976-Evil (1988)

After mainstream success as the fritter-faced Fred Krueger, Robert Englund swapped his razor-fingered glove for the camera, making his directorial bow with supernatural horror 976-Evil. Thankfully, Englund’s was a short-lived career.

That’s not to say the movie is terrible. It is adequate. Unspectacular. Banished to mediocrity by cheap sets and bad special effects. But the main problem is the total lack of scares on offer. For all the gore and the violence, this never really feels like a horror movie. There is nobody to care about, nobody to root for, and, most importantly, nobody to fear […]

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Never Sleep Again: Elm Street and the Dawn of Krueger

From the moment Charles Bernstein’s seething synthesizer sinks to the pit of your stomach, you know you’re in for something quite special.

What we see onscreen is different somehow. It is dank and grungy and saturated with a sense of palpable terror. We hear heavy-breathing, more perverse than your standard stalk-and-slash drivel. Instead of following some unseen POV presence, we step into the shoes of a young girl and wander as she does, falling deeper into the bowels of a wretched boiler room as the cackles grow and a teasing shadow haunts the periphery of our imagination […]

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Dream and Dream Again: How The Dream Warriors Revived a Dying Franchise

In hindsight, the third instalment of the ‘Elm Street’ series did as much good as it did bad. First of all, it took a movie of great craft and imagination to salvage a franchise left moribund by 1985’s Freddy’s Revenge, a movie that was as brave in its intentions as it was stupid in its execution […]

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Freddy Krueger’s Top 10 Kills – Part Two

Welcome back, bitches!

We will now conclude our two part series, as VHS Revival ventures into the ethereal netherworld of Fred Krueger, one of horrors most iconic and enduring characters. Back in 1984, Old Pizza Face revitalised the slasher genre as a razor-fingered child killer with the unprecedented advantage of being able to inhabit one’s dreams, offering fans of the macabre a potentially unlimited canvas of death and destruction […]

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Freddy Krueger’s Top 10 Kills – Part One

Hello, bitches!

Welcome to the first of a two part series, as VHS Revival ventures into the ethereal netherworld of Fred Krueger, one of horrors most iconic and enduring characters. Back in 1984, Old Pizza Face revitalised the slasher genre as a razor-fingered child killer with the unprecedented advantage of being able to inhabit one’s dreams, offering fans of the macabre a potentially unlimited canvas of death and destruction […]

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The Death of a Monster: 2010’s A Nightmare on Elm Street

I don’t consider myself a critic; personally I resent the term.

In spite of a movie’s inadequacies there is usually much to admire, or if not at least some potential on offer. For every cinematic faux pas there is an ingenious turn of direction or standout performance. Someone, somewhere, will make the most of a bad situation.

There are some productions, however, that are destined to fail […]

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A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988)

In 1984 horror maestro Wes Craven unleashed one of the most terrifying characters to ever grace the horror lexicon.

Fred Krueger had all the right ingredients to keep you awake at night. A grotesquely deformed, razor-fingered child-killer, he was not the kind of merciful barbarian who would dispose of you with one brutal blow. This monster was gloriously sadistic, the big kid who had taken pulling legs off spiders to a whole new level […]

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A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge (1985)

Wes Craven never wanted a sequel for what would become his most successful franchise.

In his mind Fred Krueger was a one-off nightmare, a character whose end would be swift and memorable. Others could not afford to be so romantic. Before A Nightmare on Elm Street New Line Cinema was a small production company which could not match its expenses, and producer Robert Shaye – who had taken a chance on a screenplay which had been passed around with glib disinterest […]

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