed and shoddy. This could be due to two things, budget or a long day of shooting with close ups happening last. Here 1080p is not kind.
#8 Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare
“-7,000 for the Town of Springwood”
Freddy really cleans house in this one. The whole film, however, really is a mess from Tom Arnold to Alice Cooper to Johnny Depp’s cameo. The film itself looks good in 1080p, however Robert Englund’s make-up is too good. Why the sleek Kruger this time around? The fun family Freddy has completely taken over.
#9 Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare
“Carlos, Can you Hear Me?”
Disc 4. Scene 11
This might be one of the longest death sequences in the entire franchise. It may also be the most unique. Freddy tortures Carlos (Ricky Dean Logan) with sound after sticking a long q-tip in his ear. The following sequence is great in DTS-HD. If anything it is a great departure from all the gags and jokes as Freddy tortures someone who can’t hear him.
#10 Wes Craven’s New Nightmare
“There is Nothing There”
Disc 4, Scene 23
The blood runs pretty rampant in this death sequence. What is refreshing here, like the whole movie, is that Wes Craven never over does it. He reins in his creation that so many directors and writers made a mockery of. Practical effects and a gimbal make Freddy scary again and not a buffoon.
Top 5 Picks of the Week:
1. A Nightmare on Elm Street Collection
2. Schindler's List 20th Anniversary Limited Edition (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy + UltraViolet)
3. Wreck-It Ralph (Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD + Digital Copy)
4. The Bay
5. Westworld [Blu-ray]
ACTION / ADVENTURE / KUNG FU/ THRILLERS / WESTERNS
A Dark Truth
Collaborator Starring David Morse and Martin Donovan
The Falcon and the Snowman Starring Timothy Hutton, Sean Penn, Pat Hingle and Joyce Van Patten
The Great Spy Chase [Blu-ray] Starring Lino Ventura, Bernard Blier, Francis Blanche
The Great Spy Chase Starring Lino Ventura, Bernard Blier, Francis Blanche
Interview With a Hitman [Blu-ray] Starring Luke Goss, Stephen Marcus, Elliot Greene
Interview With a Hitman Starring Luke Goss, Stephen Marcus, Elliot Greene
The Marine 3: Homefront (2013)
Marine 3: Homefront [Blu-ray] (2013)
Muay Thai Warrior [Blu-ray] Starring Seigi Ozeki, Sorapong Chatree and Kanokkorn Jaicheun
Muay Thai Warrior Starring Seigi Ozeki, Sorapong Chatree and Kanokkorn Jaicheun
Red Dawn (Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Copy) Starring Chris Hemsworth, Josh Peck, Josh Hutcherson
Red Dawn Starring Chris Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson
True Grit (2010) / Hondo Double Feature [Blu-ray]
True Grit (2010) / Hondo Double Feature
Bodacious Space Pirates 2 [Blu-ray] (2013)
Bodacious Space Pirates 2 (2013)
Rurouni Kenshin: New Kyoto Arc [Blu-ray] (2013)
Rurouni Kenshin: New Kyoto Arc (2013)
Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu Season Two Starring Vincent Tong, Kirby Morrow, Michael Adamthwaite
Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu Season Two [Blu-ray] Starring Vincent Tong, Kirby Morrow, Michael Adamthwaite
Regular Show: Party Pack 3 Starring J.G. Quintel, William Salyers, Sam Marin and Mark Hamill
Wreck-It Ralph (Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD + Digital Copy) Starring John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer
Wreck-It Ralph (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo) Starring John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer
Wreck-It Ralph Starring John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer
Brewster's Millions (2013)
College: Ultimate Edition [Blu-ray] Starring Buster Keaton and Anne Cornwall
College: Ultimate Edition Starring Buster Keaton and Anne Cornwall
Bhoot Returns Starring Alayana Sharma, J.D. Chakravarthi, Nitin Jadhav
Eaters Starring Guglielmo Favilla and Riccardo Floris
Elfie Hopkins: Cannibal Hunter Starring Ray Winstone, Jaime Winstone, Rupert Evans and Kate Magowan
House Hunting Starring Marc Singer, Art LaFleur and Paul McGill
Table No. 21 Starring Tena Desae, Paresh Rawal and Rajeev Khandelwal
The Bay Starring Kristin Connolly, Kether Donohue, Jane Mcneill
MODERN CLASSICS on BLU-RAY
Schindler's List 20th Anniversary Limited Edition (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy + UltraViolet) Starring Liam Neeson, Ben Kingsley, Ralph Fiennes
SCIENCE FICTION / FANTASY
Power Rangers: Clash of the Red Rangers Movie Starring Alex Heartman, Najee De-Tiege, Hector David Jr
Ultramarines: Warhammer [Blu-ray]
Zombie Warz: Falls The Shadow Starring Wendy Keeling, Jesse James Locorriere, Annie Thurman
Murdoch Mysteries: Season 2 [Blu-ray]
Party of Five: The Complete Fourth Season Starring Matthew Fox and Scott Wolf
Peter Gunn - Season One Starring Craig Stevens, Lola Albright, Hope Emerson
Wagon Train: Season 6 - Embossed Collectable Tin Starring John McIntire, Frank McGrath, Terry Wilson and Denny Miller
Nightmare on Elm Street Collection [Blu-ray]