Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre

Before we race ahead with this story, let us pause for a moment and consider the most amusing tale about this movie I can think of:

Tobe Hooper, the writer and director, thought it would be PG-rated. Which is why he left out a lot of the blood, nudity and swear words.

Here’s a tip to all you folks making PG-rated movies. Leave out the hammer blows to the head.

You’re welcome.

Like all classic tales of terror, this movie starts with a really, really, really long word crawl that is also read to us in voice-over, just in case we don’t feel like reading.

It goes:

“The film which you are about to see is an account of the tragedy which befell a group of five youths, in particular Sally Hardesty and her invalid brother, Franklin. It is all the more tragic in that they were young. But, had they lived very, very long lives, they could not have expected nor would they have wished to see as much of the mad and macabre as they were to see that day. For them an idyllic summer afternoon drive became a nightmare.

“The events of that day were to lead to the discovery of one of the most bizarre crimes in the annals of American history. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.”

Keeping in mind that this led to the discovery of this “bizarre crime,” why are there three sequels? Shouldn’t the discovery of the bizarre crime pretty much been the end of the story?

Never mind. We must keep going. We’re barely a minute into this series.

Ah. We’ve got a date: August 18, 1973.

(Oh, and by the by – do four deaths really make for a massacre? More of a minicre.)

And now, a black screen. And the sounds of digging. Or smashing. Could be pretty much anything, really.

Camera flashes. Which illuminate somewhat rotted body parts.

Then it’s day, and we’re looking at a dead body in the day time, while the radio news explains that it’s a grizzly work of art. A decomposing body wired to a large monument.

Apparently, there’s been a lot of grave-robbing. A lot of it.

We watch the corpse sit there for a while and we listen to the radio. Why? Because it’s cheap, folks. This is what low-budget filmmaking is all about.

Up next. Credits! The title of the movie, the people in the movie, the people who made the movie. You’ve gotta pad that running time somehow.

And then? The sun. And a dead armadillo on the highway. And a van driving down the highway.

The van stops, and a dude gets out. He takes two long boards out of the van, and sets them up so that another dude in a wheelchair can get out of the van. This must be Franklin.

Dude who can walk gives Franklin an empty can, and Franklin pees into it.

A semi drives by, Franklin freaks, and his chair goes rolling down a hill with him in it. A girl calls to him from the van.

He hits the bottom of the hill, falls out of his chair, and rolls for a minute.

Later, everyone is back in the van, and they are driving along again. Since it’s the 1970s, no one is wearing seat belts. Even more surprising, no one mentions that Franklin now smells like he’s been covered in his own pee.

The girl who is not Sally tries to explain to everyone a bunch of stuff about the Zodiac, and Saturn, but the gang is pretty much laughing her off.

They stop at a cemetery and the sheriff, who just happens to be there, takes Sally to look at her grandfather’s grave. She wants to see if it’s been dug up.

Franklin stays in the van, watching a drunk guy babble.

Then they’re driving again, and Sally tells Franklin that it doesn’t look like grandpa got dug up to her.

Everyone suddenly goes, “Ew!” and they all try to plug their nose. Something smells bad. Franklin points to a building in the distance. It’s the old slaughterhouse. He goes on to explain that this is where grandpa used to take his cattle. He explains that they hit the cows in the head with sledgehammers to kill them. And also, sometimes they had to hit the cows twice to do the job.

This gets cross-cut with lots of shots of cows.

Franklin concludes by telling everyone that these days they use a special air-gun to kill the cows. He then relaxes by taking out a knife and cleaning his nails. While in a moving vehicle.

Something terrible will happen to Franklin, and it will be his fault.

The crew spots a hitchhiker and decides, after a little talk, to pick him up.

Turns out the hitchhiker is a freaky, freaky dude who used to work at the slaughterhouse. He’s under the impression that the air-gun is a bad thing. He’s a fan of the sledgehammer.

He also took pictures of a few of his cow kills, which he passes around. While doing this, he tells everyone that nothing on the cow is wasted, and explains the concept of head cheese. Which is just icky.

But wait! There’s more! The hitchhiker calmly takes Franklin’s fingernail-cleaning knife from Franklin, touches his finger to the blade, and then cuts his own palm. After which he calmly hand the knife back to Franklin.

Then he stares at his bleeding hand and giggles.

Next he pulls a straight-razor out of his boot and shows it to everyone, explaining that he, too, has a knife.

Everyone is all, “Don’t spook the crazy guy. Don’t do it.”

The hitchhiker puts his knife away, and then pulls a camera from around his neck. He looks for a subject, then snaps a picture of Franklin. Apparently, it’s some kind of instant camera, since the hitchhiker pulls a picture out of the back of the camera.

The hitchhiker tells the gang that they should drop him off at his house, since it’s nearby. He figures they could stay for dinner. He says his brother makes a really great head cheese.

Everyone explains to him as politely as possible that the really, really need to drop him off.

The hitchhiker lets the picture finish processing, and then hands it to Franklin. Franklin says the picture didn’t turn out too good.

The hitchhiker says they can pay him now. Two dollars. Which, with inflation, is roughly the cost of our national deficit today.

Franklin gives the picture back to the hitchhiker at the behest of one of his van-mates.

The hitchhiker sets the picture on top of some tinfoil, puts some kind of burning element on it, and sets fire to it.

Then, the hitchhiker takes his razor out of his boot and cuts Franklin’s arm.

Right about now, everyone starts to panic. I’d say it’s too little, too late.

The driver stops the van, and the hitchhiker is half thrown out, and half jumps out. It’s hard to tell. Not sure if that’s bad direction or it it’s really supposed to be vague.

As the van starts moving again, the hitchhiker kicks the van and sticks his tongue out at Franklin.

Someone in the van says that’s the last hitchhiker he ever picks up. Yeah.

Not-Sally goes back to reading her astrology book. It seems that Sally’s information is, a) ruled by Saturn, which I guess is bad, and b) the thing reads “There are moments that we cannot believe that what is happening is really true. Pinch yourself and you may find out that it is.”

Through all this, Sally patches up Franklin’s cut.

The gang pulls up to a gas station, and the girls hop out. One dude gets up off a stool and washes their windshield, and another guy, who I guess is a pump jockey, comes out. The boys tell him to fill ‘er up, and he says he doesn’t have any gas, and probably won’t have any until “late this afternoon,” maybe not even until the next morning.

Franklin asks the pump jockey where the old Franklin place is.

Pump Jockey says that the guys don’t want to go “messing around” on someone else’s property, and Franklin explains that his dad owns it. The Jockey then says that the boys should stick around for a while, the gas truck should be by soon.


He also says he’s got some “good barbecue.”

The girls try to get a Coke out of the Coke machine.

One not-Franklin turns to the other not-Franklin and says, “Hey, we should ask if there’s another gas station nearby.” The not-Franklin with glasses says he’ll go ask Jockey about that.

Franklin and not-Franklin sit in the van. First Franklin cleans his nails with his knife some more. Then he pokes part of the interior of the van with his knife, which displeases not-Franklin. Then Franklin shows where some of the hitchhiker’s blood is on the knife.

Franklin wonders what the deal is with the guy who cut himself. How did the guy just, you know, cut himself? And also, did Franklin do something to make the guy mad?

The not-Franklin with glasses comes out of the gas station. He bought a tiny little sack of barbecue.

Everyone gets in the van, and Franklin says, roughly, “Hey we’re going to grandpa’s!” He also says that they can go swimming there, if they want to.

The van pulls out. We watch it drive away. Sally uses Franklin’s knife to open her soda. Franklin asks if “that guy” was trying to scare them by “blowing up” his picture.

Not-Franklin says that if they run out of gas, Franklin is towing them back to the gas station.

We get a super-long shot of the van parking next to the old abandoned house. Then we get another nice long shot while everyone gets out of the van.

Everyone notices that the hitchhiker left a mark on the side of the van, I’m guessing in his own blood. Franklin wonders if that guy is going to come back and find them. And also, where did his knife go?

Inside the house, Sally tells everyone that she got to stay there when she was eight, right after her grandmother died.

The house, by the by, is super-decrepit. So the girls and not-Franklins wander around and have a gay old time basically going, “Whoa, this old house sure is old. And beat-up, too!”

Outside, Franklin has a really, really, really hard time getting in, because the house is falling apart, and he’s in a wheelchair. So we get a whole long sequence of him trying to wheel himself in, pretty much in real time. Then he talks to the ceiling, making fun of the girls giggling, and blowing raspberries.

So you feel kind of torn, because you kind of want to feel sorry for him, and you kind of want to punch him in the throat.

This whole sequence takes, I swear, almost four minutes.

Finally, not-Sally and one of the not-Franklins (no glasses) come down and say they want to go swimming, so Franklin tells them there used to be a trail between two old sheds. That I guess are somewhere on the property.

The Happy Couple go bounding off.

Franklin finds something on the ground. I have no idea what it is. It looks like a little pillow that’s been cut open, with bird feathers sticking out of it. At the top of the doorway, there’s a little figure made out of bones.

Franklin calls up to Sally.

So, what? The bad guys just figured, well, let’s put some freaky stuff in this other house we don’t own just in case the people who own it drop by one day. That’ll freak them out, maybe, to no real end?

The Happy Couple scamper down the trail. They find the place where the swimmin’ hole is supposed to be, only it’s dried up. They see another house, though, and the Guy decides they should totally go there and give the people who live there some money for gas. Or maybe his guitar in trade.

The Girl thinks this is a stupid plan. I’m going to side with her.

They walk by a tree with a bunch of junk attached to it. Like a watch with a nail through it.

When they reach an area near the house, they find what looks like a bunch of camouflage netting. They look under it, and there are a bunch of cars hidden there.

They keep walking, towards what sounds like a really loud motor running. The motor has a barrel on it. No idea what’s going on there.

They walk on towards the house. Guy knocks on the door. No one answers. He kicks something on the porch. It’s a tooth.

He shows it to Girl. Girl wants to leave.

But no. Guy decides to open the door, and yell inside the house.

Girl goes to sit on the swing on the lawn.

Guy walks in, calling to see if anyone is home. There’s a doorway in front of him that leads to a hallway. There are maybe two dozen skulls hanging from that wall.

Guy decides to walk in anyway, because he hears what sounds like a pig squealing. And because he is astonishingly stupid.

He walks right up to the door. A guy with a mask over his face steps into the doorway. This is, of course, the famous Leatherface. Leatherface clocks Guy on the head with a hammer. Guy falls down, in some kind of seizure. So Leatherface clocks him on the head again.

Then Leatherface drags him through the doorway, and slides a large metal door shut.

Outside, the girl, who is called Pam, finally starts using the dead guy’s name: Kirk.

Glad they finally gave us a handle for the guy, now that he’s just so much lunch meat.

Now it’s her turn to walk up to the house. Calling Kirk’s name, over and over. She, too, opts to walk into the house uninvited. She sees the large metal door, so she doesn’t go that way. She turns into another room, trips, and ends up on the floor, surrounded by chickens in cages, bones, feathers, and entire couch decorated with human bones, and…

You know what? Just a whole bunch of human bones, in various configurations and piles. Instead of running away, like, right now, and going to her friends, and calling the cops, or anything really, she sits around long enough to get a nice, long look.

She starts making gagging noises, and screaming for Kirk, and then she finally runs.

The metal door opens. Leatherface steps out. She runs. He runs after her. She gets out the front door. He comes out right after her, grabs her, and hauls her bodily into in the house and into another room.

He hangs her on a meathook, while she screams and screams and screams.

Leatherface picks up a chainsaw and fires it up. Pam keeps on screaming. The camera alerts us to the fact that there’s a large metal washtub under Pam.

Kirk is on a nearby table. Leatherface takes the chainsaw and starts carving Kirk up while Pam hangs in the air, screaming.

And now, it’s back to the rest of the gang. Not-Franklin is telling Franklin “He’s gonna get you Franklin. He’s coming to get ya.” In reference to the symbol that’s still on the van, even though Franklin was charged with wiping it off.

Franklin keeps on babbling about the symbol. Sally says to not worry about it. Not-Franklin, who finally gets the name Jerry, keeps on verbally torturing Franklin about the hitchhiker.

Franklin asks Sally about his knife, as he finally remembers that he gave it to her. Sally goes into the van to look for it.

Jerry says he’s going to go look for Pam and Kirk. Franklin tells Jerry to go between the sheds and he’ll find them. I imagine he doesn’t realize he’s basically telling Jerry to step into the light.

Sally wants to go with Jerry, because she’s well aware just how little fun it is to hang out with Franklin, but Jerry figures it would be better if he went by himself. Not that he gives a reason.

So we get to watch Sally look around for the knife for about a second. Of course, she doesn’t check the front seat, which is where she was sitting. Try harder, Sally.

Franklin asks if Sally is mad at him. Sally says no. Franklin says he knows she is.

Jerry heads off, calling to Kirk.

Back at the van, Franklin and Sally talk about Saturn. And the hitchhiker. Again.

Jerry keeps on walking, yelling for Kirk from time to time. But not Pam.

Jerry finds the house o’ death, and goes to the front door. He keeps yelling into the house, asking if anyone is there. He sees an article of clothing hanging over the porch railing.

So what does he do? He goes in the house. Through the door ‘o doom. He hears a rattling in the ice chest. He opens it. There’s Pam. She looks unwell. Half-dead, you might say.

Jerry opens the ice chest. Pam is there. She pops up, all freaky-like. Jerry steps back. Leatherface runs into the room and hits Jerry in the head with a hammer. Then he stuffs Pam back in the ice chest and closes it.

All this activity has caused a mental taxation on Leatherface, so he runs to the back window and looks outside, trying to see just how many people are out there, if he’s going to need to purchase yet another freezer, etc.

He doesn’t see anyone, so he sits down and ponders just where he went wrong in life. Or maybe not. Tough to get into a guy’s head when he’s got a mask on his face.

Night falls. You can tell because of the really long establishing shot of the moon.

Franklin sits in front of the van. Sally has van lights on, and she’s hitting the horn.

She gives up and comes out, and Franklin says they must be lost. Franklin and Sally debate what to do. Franklin thinks they should go back to the gas station and get help.

Sally wants the flashlight, because she wants to go looking for everyone. Franklin doesn’t want to give it to her. He goes to honk the horn, and realizes that one of the missing people has the keys. He starts getting panicky.

Sally tries to take the flashlight from him. They tussle. Franklin says he’ll go with Sally, but he wants to hold onto the flashlight.

She says she can’t push him down the hill.

Sally says she’ll go without the flashlight, and Franklin says he’ll follow along, despite his chair problem.

How do things end up? With Sally trying to push Franklin, while Franklin tries to help wheel himself. They keep yelling names.

Eventually, they spot a light, and hey, there’s the sound of that motor running again. This is like watching cockroaches walking towards a roach motel.

They walk towards the light. In every sense of the word. My apologies for having to use that joke twice now. Franklin says he hears something, and tells Sally to stop.

Leartherface comes out of the shadows, and applies his chainsaw to Franklin’s torso.

Sally screams, and then realizes that screaming is not as effective as running.

Leatherface finishes chopping into Franklin, and then goes after Sally. They run, and run, and run. Leatherface stops, from time to time, to hack up something with his chainsaw.

Eventually Sally reaches Leatherface’s house. She tries the back porch door, which won’t open. Then she goes to the front, and goes in, locking the door behind her. She calls for help. She goes upstairs, to a back room, and finds the withered husks of two very old people. Grandma and Grandpa, I guess.

Leatherface, who I guess forgot his keys, uses his chainsaw to carve up the front door in a really disorganized fashion. In real time, he could probably be inside in maybe ten seconds, but no. He drags it out.

Kind of a drama queen, really.

As Sally heads back towards the stairs, Leatherface finally steps in the front door.

Sally runs back up the stairs, and jumps out the second-story window. She tries to get up, but she’s really slow about it.

Leatherface heads down the stairs.

Sally runs away from the house, screaming.

Leatherface chases after her.

At one point, Sally runs into a branch and falls down. Leatherface catches up to her. Sally regains her feet and runs again. Leatherface just keeps on chasing her.

Now, granted, I can see where they’re trying to keep the tension going, but there’s a slight flaw in their plan. They had five victims, and four of them are dead. So Sally is going to have to survive for a while if this movie is going to push past the hour mark.

Kind of kills the tension, eh? Now it’s just people running. They may as well toss the theme from “Chariot’s of Fire” onto the soundtrack for however long they’re going to drag this out, because they are, quite frankly, out of victims.

Eventually, Sally makes it to the gas station, even though Leatherface has been within arm’s length for the last 30 seconds or so.

She tries a couple of doors, and finally bursts into the gas station, where the Pump Jockey closes the door behind her, and then helps her to a sitting position.

He’s all, “Whoa!” and she’s all, “He killed…” and a lot of breathing.

Jockey says there’s no one outside now, and asks her what happened. She asks him to call the police, and he says there’s no phone, and that they’ll have to drive to the next town. He goes to get the truck. He leaves the door open.

Oddly, she doesn’t scream out, “TAKE A GUN,” or any other useful advice.

She sits. And sits. And sits. And looks at the cooking barbecue. On the radio, it’s all grave-robbing, all the time.

Finally, the truck pulls up. Jockey steps out of the truck, and produces a sack.

She’s all, “Wha?” and he’s all, “Don’t worry,” and she picks up a knife. He says, “Nobody’s gonna hurt ya,” but clearly he wants to put her in a sack, which is never good.

He drops the sack, and picks up a broom. He knocks the knife out of her hand, and then starts whacking her with the broom, over and over and over again.

Ah. “The Texas Broom Massacre.” Seeing as how they still have 20 minutes to go, I guess I wouldn’t be surprised if the rest of the movie wasn’t his slow attempt to kill her using the business end of an old whisk broom.

I can see the posters now: “They swept their grisly murders under the rug.”

The broom handle breaks. He knocks her to the floor and knocks her out with the broken handle. He ties her hands with some rope, and sticks a rag in her mouth.

Next, he stuffs the upper half of her body into the sack, and slides her into the cab of his truck.

Sooo… why go through all that? Why not just have her get into the truck and drive to the location where the evil happens? By the time she thinks to run, it’ll be too late.

As he gets ready to drive away, he stops to turn off the lights at the gas station. He tells Sally that the cost of electricity it enough to drive a man out of business.

Jockey drives while Sally whimpers. From time to time he pokes her with the broom handle.

Finally, after about six years of driving and whacking and crazy talk, Jockey spots something. It’s the hitchhiker. He’s walking along with a sack and a dead possum.

Jockey gets out of the truck and starts whaling on the hitchhiker with the broom stick. He also yells at him, telling him that he needs to stay out of the graveyard. Hitchhiker says that no one saw him.

Jockey gets back in the truck and drives to the house. Hitchhiker jumps on the back so he doesn’t have to walk.

They get to the house, and Jockey and Hitchhiker pull Sally out of the van, and sort of carry her into the house.

Jockey is mad about what Leatherface did to the front door. So he goes and hits Leatherface, who is now dressed in women’s clothing, a bunch of times.

Hitchhiker, meanwhile, drops Sally in a chair and ties her down.

Jockey stops hitting Leatherface long enough to ask if any of the kids got away. Since they didn’t, Jockey stops hitting him. Then he remembers that Leatherface messed up the door, and goes on another whaling spree.

Jockey tells Hitchhiker to go upstairs and get Grandpa. Then he tells Sally to, “Take it easy,” and that they’ll fix her some supper in a few minutes.

Sally is, of course, freaking out. A lot. And screaming. As best she can through the dirty rag still tied in her mouth.

Hitchhiker and Leatherface bring Grandpa, who still looks pretty danged corpse-like, down the stairs and into the dining room.

Just so y’all know who up in here, we’ve got: Sally, tied to the chair. And Leatherface, and the Hitchhiker, and Grandpa, and Jockey, who keeps walking in and out of the room. I guess he’s making dinner.

Sally’s arm is untied, and Leatherface holds out her hand, cuts her finger, and gives the bleeding digit to Grandpa, who sucks on it like it’s a baby bottle.

Time passes. Shot of the house. Shot of the moon.

Back in the house. Sally is unconscious. She wakes up. There’s a plate of food in front of her. She screams.

So do all the other residents of the house.

Jockey tells them all to shut up. They do. Except Sally. She starts pleading for her life. She seems to think that Jockey can keep Hitchhiker and Leatherface from killing her.

Hitchhiker taunts Jockey, and says he’s “just a cook.” Jockey cops to it, and says he doesn’t enjoy killing. He can, he just doesn’t enjoy it.

So Sally alternates for a while between screaming and pleading, and Jockey and Hitchhiker alternate between just kind of sitting and taunting her. Also, freaky sounds play on the soundtrack.

Also-also, there are close-up shots of Sally’s eyes.

Jockey finally gets sick of all the screaming and says that Hitchhiker and Leatherface need to just kill her and get it over with.

Hitchhiker decides to “let Grandpa have some fun.” So they stick a hammer in his hand and try to guide his withered limbs through the process of killing Sally with a blow to the head.

Apparently, in his heyday, Grandpa was “The Best” at killing with a hammer.

In order to accomplish this killing, they have to untie Sally from the chair and have her kneel on the floor with her head over a large washtub.

And did I mention that Grandpa drops the hammer quite a few times before he finally hits Sally?

Through it all, Grandpa manages to land one blow. And Sally manages to get free of the Hitchhiker’s grasp. So she runs down the hall and jumps out yet another window.

She lands on the driveway, and stumbles away from the house.

Eventually, the Hitchhiker gives chase. Then Leatherface. Still dressed in his dinner-eating suit. Carrying a chainsaw.

Sally keeps on running, with the Hitchhiker just behind her. He finally grabs her when she reaches the road.

But wait. There’s a semi coming!

Sally gets out of the way. The hitchhiker does not, and he gets run down. A lot.

The driver, a large black man with an afro who has the words “Black Maria” written on his truck, pulls over and hops out.

Sally runs towards him. Leatherface is right behind. The driver rightfully figures out that being somewhere else, right now, is a GOOD IDEA.

He gets back into his truck, and helps a screaming, bloody Sally into the truck’s cab.

He slams the door. Leatherface tries to cut through the door, but the saw just can’t do it.

Sally and the driver hop out the door on the other side, and run away. The driver pauses to grab a large wrench.

You know, I’m torn. I want to taunt the guy for not just driving away, as fast as possible, but I recognize the trouble of trying to get an 18-wheeler up to speed. So I’m going to let it go.

Sally and the driver run. Leatherface chases them. The driver turns around and hits Leatherface in the face with the wrench. Leatherface falls. His saw cuts into his leg.

Leatherface gets up. The driver and Sally keep on running. Leatherface chases them.

A truck with an open bed drives by. The driver spins the truck out. Sally hops in the back. The driver keeps right on running.

The driver tries to start the truck, which has stalled. It won’t start. It won’t start… it WILL start!

The truck driver peels out, as Leatherface tries to follow on foot.

Sally sits in the bed of the truck, screaming and flipping out and kind of laughing.

Leatherface does a ballet-ish chainsaw dance.

No idea what happens to the truck driver. The next town is a long, long, long way away.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Freddy Vs. Jason

Here’s a puzzler for you – this movie takes place after “Wes Craven’s New Nightmare.” Which should mean that it’s a sequel to that movie.

The only problem is, it doesn’t really have anything to do with that movie at all. Not the tiniest little bit. There’s no ancient evil, no storyteller. Nothing.

So do we pretend that this movie follows part VI? I mean, I guess we could. Or rather, I guess we have no choice.

As far as the Jason story goes, timeline-wise, this was made AFTER Jason X, but Jason X takes place in “the future” and this movie doesn’t, so I guess we don’t have to worry about that. This one just happens after Jason is killed (again) and his hockey mask is dragged under the earth by Freddy claws.

Which sounds like a cool idea, until you go, “Oh, so Jason died in Springfield, Ohio in that movie? No, wait, Freddy died in some other town. So maybe Jason made it there?”

And who was dreaming of Freddy, in order for that to happen? And if Freddy can suddenly enter the real world again… but wait, he was already brought into the real world and killed there, so WHOSE HAND IS THAT?

Sometimes, doing something that seems “cool” at the time trumps logic.

So here we go:

Here’s the film logo, with a little “Nightmare on Elm Street” music and a bit of kee-kee-kee ma-ma-ma.

And then we’re in the boiler room. A little girl is trying to sneak off somewhere, while Freddy sharpens his claws and gives us a whole lot of voice-over.

“My children. From the very beginning, it was the children who gave me my power. The Springwood Slasher. That’s what they called me.”

The unburned Freddy looks at the little girl, and holds up his claws. But we don’t get to see any actual cutting.

Freddy then takes a picture of the girl and sticks it into a scrapbook. He continues: “My reign of terror was legendary. Dozens of children would fall by my blades. Then the parents of Springwood came for me. Taking justice into their own hands. When I was alive, I might have been a little naughty. But after they killed me, I become something much, much worse. The stuff nightmares are made of.”

While this is all going on, we get shots of people throwing Molotov cocktails into Freddy’s boiler room building, and things going up in flames.

And then shots of Freddy’s “Super Evil Eyes.” They’ve upgraded his makeup a bit.

“The children still feared me, and their fear gave me the power to invade their dreams. And that’s when the fun really began! Until they figured out a way to forget about me. To erase me completely.”

While all this is going on, we get to watch a bunch of Freddy’s greatest hits. I’m going to do you a favor and skip some of the monologue, and pick it up here:

“I can’t come back if nobody remembers me! I can’t come back if nobody’s afraid! I had to search the bowels of hell. But I found someone, someone who’ll make ‘em remember. He may get the blood, but I’ll get the glory. And that fear is my ticket home.”

As Freddy wraps up three solid minutes of telling us his evil scheme, we get a shot of Jason’s hockey mask. We move in on the eye hole, where we can see a teenage girl.

And now we move to a dock, where the girl hears a noise and calls to some dude named Mike. Strangely, she’s not sure if it’s him or not. She removes her shirt in an effort to taunt him. Or enamor him. Or possibly to wake up all the teenage dudes wondering when Freddy is gonna shut up and let the movie roll.

She tells Mike she’s going in the water. Then she strips down and dives in. She hears another noise, and decides that, “It’s not funny any more.” She goes back on the dock, and puts on her shirt.

Without getting dressed the rest of the way, she looks around, until she spots Jason in the woods and figures it would be prudent to run away. Since she’s wearing an almost-buttoned shirt, the censors let this one go. After all, it’s like 42% less exploitative if the naked woman is almost wearing a shirt.

The girl runs, screams, trips, falls. Stands around looking for Jason. Backs up into something. It’s a tree. She walks around the tree, and turns around. There’s Jason, who jams his machete through her AND the tree.

Jason hears a voice. His mother.

The girl, who is mostly dead, but partially alive, says, “I should’ve been watching them, not drinking, not meeting a boy at the lake.” The girl becomes a boy, and the boy becomes another girl. They’re all fairly penitent.

Jason’s mom appears behind him, and she’s got something to say, too: “Jason. My special, special boy. Do you know what your gift is? No matter what they do to you, you cannot die. You can never die. You’ve just been sleeping, honey. But now the time has come to wake up. Mommy has something she wants you to do. I need you to go to Elm Street. The children have been very bad on Elm Street. Rise up, Jason. Your work isn’t finished!”

While mom is babbling, in some place or another, we get to watch Jason’s heart beating.

“Hear my voice and live again!”

Wherever Jason is, he opens his eyes, crawls out of his grave, and starts walking. Maybe to Elm Street. Maybe to a 7-11 to get a slurpee.

“Make them remember me Jason, make them remember what fear tastes like. I’ve been away from my children for far too long.”

On that last line, “mom” morphs into Freddy.

So, that would mean that for six of the last six-and-a-half minutes, Freddy’s been running his mouth. Hoo boy. That’s gonna get tiresome.

Another conundrum. Assuming Jason was buried anywhere remotely related to Crystal lake, he’s either in New Jersey or Connecticut, depending on which Jason movie you’re referencing.

I sincerely hope the next shot is of Jason hailing a taxi. Or standing in line at the airport. That dude’s got a long, long, long walk ahead of him if he’s headed to Ohio.

They throw the title of the movie at us, and we’re onto the next scene.

Which takes place at the Nancy house. Which… has a red door.

It seems that Wes Craven is the only man in the world who believes in the blue door. But you know what? Forget it. This movie already has no real reason to exist, beyond profit. Freddy is dead both in the movie world, and in the real world. And in the real world in the movie world.

Remember how I said we might as well forget “New Nightmare?” While you’re at it, you should probably forget “Freddy’s Dead,” seeing as how Freddy left Springwood in that movie. And was killed. And also got his power from dream demons.

Inside the house are three girls, who are playing a game that pretty much has no bearing on the plot, so forget about it.

The three girls are Kia, Lori, and Gibb. Kia is black, Lori is blonde, and Gibb is smoking and drinking. She opens a window, and tosses her cigarette into the night, where it bounces off Jason’s mask.

I wonder if Jason is tired after his walk?

Gibb gets ready to head out and buy more beer. She opens the door and, “Surprise!” It’s Gibb’s boyfriend, Trey. He brought beer. He also brought a dude named Blake.

Lori isn’t happy about this, but Kia points out that Lori needs a man. Apparently her boyfriend Will moved away, and never calls, or writes, or emails.

Lori looks over at Blake, who is taking a hit off his drink and scratching his man-bits.

Later, Blake compliments Lori on the feng shui of the house. Kia says Blake should check out Lori’s bedroom. Kia might be the worst friend ever.

Blake suggests to Gibb that he has a kink in his neck that needs massaging. Gibb says she needs more drinks before any massaging will happen, and Lori asks what Gibb sees in him. Apparently? Nothing.

Blake reminds Gibb that angering him is a bad idea, the two of them head upstairs.

Lori asks Blake to get them some beers, and then tells Kia that Blake sucks. Also there some exposition about how Lori’s mom is dead, and how her dad “needs” her.

In the kitchen, Blake gets some beers, and then sees that the back door is wide open. A gust of wind shuts it.

Jason-cam heads upstairs and gets ready to do some stabbin’. Gibb and Trey are having a grand time. Which is over about six seconds later. Gibb tries to cuddle, but Trey hates that kind of thing. So she goes to take a shower instead.

Trey grabs a beer, and Jason steps out of the shadows and stabs him a lot. Then he folds the bed, in order to demonstrate that he’s, like, totally still got it.

Gibb gets out of the shower, and steps in a puddle of blood. She touches it, decides not to consider trying to escape out a window, and steps into the next room, where she sees Trey, being all dead-like.

She starts screaming.

Moments later, everyone is out of the house, screaming and yelling and calling for help.

Luckily, a cop car arrives at that moment.

The cops overrun the house, and a young cop and an old cop walk through the house and out the door, while the young one goes, “It’s gotta be Freddy! It’s even the same house!” And the old one says, “Don’t say that name. We’ve got to keep it together!”

All the kids are taken down to the station and questioned.

Old Cop and Young Cop determine that the kids don’t know “anything,” and another cop, Stubbs brings Lori some coffee and says her dad will be there soon and that they don’t have a suspect.

Lori overheard Freddy’s name being said, but can’t think of it. She rests her head on the table and closes her eyes, and then comes up with it.

She opens her eyes, and looks up, and the cop shop is devoid of people. She walks through the empty building, following drops of blood that vanish as they hit the floor. She passes by a punch of signs that say, “MISSING” and have shots of kids on them.

She finds a young girl lying on the floor, and touches her on the shoulder. The girl turns to her. Her eyes have been clawed out. She tells Lori: “His name is Freddy Krueger, and he loves children, especially little girls. Freddy’s coming back. Soon he’ll be strong enough. It’s OK to be afraid. We were all afraid. Warn your friends. Warn everyone.”

Lori steps back and runs into the wall. The wall becomes the door to the Nancy house. Out on the lawn are a bunch of gravestones. Nearby, little girls do the Freddy chant incorrectly.

Grab your crucifix is replaced with “a,” and gonna stay up late is replaced with “try to.”

Freddy suddenly jumps out and basically yells boo.

Lori wakes up in the cop shop.

Over at Blake’s house, his dad gets up in his grill about how he was supposed to be watching his sister. He retorts that his best friend was just killed. Blake tells the air that he knows some guy named Freddy did this, and Blake is going to take Freddy out himself.

Something moves in the bushes, and Blake goes to investigate. He hears something move, and turns, and there’s a goat. And Freddy is down the street. A shadow Freddy springs out from Freddy-Freddy and tries to slash Blake, but nothing happens.

Blake leaves, as Freddy says, “Not strong enough yet. Well, I will be soon enough. Until then, I’ll let Jason have some fun.”

Man, do I miss the days when Freddy didn’t talk. I miss them so, so much.

Blake wakes up. His dad is sitting next to him. Blake touches his dad on the shoulder, and his head falls off. Blake stands up. Jason carves him up. Trey will not be avenged this night.

At the local mental hospital, a patient asks what his Hypnocil does. Well, well. Continuity. Didn’t see that coming.

Turns out they all have to take it.

The next dude comes up, and sees on the news that someone was killed in Lori’s house. This is, it turns out, the famous Will who Lori is deeply in love with, even though he never calls or writes.

The dude who asks about Hypnocil is Will’s friend, Mark. They discuss some stuff about nightmares, and how Will seems to think that Lori’s dad killed her mom. Which is how he ended up in an institution.


Mark realize that Will really cares about Lori, so he decides to act all crazy so the guard-dude will inject him with sleepy-time drugs. So that Mark can steal the dude’s keys for Will.


Will breaks out. Or rather, I guess he just unlocks the door and walks out, but never mind. He takes his very doped friend with him.

The next day, Lori’s dad gives her drugged orange juice. Or rather, he tries to, and says she should stay home, but she says she wants to see her friends.

So she heads off to school, without her drugged juice. Probably important note: When she falls asleep for a half-second, her dad develops Freddy-face.

At school, the girls convene and everyone learns that Blake and Trey are both dead. It seems people are thinking Blake went crazy. Kia insists that this is “messed up.” She should have insisted on “acting lessons.”

Inside the school, the kid named Linderman tells Lori he’s sorry about what happened, and offers to listen if she wants to talk. Kia tells him to put his hormones back in a box and let this go. This is, of course, the same Kia who insisted Lori should totally nail Blake the night before.

Two dudes in the hall pass out invites to a big party.

Lori chooses now to tell her friends all about Freddy and her bad dreams. Interesting choice, there, Lori.

As she explains, another dude appears in the hallway and sings the Freddy chant. Oh. It’s Mark. It seems he knows all about Freddy. He gives her, and the audience, all the exposition they missed at the beginning when they fell asleep during Freddy’s monologue.

Will appears at the other end of the hall, and tells Mark to stop scaring Lori. Lori is so surprised to see Will that she passes out. Will and Mark run.

Lori naps in the nurse’s office. Kia wants to know why Lori isn’t awake yet.

Kia and Gibb sit in the waiting room. Kia is reading a magazine about plastic surgery. Suddenly, Freddy sticks his claws out of the magazine, says, “Got your nose!” and yanks Kia’s CGI nose off.

Kia wakes up, unharmed.

Mark and Will, still in the hallways of the school, keep on wandering around.

A couple of cops spot them, and they run… to the library.

They check old newspaper records, and discover every mention of Freddy has been wiped out, including Mark’s brother’s suicide.

There’s more discussion, and a location move, so that the boys can explain to the audience yet again that anyone who remembers Freddy is moved to the mental hospital, because if no one fears Freddy then Freddy can’t return.

Which completely abandons all the ideas found in the movies from “Dream Warriors” on, which tout the idea any Elm Street kid being attacked by Freddy must have some sort of connection to a previous Freddy victim.

Remember? Kristy was the last of the Elm Street Kids, and she brought Alice into the fray, and then Alice’s baby started dragging other people in.

Mark tries to convince Will that they should leave before things get bad. Will says he must talk to Lori.

Mark tells Will he gets one night, and gives Will his really easy-to-spot van.

Out in some corn field: Rave! All the kids are there. Including Linderman. A bunch of dudes try to pour beer down his throat. Ah, teenage hijinks.

Linderman finds Lori and offers to get her a drink, and Kia arrives and is mean to Linderman again.

Off in the middle of somewhere-or-other, Jason picks up a rusty metal pipe.

Linderman verbally slaps back at Kia, but it’s sort of lame.

Elsewhere in the party, Freddy is now a topic of conversation. Which makes Gibb mad, so she throws beer on someone.

Will shows up, and reveals to Lori that he’s been writing to her while he was at Westin Hills, the mental hospital. And that he came to find her because he heard about the kid that was killed at her house.

Will wants to know where Lori’s dad was when the killing happened – she tells him he was out of town. She mentions Freddy, and then suddenly Kia shows up and decides they all need to do some dancing, at this random time when it would really be a much better idea to figure things out.

Also, Kia is now being “nice” to Linderman, so the plot doesn’t come to a screeching halt.

I’m searching for even a single reason to like Kia, and I’ve got nothing. Anyone want to jump in here?

Gibb goes wandering drunkenly through the corn field – and there’s Trey. Who is mighty dead, but still bossy as anything. Gibb follows him. She arrives at a silo, and walks on in. Not an awesome plan.

Inside, it looks boiler-room-y. She sees the shadow of Freddy. She tries to leave, but there’s no door.

Out in the real world, she’s passed out on the ground, and a raver is looking at her and thinking raver thoughts.

In the dream, Gibb wanders around the boiler room. And on a scaffolding. She trips and falls down to the first floor.

Outside the dream, raver-boy is kissing up on her. Bleah…

In the dream, Gibb gets up off the floor and hides in a locker. Cutting off all exit options. Genius.

Freddy pulls off the door and goes to strike, and blood suddenly flies out of Gibb and onto Freddy.

In the real world, Jason has just stuck his machete through both raver-boy and Gibb. Which means she died while being drunkenly molested the day after her boyfriend died. You know something? That’s just depressing. European art-film makers would consider filming something like that, and cut it because it was just too sad.

This is followed by Jason tossing raver-boy off his machete so he flies way, way, way off into the cornfield.

In the dream, Freddy is displeased that he lost his victim.

Back at the party, two dudes smoke pot. They turn around, and see Jason. They taunt him. Jason turns one dude’s head around on his neck. The other guy throws booze on Jason and sets fire to him.

Jason doesn’t care. He pulls out his machete and gives stalk.

He leaves a trail of fire in the corn as he walks.

Soon-to-be-dead dude runs back to the party. Nice work. Jason throws his machete and impales the guy. Then he goes into the party area and starts cutting people down. Everyone runs.

Lori and pals find Gibb on the way to running.

Moments later, they’re all in the van driving away. Everyone wants to know if that dude was Freddy, and Lori is all, “No, that’s someone else.”

Kia says they should call the police. Linderman just says he wants to go home.

So they drop off Kia at home. Uh… what?

Also, there’s some pot-smoking dude in the van. No idea who that guy is.

Hey people. Your best friend was just stabbed to death. CALL THE COPS.

After everyone else is dropped off, Will and Lori sit in the van and talk. Will tells Lori that he saw Lori’s dad kill her mom. Lori is all, “No,” but Will is all, “Yes!” and then Lori’s dad taps the window.

Lori and Will get out of the van, and there’s verbal and physical scuffling as Will claims that dad had him committed, and dad claims that Will is endangering Lori.

Finally, Lori stomps into the house, and dad follows. Lori wants a copy of mom’s death certificate or autopsy report. Dad says “this isn’t the time.”

Turns out dad does some consulting at Westin Hills.

Dad tells Lori to take some pills and get some sleep. Lori runs up to her room and locks the door. She escapes out a window. Dad breaks in, but Lori is already gone.

Lori walks away as a reasonable pace, and runs into Will. They get back in the van and go to find Mark.

Mark is sitting in his house, looking through drawers at an old photo of his brother. Suddenly he hears a voice call to him. He opens a door, and across the hall is another door with a light under it. And also mist.

Mark opens the door into the world’s largest bathroom. I swear, it’s the size of the entire second floor of my house.

He realizes that he needs to stay awake, so he opens the medicine cabinet and takes out something called Wake Aid. There’s only one pill. He’s about to take it, but first he closes the medicine cabinet, and there’s Freddy’s face.

He drops the pill. He turns around, and the previously empty bathtub now contains bloody water and Mark’s dead brother, who accuses Mark and everyone else of forgetting him.

Then Mark’s brother develops Freddy voice, so that Freddy can once again explain the plot to everyone. I’d type it all out again, but it’s just so painfully redundant. Essentially he says that he brought Jason back to kill some people so that Freddy would be remembered, only now Jason won’t stop killing people.

Of course, there is something like six billion people in the world. Why can’t Freddy share?

Blood pours across the floor, and little tendrils sprout and stick themselves into Mark’s feet. Then snakes start writhing around on the floor as well. Mark cries out that he wants someone to wake him up.

Outside, in the real world, Lori and Mark speed up to the curb and jump out of the van. Why all the urgency? They were driving at totally normal speeds a couple of minutes ago. What gives? It’s not like they knew Mark was under attack.

They run around the house, trying to find Mark. He’s asleep on his desk.

In the dream world, Freddy tells Mark to pass on a message. Mark says no. Freddy says he’ll have to pass on the message himself then. He throws Mark across the room and sets Mark on fire.

In the real world, Mark starts on fire. Will and Lori freak out. Mark begs for help. Then slashes appear on his face. He falls down. On his back, the words “Freddy’s Back” are burned into Mark’s back.

You get the joke, right? Or perhaps you need Freddy to explain it, via monologue?

At the cop shop, the old cop looks through photos of the rave where everyone got all chopped up and such.

Stubbs comes in and says he knows who did the killing. He’s determined it’s a copycat of Jason. Interesting theory.

Old cop explains that it’s not, that they know who the killer is, and they solved the problem four years ago and they’ll solve it again.

I have no idea what that dude is talking about. None at all.

Walk through this with me.

“Freddy’s Dead” was released in 1991, with the statement that the event in the movie take place “ten years in the future.” That would be 2001, right?

“Freddy Vs. Jason” takes place in 2003.

I guess you could stretch things and say that 2000 is “kinda” ten years in the future and 2003 is “kinda” four years after 2000. With a lot of rounding. And math performed by toddlers.

But wait! There are more problems! All the teens from the van, including the stoner dude, are now back together in some location or another, talking about what they should do. They consider leaving, but they figure Freddy will follow them.

Except established cannon states that he can’t follow them. He can only travel using the mind of his daughter, who I guess is still alive and well somewhere. Of course, by that logic, Freddy shouldn’t be in Springwood any more. Perhaps when he was killed, he was sent back?

Stubbs arrives, and the kids figure they’re in trouble. But no. Stubbs is cool like that.

Stubbs also fills all the kids in on Jason’s backstory, since the screenwriters couldn’t figure out a way to get Freddy to do it. They abbreviate a bit, with Jason drowning at 11, and then saying someone “made the mistake” of killing his mother.

At any rate, Linderman says Jason is the real deal, and not a copycat.

And Lori, who is falling asleep in the corner, says that Freddy died by fire, Jason by water. “How can we use that?” she asks.

While we’re at it, Will once again explains that Freddy must have brought Jason back, but now Freddy can’t control Jason.

Thanks, dude. I didn’t get that the first fourteen times.

Everyone ignores Lori, who is clearly babbling just to hear herself talk. They decide they need to sacrifice a virgin to Freddy, and figure that Lori should be the one sacrificed.

I know the fire/water thing was stupid, but this seems extreme.

Lori’s dad appears, and goes to kiss Lori. Naturally, dad is actually Freddy. Lori fights back, and yanks off his ear.

In the real world, Lori’s friends wake her up, and she looks down at her hand and sees that she’s still holding Freddy’s ear.

She drops it, and the ear dissolves into maggots.

They realize they aren’t safe awake or asleep, and Lori says, “No, no, it’s our dreams.”

(Lori is sort of right and sort of wrong. If a killer is out there with a machete, he can pretty much attack you whether you’re awake or asleep. The ability to invade your dreams isn’t necessary.)

They figure out it’s the Hypnocil that’s been keeping the bad dreams at bay, and they look it up online. It still hasn’t been approved by the FDA. Really? It’s been about 20 years. You would think they would have gotten on that.

They decide to go back to Westin Hills, instead of calling Lori’s dad, who offered her pills less than three hours ago.

Or calling the rest of the cops in, since they would surely be happy to provide the meds as well.

Whatever. They go to Westin hills.

Linderman, Stubbs, and stoner-boy (I’d kill for a name on this guy… also, I want to know when he became friends with the rest of the group) go into the computer room, which is like something out of a 1960s sci-fi film. Stubbs leaves, and Linderman follows, but stoner-boy decides to stop for a j-break.

I’m not even joking.

A security guard goes to check out a door that’s being pounded on. The movie cuts away, and when it cuts back, the guard has been crushed by the door. Sorry about that, day-player-dude.

Will and Lori and Kia go to the D wing, where they find a bunch of people who wouldn’t stop dreaming. They’re all in comas from taking too much Hypnocil.

Lori’s dad’s name is at the bottom of their charts.

Stoner-boy continues to get baked. A freaky CGI caterpillar comes in with a bong, and blows smoke on stoner-boy. So stoner-boy follows the caterpillar. He goes into the next room, and sees all the victims sitting up and asking about Hypnocil.

They tell him where it is, and tell him to pour it down the drain. He says, “nay!” and looks up. The caterpillar falls off the ceiling and shoots down his throat.

By the by, he finally appears to have a name. Freeburg. Which is clearly a “Free Bird” pot-smoking kind of joke. So I’m going to keep calling him stoner-boy, since he’ll be dead soon anyway.

Stubbs and Linderman go to the “computer” room, and from there they can see stoner-boy dumping pills down the drain. They go to stop him, but there’s Jason, who chops into the computers and starts getting electrocuted.

Stubbs tells Linderman to run, but Jason grabs Stubbs and shares the electrocution love. Linderman picks up Stubbs’s gun. He runs.

Will, Kima, and Lori head up to the drug room, where they discover that all the Hypnocil is gone.

Stoner-boy fills up two syringes with a whole lot of tranquilizer.

Jason breaks down the door on Will, Kima, and Lori, and they run away. Past stoner-boy, who doesn’t move, because of course Freddy is in him.

Jason walks up to stoner-boy, who injects Jason. Jason cuts stoner-boy in half. Then falls on the ground, dead asleep.

And now, it’s the dream world, and Jason is in the boiler room, being berated by his mother, who once again explains that Jason didn’t know when to stop killing. In case you missed that.

Then “mom” turns into “Freddy.” Freddy taunts Jason. Jason cuts off Freddy’s arms, which then grow back. Because it’s the dream world. There’s a lot of fighting, while the audience yells out, “Finally! Jason on Freddy action! Only took the movie an hour and five minutes to get there!”

Freddy beats up Jason, but Jason refuses to die. A pipe breaks, and Jason shies away from the water pouring out of it. Freddy realizes that Jason is afraid of water.

(Wow. This plot point really sucks. More than usual. Jason has survived trapped underwater for months. He lives near a lake. Making him afraid of water is super-lame.)

In the real world, all the remaining kids have tied up Jason. They’re driving him to Crystal Lake. It’s nighttime, so they should get there, like, noon the next day or so.

In the dream world, Jason drops his machete, then falls on the floor. He’s a little boy now, still wearing a hockey mask, which makes no sense, since he didn’t have it as a boy. Freddy takes it off of him, then shows him his own mother’s severed head.

(Know what’s lame? The woman who played Jason’s mom in the first “Friday the 13th” is still alive, and she isn’t in this movie. I’m guessing they didn’t offer her enough money. What a waste.)

Freddy sticks a claw into Jason’s head to learn what he’s really scared of.

So now we’re in the dream version of Crystal Lake, and Jason is hauling a dead body through a watery marsh-type thing. There are corpses. Let’s just zip on past that.

In the van, they decide to knock Lori out, so she can pull Freddy into the real world. Never mind that pretty much anyone can do it. They’re going to send Lori. What a great plan.

They knock Lori out, with the instructions to wake her up in exactly 15 minutes. Because you can always time grabbing a dream killer down to the second.

Lori goes to sleep, and arrives in Crystal Lake. It’s daytime. A bunch of kids are chasing after kid Jason and taunting him with the words, “Freak Show!” There’s more taunting. They stick a bag over his head and push him towards the water.

Lori runs over to the counselors and asks if they’re going to help “The kid.” But they’re busy, having some adult time. Also, the male counselor is actually Freddy, and the female is dead. Well. That’s icky.

In the real world, Linderman injects Jason with more dope.

In the dream world, Jason falls into Crystal Lake, and Lori tries to pull him out of the water. Freddy pops up, and tries to drown kiddo Jason.

In the real world, water starts pouring out of Jason. He’s drowning. So Kia has to give him mouth-to-mouth. Because Will is driving and Linderman has asthma.

Or rather, she’s about to give it to him, but Jason wakes up. Linderman fires the gun he took from Stubbs. Will freaks and hits a something, and the van flies in the air.

Jason goes flying into the woods. He’s awake, so…

In the dream world, kid Jason vanishes, un-drowned. Freddy looks up at Lori and says, “You!” Lori’s watch goes off. She jumps on Freddy and pins him to the dock, yelling to be woken up.

She vanishes, and un-vanishes in front of the Nancy house.

In the real world, the boys try to wake up Lori. They’re right by Crystal Lake, and not dead after that really quite elaborate crash. Convenient.

They carry Lori into the camp.

In the dream, Lori sees Freddy killing her mom. Freddy killed mom? Whoa. What a surprise. Freddy says he always had a thing for the whores who live in this house. Sure. Makes sense.

No, no. Wait just a second here. How did Freddy kill mom? Doesn’t he only attack teenagers? Except for Nancy’s mom? For some reason?

At any rate, Freddy stabs Lori’s mom. I’m puzzled by something, here. Will saw dad kill mom. So I suppose Freddy took over dad, in order to kill mom? Or Will dreamed the whole thing?

Lori runs away, only she gets tripped, smacks into the wall, and falls over. Freddy kneels over and starts scratching her with his claws.

In the real world, Jason breaks into the cabin they’re all hiding in and knocks over a gas can, which ignites. Will gets sliced, but somehow they all manage to lives a minute or two. Though Kia gets knocked into a wall.

In the dream world, Freddy is still kneeling over Lori, saying things like, “I should warn you princess, the first time tends to get a little messy.” While pulling up her nightgown.

I feel deeply uncomfortable.

Linderman stabs Jason with a flag pole. Jason slaps Linderman into a wall, where he’s impaled on a shelf bracket. He goes down.

Will drags Lori out of the shack, only her hand hits some fire.

In the dreams, she grabs Freddy as she wakes up.

Freddy is just about to kill her, but then he realizes this isn’t the dream world any more.

The cabin is on fire and Jason is there.

Throw-down time.

Jason smashes Freddy through some windows, then takes him out the door and throws him on the roof of another building.

Will and Lori run off.

Kia and Linderman also get out, and Linderman tells Kia to go get help. He’ll be fine. Just a scratch. So Kia leaves, and Linderman dies alone.

Well. That was bleak. The nerd dies by himself.

Kia runs to the water, where she sees Lori and Will. Freddy also catches up to Lori and Will, and gets ready to do some damage.

He’s remarkably mobile for a dude who just got thrown through a building.

Kia screams, and Freddy decides to go after Kia instead of Will and Lori.

Kia accuses Freddy of running around in a Christmas sweater, and not being scary. And using the claws to compensate for something.

Freddy points behind Kia. Jason throws her into a tree. She dies.

Will tries to get Lori to leave via boat. Lori insists she isn’t leaving until she sees Freddy die, since he killed her mother.

Yeah. Never mind that there’s also a dude with a machete and no qualms with killing pretty much everyone also on the beach right now.

Jason and Freddy throw down some more. First there’s punching. Then there’s assaulting with construction materials.

Then they both end up on a dock, with Jason cutting Freddy up a lot.

The thing of it is? I’m not sure how Freddy is living through all this. The dude is human, out here in the real world. Most of his body should be mush right now.

No matter. They fight on the dock. Freddy cuts off Jason’s fingers and takes his machete, and starts attacking Jason with it.

Lori and Will find a gas pump and cover the dock with gas. The director sure is attached to Lori and the whole water/fire thing, huh? You can admit you totally forgot about that. It’s okay.

Freddy keeps slashing at Jason, even though he stated at the start of the film that he knows Jason can never actually die. He shoves his claws into Jason’s eyes. Then his guts.

Lori runs out with two pieces of wood that are on fire. She yells to Freddy, and throws the fire on the dock, and the nearby tanks which exist only for the purpose of exploding.

Freddy, distracted, allows Jason to jam a hand inside him, then rip his claw-arm off. Freddy jams Jason’s machete into Jason.

The explode-y tanks go boom. Will and Lori jump into the water to avoid being incinerated.

Freddy and Jason are thrown off the dock and into the water.

Lori and Will climb up on the dock.

They embrace. Then hear a noise and look up. Freddy is on the dock, walking towards them with Jason’s machete in hand. He’s about to start whacking ‘em, when Jason pops out of the water and impales Freddy with his own claw-hand-arm.

Jason falls back into the water.

Freddy falls to his knees.

Lori gets up and chops off Freddy’s head with Jason’s machete.

Freddy’s head and body fall into the water.

Lori gets a from-the-feet-to-the-face heroic woman shot. She watches Jason sink into the water, face-up. She drops his machete and it sinks after him.

Will comes up behind her. They help each other limp off down the beach. Everything is pretty much on fire. That’ll please the developers.

The next morning. Mist on Crystal Lake. Jason pops out of the water. Also bad for developers.

He’s got his machete in one hand, and Freddy’s head in the other. Freddy’s head turns to the camera and winks.

Looks like the only thing that can kill Freddy is a remake.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Wes Craven’s New Nightmare

Ah, meta. It’s so full of meta-ness, with the… you know what? Let me start over.

So, Freddy was dead as of the last movie. It was, in fact, right there in the title. Which is all well and good, but the “final” chapter of any horror series is usually called that in hopes of getting people amped up for the super-special “return!” movie that comes right after.

In this case, however, it was kind of special, as the original writer and director, Wes Craven, came back to write and direct.

Then things take a weird turn, because of all the meta.

In this case, the gag is that Freddy, who is dead, is now trying to come off the silver screen and into the real world. So you’re watching a movie that is “no, seriously!” supposed to take place in the real world.

As a premise, it’s clever. In execution… well, let’s take a look, shall we?

We start off with a big, fat, callback-only-bigger moment, as a dude in a red and green sweater builds a mechanical hand, then attaches knives to it. Then chops his own hand off.

Then the scene changes a bit, so we can see that we’re on a movie set, being directed by Wes Craven, as a stand-in-Freddy shoves the mechanical hand onto his “stump.”

Nearby, Nancy is sitting around in her pajamas. Only she’s actually Heather, the actress who played Nancy. Because the film is meta. Are you following along?

Wes praises the guys who built the mechanical hand and executed the chop, and Heather’s husband offers to take their son, Dylan, who looks like he’s about six, on a tour to find scary movie props.

Heather, husband, and Dylan walk off the set, and now it’s possible to see all the cast and crew milling around, doing cast and crew-type things. Husband scares Dylan with the old reptile-hidden-in-the-popcorn box trick.

And the two guys who were operating the new Freddy hand get all crabby because the hand stopped working. They think it’s because of the fake blood. Husband gives them some fixin’ advice.

Husband goes to look at the hand, and Heather says she doesn’t like it. Husband says it puts food on their table, and goes to look closer. The hand claws him. One of the tech guys points out that the hand is “warm,” just like a real hand.

Then the hand jumps up and shoves itself into the throat of one of the tech guys. Things everywhere go haywire, with fire effects going off on the set. Husband smashes the radio control for the mechanical hand, but it’s too late. The thing has run off.

It attacks the other tech guy, and stabs him a lot.

Dylan calmly wanders away, and goes to sit on a bed. Two set guys, who for some reason don’t notice the screaming and thrashing going on nearby, walk by carrying a piece of set, and after they pass Dylan is gone.

The claw goes to attack husband. There’s a whole lot of screaming.

Heather wakes up. Yes, the whole thing was a dream about a movie set.

Husband is there, telling Heather to get up. It’s an earthquake, and it’s shaking the house.

They hear Dylan yelling downstairs, and they go to his room, jump on his bed, and hover over him, in an attempt to keep him safe.

The earthquake ends. Dylan sees that his dad has a cut on his hand. Heather wants to know where it came from. He says it came from a picture “or something” when it fell, and that it’s no big deal.

Later, the three of them semi-watch the news, which tells the audience that they had an “aftershock” of 5.3 on the Richter scale. Heather sees that Dylan has made a “face” in his oatmeal, though she doesn’t suss out that it looks like Freddy’s face.

Heather says she has to go, but that Julie will be staying with Dylan.

Heather talks to husband, whose name turns out to be Chase. Chase really does work in special effects. Heather uses this time to give us exposition explaining that there have been five earthquakes, plus she was getting harassing phone calls up until two weeks ago.

Chase asks if she’s still having nightmares, and Heather tells him an abbreviated version of all the things we just watched five minutes ago. Chase says that she was probably half-asleep, and saw Chase cut his fingers on the mirror, which she then “added” to her dream. In some way.

Chase says that if it will make her happy, he’ll skip his next job: Two days making soap bubbles for a detergent commercial. She sort of says, “No, okay, go” and then they kiss, and for a second there it looks like Dylan is going to get a sibling.

But no, the kiss ends and Chase heads off for 48 hours. In his words.

As Chase leaves, a series of cracks appear in the walls. Do they look like claw marks? Indeed they do.

Heather runs downstairs, and finds Dylan watching the original “Nightmare.” It’s the bit with Tina in the body bag, calling to Nancy. Heather says she doesn’t want Dylan watching that.

She unplugs the TV, and Dylan starts screaming. He stops when the phone rings.

Heather picks it up, and a voice says, “One, two.” Heather hangs up. The phone rings, she picks it up again, and the voice says, “Freddy’s coming for you.”

Heather hangs up the phone, runs to the front door, and tries to catch Chase before he leaves. But he’s already driving away in his truck.

Dylan says someone is coming, and there’s another aftershock.

There’s a knock at the door. It’s Julie, the nanny/babysitter-person. I know! How exciting is that?

Then the phone rings again, and Heather answers in a not-nice way, and of course it’s the limo guy. So Heather hangs up, goes to the door, and yells out to him that she’ll be there in just a minute.

Uh – he was on the phone. Why not just tell him then? I guess you could argue that she wanted to verify there was a guy actually there, but for all she knows her stalker is driving the limo.

Didn’t think of that, did you Heather?

Heather says she has a bad feeling, and her son tells her to stay home. But who listens to kids? Not desperate-for-work movie not-stars, I’ll tell you that.

Dylan walks off, and Julie and Heather talk about Heather’s “nerves,” and the phone calls, and the earthquakes, and then the phone rings again. Julie tells her not to answer it, but doesn’t offer to get the phone herself.

Heather picks up the phone. It’s the limo guy again, telling Heather they’re going to be late.

Dylan comes back. Heather says, “Dylan, I gotta go. Forgive me?” Dylan says bye, and gives Heather a hug.

Heather heads out, apologizing to Julie for her so-called nerves.

Heather goes to the limo. The driver lets her in, and they take off. Turns out he’s a fan, who recognizes Heather. Strangely, he doesn’t use the actual name of the movies. Or mention Freddy by name. Though he does say the first one is the best.

And of course, there’s the ever-popular meta-moment, when he calls her a star and she says she’s “hardly a star.” Tee-hee.

Heather gets there, almost late, and a PA races her into the studio, where a terrible, terrible, interviewer peppers her with questions about whether or not she’d let her son watch horror movies, and, “Is there going to be another sequel, and what’s more, is Freddy really dead?”

I realize this scene kinda-sorta has to happen in the movie, but honestly now, is there a reason she’s being interviewed? There doesn’t seem to be one. Why would some random interviewer just call her up and be all, “Hey, want to talk about those movies you haven’t been in for several years?”

Then things get strange. The interviewer asks if Heather would let her “co-star” baby-sit Dylan. Sadly, he doesn’t mean Johnny Depp. Though how awesome would that be?

Of course, the guy means Robert Englund, who then comes out onstage in full Freddy makeup while a bunch of people in the audience applaud and get super-excited over the whole thing. Strange, really, that everyone is dressed up for this “surprise” visitor. Maybe that’s the point.

Backstage after the show, Robert, no longer in full makeup, signs some autographs and has a lovely conversation with Heather where they joke about making a romantic comedy together. Possibly with a decapitation in it.

As Heather gets ready to go pretty much nowhere, unless there’s another limo that we can’t see, a PA hands her a phone and says it’s for her. It’s someone named Sara, from New Line Cinema. They have a “proposal” for Heather, but they have to tell her about it in person.

So the limo takes her over to New Line.

Heather goes to see Sara, who immediately hands her off to Bob. Bob is the producer of the Freddy movies. No, really. You can tell because he’s a really awful actor, even though he’s playing himself.

Bob tells Heather that Wes Craven (the writer and director of the movie we’re watching RIGHT NOW) called and said he had an idea to bring Freddy back, and that Heather is the star of the movie.

Heather says she’s flattered, but that she has a kid now. She’s not sure about doing horror. Bob says that kids love horror. It seems that if “Bob” has kids, Bob doesn’t like them very much.

Heather suddenly realizes something. She asks how long Wes has been working on the script. Bob says a couple months. Heather says, essentially, “Say, has anything strange been happening the last couple of months? Like strange phone calls?”

At which point, the phone starts to ring. Bob refuses to answer it, stating that they pay people to do that. Then he wonders why no one is picking up the phone. Maybe because you and Heather are the only people in your office, Bob. Just a thought.

Heather takes the limo home. As she steps out of the limo, she hears Dylan yelling from inside the house.

Dylan is lying on his bed, screaming. Julie is standing over him. Heather lifts up Dylan and he says, “Never sleep again.” In a freaky Donald Duck-type voice. Heather holds him, he wakes up, and Heather asks if he’s all right.

He says yes, “Rex saved me.” Rex is Dylan’s stuffed Tyrannosaurus Rex, which has a bunch of claw marks on it. It’s as if… well… you know, right? Meta!

Dylan asks if Rex is going to die, despite the fact that Rex is a stuffed animal. Heather promises that Rex won’t die. Something tells me that duct tape is going to get involved in this story.

Heather asks Julie to get the sewing kit. Julie and Dylan head off to do “surgery.” This is going to be bad.

Heather calls Chase, and says Dylan had an episode, and that he was “talking like Freddy.” She asks why Chase didn’t tell her he was working on a new Freddy glove, which is sitting in the foreground of the shot. And she tells Chase to come home.

Chase says okay and heads home. The camera, having moved around a bit, reveals that the glove has gone missing.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that Chase’s friends, who were murdered in Heather’s dream? They didn’t show up for work today.

Later than night, Heather reads the story of Hansel and Gretel to Dylan. As a bedtime story. Which, as we all know, is exactly the kind of thing you want to read to a child who’s losing it.

Heather also seems to think this is a problem, as she stops reading and asks why Dylan wants to hear it, and warns him that it’s going to give him nightmares. Dylan, all smiles, says, “I like this story.”

Honestly, this kid freaks me out.

Heather gets to the part where Gretel pushes the witch into the fire, and then says she’s going to stop reading. So Dylan finishes the passage from memory, then demands that Heather finish the story by telling how the kids got home.

Heather claims that they got home by following bread crumbs, and that their father was so happy to see them he gave them a bunch of kisses. Which doesn’t make any sense, because if I remember the story right, the reason they got lost was that birds ate their crumbs. And that their stepmother was the reason they had to go into the woods in the first place.

Sooo… we’re missing a few details there, Wes.

Anyhow, Heather sees that Dylan has something under the covers, making a big lump. Turns out it’s Rex, who keeps “him” away from Dylan. Who?

“The mean old man with the claws.”

Rex, by the way, was sewn up with some really thick red thread. Or yarn. Or something. There’s going to be scarring, assuming the wound is not already horribly infected and Rex doesn’t die from blood poisoning.

Heather says, “There’s nothing down there,” and they slide to the end of the bed, revealing the floor. Dylan says, “It’s different when you’re gone.”

Heather tucks him in, revealing Dylan’s dinosaur lamp and dinosaur sheets. Dylan asks if dad is coming home. Heather says yes, and Dylan says that dad can follow the bread crumbs. If the birds don’t eat them first.


Out on the highway somewhere, Chase is driving home. He’s falling asleep, and swerves into the wrong lane for a second. So he opens the window. He tries to turn up the music, but his station fades out.

He searches for a new station, but no luck. So he starts singing “Losing My Religion” to himself.

Freddy 2.0 claws push up out of the car seat, and a single claw pokes Chase softly in the groin. Which is just strange. Chase scratches himself, and the claws vanish, with no trace of damage to the car seat.

Chase falls asleep again, the new Freddy hand shoots out of the seat, and stabs Chase in the chest.

Chase’s truck careens towards a wall.

Heather wakes up. She fell asleep on the couch. Dylan is in the living room, asking if mommy is scared. Heather says, “Mommy’s fine,” and that it was just a bad dream.

Heather tells Dylan to go back to sleep, and he says he’s not sleepy.

The doorbell rings, and Heather goes to answer it. The police are there. They ask if Chase is her husband. There was “an accident.” Chase is dead.

Dylan wanders off in the middle of this conversation.

Heather says she wants to see Chase’s body, even thought he cops don’t recommend it.

She heads to the morgue, and wanders the hallways with the dead bodies sitting on gurneys. Somewhere, a woman is freaking out and screaming.

As she walks past a room, she hears someone operating something noisy and mechanical. It sounds like a saw.

She goes into that room, and asks for Chase. One of the men on duty takes her to him. The dude lifts the sheet, and she sees his face. And also the scratches on his chest. She throws up on the floor.

She asks what made those scratches. She says it looks like he was clawed. The dude says that’s why they usually don’t show anything past the face. Heather leaves without signing her paperwork.

There’s a funeral. Everyone is there, including Robert Englund, and the “Nightmare” producers. Odd. Must be one of them dream sequences.

There’s an earthquake, and the coffin opens up. Heather looks around, and Dylan is gone. She looks in the casket, and Freddy is in the bottom of it, along with Dylan. He pulls Dylan down.

Heather goes into the coffin and reaches through the “hole” at the foot of the casket. She reaches down, and grabs Dylan, and pulls him back up, while “Freddy” vanishes down the silk-covered hole.

Heather pokes her head into the hole, and pulls Dylan out. Then the corpse of Chase wakes up, and asks Heather to stay with him.

At which point, the dude who played Nancy’s dad in the original “Nightmare” wakes Heather up and points to Dylan, who is just fine. He’s sitting next to Julie. It seems that Heather passed out.

The priest wraps up the ceremony by hoping that Chase rests in peace, and that they all get home safely.

Robert stops Heather and says he’ll do anything he can to help. Heather says thanks, then walks off just as Wes Craven walks up.

Later that night, Heather wakes up from sleeping, and sees her son is watching TV downstairs. He’s watching the original “Nightmare…” on an unplugged TV. It’s Nancy’s first encounter with Freddy.

Heather waves a hand in front of Dylan’s face, but he doesn’t see it. He starts sleepwalking instead. Heather follows him, and he wakes up, screaming.

She tells him he needs to go back to bed, and he says he can’t sleep. Then he starts doing the Freddy chant. Heather asks where Dylan heard the song, and he says he heard it under the covers. “Way down there, with The Man. The Mean Man.”

The Man is always trying to drag you down, eh Dylan?

Dylan says that the mean man is trying to get into “our world.” Then his nose starts bleeding.

Heather takes him into the bathroom and cleans him up, while the camera shows us that the TV is off and like, totally unplugged.

Later, in bed, Dylan asks where daddy is, and Heather says daddy is in Heaven with God. Dylan asks why God lets there be bad things, and Heather says she doesn’t know.

Dylan then asks if Heather can come with him in his dreams. Heather says that only happens in movies (ha-ha!) but that she’ll be here when he gets back, and she won’t let anyone get his toes.

Dylan goes to sleep. Heather lies in bed with him and drinks coffee.

The next day, Dylan and Heather go to the park, and she talks to “John,” the dude who played her dad in the first “Nightmare.” She’s worried she’s crazy, and he tells her that she isn’t. She’s just had six weeks of stalker-calls, and that’s making her see Freddy in her dreams.

While those two yammer on, not at all concerned for the safety of the children around them, Dylan climbs to the very tippy-top of a metal rocket. He’s like thirty or forty feet in the air, and reaching for the sky. He falls.

Heather and John see him and run for him at the last minute, and Heather catches him. She asks if he’s all right, and he says, “God wouldn’t take me.”

John says, “It’s unbelievable.” No idea what that’s in reference to. That Dylan didn’t kill himself? That God didn’t take Dylan?

The next day, Heather checks her mail. She has a mysterious letter, which, inside the envelope, has a mysterious… um… letter. It’s a letter E, seared onto a piece of newsprint. She throws it in a drawer with a bunch of other letters that she didn’t turn over to the cops.

Heather calls Robert. They chat about her stalker. And about Heather’s Freddy dreams. Heather says that this Freddy isn’t Robert. He’s darker, and more evil. Robert guesses this before Nancy says anything about it.

Heather asks if Wes has talked to him about the script. Robert says Wes won’t show it to anyone until it’s done. Robert says he asked Wes about it, and Wes said he had reached the part where “Dylan is trying to reach God.”

Freaky, eh? Eh?

Heather’s freaked, anyway.

She tells Robert that they need to talk, but not over the phone. She asks if she can go to Robert’s house. Robert, who has been painting this entire time, says there’s something he has to finish.

We get to see his painting, which looks like the screaming souls from the “Nightmare” movies.

He agrees to meet Heather early the next morning, and they hang up. At Robert’s place, the camera pans up and there’s someone standing over the souls – Super Evil Freddy.

That night, Heather tries to sleep while her lamps tip back and forth, back and forth.

Downstairs, Dylan paces in the kitchen.

The house groans.

Then it all stops, and Nancy sleeps. The camera pans to the foot of the bed. Freddy claws pop up, and slide up towards Nancy. The new Freddy arm comes out of the bed. Nancy stirs in her sleep.

Downstairs, a bunch of cutlery falls to the floor. Heather wakes up, and sees the slashed sheets.

Downstairs, she hears Dylan doing the Freddy chant. Heather goes down to see him. She walks towards him. His hand is behind his back. There are knives taped to it, in a rather Freddy-like fashion.

Dylan slashes at Heather. She stumbles and tries to avoid being hit.

Then she wakes up. It’s morning. Or daylight. It’s a little unclear.

She hears Dylan chanting “Never Sleep Again” downstairs. He keeps saying it, over and over. Heather walks to him, and sees the letter from before on the floor. They spell out, “Answer The Phone.”

The phone rings. Heather picks it up. The mouthpiece sprouts a tongue and licks her, and says, “I touched him.” Dylan foams at the mouth.

Then he falls down screaming.

Heather takes Dylan to a doctor. He’s going to stay at the hospital overnight, and they’re going to run a bunch of tests. As Heather gets ready to leave, the doctor asks if there’s anything else they should know. Anything Dylan said while he was still lucid. Any kind of trigger event.

Heather just goes right ahead and lies, and says no. I mean, why mention Rex, the torn-up dino? Or “Never sleep again?” Or the foaming at the mouth, or anything really. I mean, who would do that? Not good parents, or anything like that, right?

Surely not.

Heather goes to talk to a semi-catatonic Dylan, and the doctor tells another doctor that the early symptoms point to childhood schizophrenia.

Heather does a whole monologue about how Dylan needs to get better, and fight whatever is after him. In a series where I’ve frequently complained there’s no real drama, and family dynamics are often for poo, it’s a decent shot at making a family connection, if Dylan wasn’t staring ahead blankly and Heather was a slightly better actress and Wes was a slightly better writer.

Instead, it mostly serves as a way to let everyone know that Heather’s house is right across the freeway. Which I’m sure is going to be important. Points for trying Wes, though. I mean that. I think you’re an awesomely talented fellow when it comes to creeping people out, but your dialogue has always been pretty weak.

A nurse comes in and gives Dylan a pill to help him sleep. He takes it.

Dylan prepares to take a nap, and Heather heads out. Only Dylan didn’t actually swallow the pill. He takes it out of his mouth, and then closes his eyes as though he was going to sleep. I’m perplexed. He decided not to take the pill and then went to sleep anyway? Or maybe he’s faking sleep? How can you tell?

Nancy gets in her car and starts to drive away. She almost hits someone, and he yells at her to wake up. She admonishes herself not to lose it now.

Nancy drinks coffee, drives, and uses her car phone to call Robert. His answering machine says he’s out of town and will be gone for some time.

So much for that meeting, I guess.

Heather goes to see Wes instead. She asks where the script is going, and Wes says he’s just having the nightmare(s) and then putting them into the script as they come to him.

She asks for some kind of explanation, and he says:

“It’s about this entity. Whatever you want to call it. It’s old. It’s very old. It’s existed in different forms in different times. About the only thing that stays the same is what it lives for. The murder of innocents.”

Heather asks if the thing in the nightmare has any weaknesses. Wes says it can be captured sometimes. By storytellers, who “catch its essence.” Then it’s a prisoner in the story.

But when the story dies, because it gets watered down, or people forget about it, the evil is set free again.

Then the genie is out of the bottle and the evil is set free.

Heather wants to know what form the evil is going to take, and Wes says that the evil has decided that it likes being Freddy, and that it plans to cross over into our world. But first he has to get past a gatekeeper.

The gatekeeper? Heather.

Heather does the whole, “That was Nancy, not me.” And Wes does the whole, “You gave Nancy her strength.” And Heather does the whole, “You knew this was going on,” and Wes is all, “I didn’t know.” And Heather is all, “But then you did, you big jerk-face.”

Wes thinks the only way to stop “Freddy” is to make another movie. Heather is going to have to make a choice – whether or not she’s willing to play Nancy one last time.

CUT TO: Wes’s computer screen, with the dialogue: “Whether or not you’re willing to play Nancy one last time.”

I’m going to grant Wes something here:

We’re an hour in, we’re just getting what we’re really up against here, and he alllmost makes it plausible.

There’s just one problem – assuming all this storytelling hokum is true, they don’t just have to make one movie. They have to keep making them, pretty much forever. And they’ve got to keep Freddy scary in every single one of them.

But never mind. We’re too far into the series to talk about logic any more.

At any rate, the script also says, “Fad to Black,” which the screen does, and then it comes back up on a bunch of legal pads covered in notes, and books like “Chilton on Childhood Diseases.”

Just how long has Heather been working on all these notes, exactly?

Heather reads a passage, or we’re getting voiceover, I’m not sure, that says, essentially, that kids who appear to be suffering from schizophrenia are actually suffering from (duh-duh-duuuh) sleep deprivation. I know! Who saw that coming?

But wait – Heather wasn’t actually around for the schizophrenia conversation. The doctor was talking to another doctor. So what are we watching here, exactly? Just a happy coincidence?

We get some more voiceover, cut together with earlier scenes from the movie as Heather totally starts to put together the fact that her kid keeps talking about Freddy, and also Wes is writing about Freddy, and Robert Englund is having dreams about Freddy.

I really don’t know who this sequence is for. Did someone from the movie studio call up Wes and say, “Well, we think there are some people who just might not get it. People with that memory problem, where they can’t create new memories? That’s our target audience. We want to make sure those people can figure out what’s going on.”

Heather snaps out of flashback mode as the TV comes on by itself. She takes a remote and turns it off, and it turns itself back on again, just in time for Heather to see someone on the news announce the death of her husband’s special effects partners.

By “brutal slashing.”

There’s another earthquake. Heather gets up and runs to the doorway. The earthquake stops. Heather discovers that her coffee pot has been destroyed.

She hears a creaking, and looks up at the closet. Her clothes are there. Suddenly, Freddy pushes through them. He says, “Miss me?”

They sort of tussle, with Heather trying to keep away from his claw hand. Finally, he pushes her down and pins her to the bed. He calls her Nancy.

An aftershock starts, and Heather pushes him off of her, and he falls away, reaching out and scratching her arm with his new, updated claws.

The aftershock ends, Heather rolls off the bed and looks around, and then says, “Ow.” Because her arm is slashed.

Heather realizes that she needs to make sure Dylan is okay. So she goes to the hospital. Julie is there, because she had a bad dream and she’s also worried about Dylan. But they won’t let her in, because she’s not family.

Heather and Julie talk for a minute, and Dylan’s doctor, who I guess works 24 hours a day, says that he’s in an oxygen tent, but that he’s otherwise fine. She sees that Heather has some bad cuts, and guides Heather away to talk to her.

The doctor patches up Heather. Which is kind of remarkable, if you think about it. Didn’t ask for a Co-Pay, or an insurance card, or anything. Just stuck some gauze on her.

The doctor asks when Heather got the cuts, and Heather says she got them 15 minutes ago in the earthquake. The doctor says the wounds seem too fresh for that. It seems that the hospital didn’t experience an earthquake. The doctor also asks about Dylan, as a nurse overheard that he was afraid of “a man.”

Heather remembers that she was supposed to bring Rex to Dylan, and she lets slip that he’s afraid of Freddy.

The doctor accuses Heather of letting Dylan watch her movies, and Heather retorts that EVERY kid knows who Freddy is.

Heather leaves.

She goes to sit next to Dylan’s bed, and sure enough, there he is in an oxygen tent. Heather tries to shake off sleep, and manages to do it long enough for two nurses to come in and fiddle with his settings. One nurse asks the other how Dylan is doing, and the other one basically goes, “Eh.”

The nurses leave, and Heather continues to struggle to remain not-asleep.

She fails, then hears Dylan’s beep-beep-beep machine go beeeeeeeeeep and wakes up. Dylan is also awake. He opens the oxygen tent and tells Heather, in an increasingly deep voice, that he’s “almost there.”

So he either being taken over by Freddy, or puberty. Not much of a twist either way, y’know?

Then he spews black bile on Heather and goes into a seizure-type thing. So I’m going to guess we’re looking at puberty.

A truckload of nurses and the doctor come in, and the doctor says to give the kid anesthesia. A nurse says they don’t have any, and the doctor says she’s going in anyway. She raises her hand into frame, and of course it’s been modified with various surgical instruments to look like the Freddy glove.

Then the doctor “becomes” Freddy.

Nancy leaps from her chair onto the bed, and wakes up. The bed is empty. A few nurses and the doctor come in, and there’s hysterical babbling and “no, your son is fine, we took him for tests while you were asleep,” and then the doctor says Heather should go home, everything is fine.

Heather insists everything is NOT fine. Not sure if she’s talking about her kid or her career.

Heather limps down the hall, and they announce a “code yellow.” It looks like things are going to get exciting, but no. The doctor just catches up to her and asks some other staff member what’s up with Dylan.

The staff member says that Dylan is suffering from intense sleep deprivation, and stage-whispers to the doctor that she thinks Heather never lets the kid get a good night’s sleep. Sure. It’s Hollywood. They’re up all night doing coke.

Heather demands to see Dylan, and it almost gets tense, but Julie pops out of a door and says that someone wants to see Heather. That someone is Dylan, who wants to know if they can go get Rex now, because the bad man is getting closer.

Heather says that they can go get Rex right now. The doctor pops her head in and “insists” that Dylan stay in the hospital until they figure out what’s causing his episodes.

I have to concur, considering the fact that Rex has been just as useful as a crucifix when it comes to keeping Freddy away.

Also, somewhere along the line, Heather picked up the grey streak she had in the original “Nightmare.”

Heather sets Dylan back down on a bed and says she’s going to get Rex right now. Dylan asks her to hurry, because he’s sleepy.

Heather tells Julie not to let Dylan out of her sight, and keep him awake. Julie tells Heather that her hair is turning grey.

Heather walks out into the hallway, and three security men drag her into a room. The doctor prepares to lay into her.

Back with Dylan, Julie looks on as two nurses give Dylan a shot to knock him out. Julie punches one nurse out, and threatens the other one with a hypodermic full of who-knows what.

The other nurse runs away.

Back in the other room, the doctor asks Heather if there has been any recreational drug use in her family. Uh, duh? This is Hollywood, right? That’s like asking if someone who grew up in the 60s tried dope.

The doctor goes on to ask about mental disturbance in the family. Heather tries to storm out, but the security dude stops her.

Julie keeps on trying to keep Dylan awake.

Doc asks if Heather has been seeing Freddy. She starts talking about “treatments” and putting Dylan in foster care for a while.

Dylan closes his eyes, opens them, and sees Freddy standing behind Julie. He tells Julie to look behind her, but she doesn’t see anything. Which doesn’t stop Freddy from stabbing her with his claws and lifting her in the air.

Heather demands to be allowed to leave.

In Dylan’s room, the nurses break in just as Julie is dangled in the air, then dragged across the floor, up the wall, and onto the ceiling. There’s blood everywhere. Julie asks Dylan to help her.

Then she falls from the ceiling to the floor.

Dylan yells for his mom, and then for Rex. He runs away.

Heather sucker-elbows a nurse and finds a dead Julie on the floor. The doctor assures Heather that Dylan can’t get out of the hospital, because he’s been sedated. Heather reminds the doctor, loudly, that Dylan sleepwalks.

And she knows where he’s going. Freeway time!

Heather escapes to the parking garage, and goes driving after Dylan. She sees him climbing up onto the freeway. He starts to cross the freeway, but there are cars everywhere, so a massive Freddy in the sky uses his claws to hook Dylan into the air so he can dangle just about the high-speed traffic.

Not quite sure what Freddy’s end-game is here.

Heather runs across the freeway, and lots and lots of vehicles go screaming around, crashing into each other. Heather is hit by a car and goes flying. People pick her up and ask if she’s okay.

Meanwhile, Dylan has been set down by Freddy. He looks one way, and sees many, many, many Freddys (Freddies?) coming towards him, so he goes the opposite direction.

Heather sees that Dylan is gone and runs away from all the people who want to know if she has internal bleeding, and if Johnny Depp is just as nice a guy as he seems to be.

She gets to her house, and the door is open. She calls to Dylan, then gets a false-scare from her Nancy-dad, who is in the house.

So is Dylan. Heather hugs him, and tells her surrogate father that she knows who killed Chase. She tells him it was Freddy, and he doesn’t believe her.

John asks Heather to step outside for a moment, without Dylan.

They leave. Dylan hears a noise. In his bedroom, the bed starts to shake and smoke. Something grows under the sheets. A claw comes out.

I mean, obviously it’s Freddy under there. But wouldn’t it have been interesting if it wasn’t? If, say, Wes Craven suddenly popped out of the corner and said, “Ladies and gentlemen, The Rolling Stones!” and then the band kicked into “Satisfaction?”

Non-linear thinking like this may be why I’m not famous.

Outside, Heather talks to John, only he keeps calling her Nancy, and he doesn’t know who Robert Englund is, and he insists that Freddy is dead and that “Nancy” doesn’t want to “end up like her mother.”

Also, he’s got a badge and a gun.

Heather tells “not-John” “I love you too, Daddy,” and Freddy steps into Dylan’s bedroom and goes into prowl mode.

Outside, not-John turns on his flashing police light and drives away. The “Nightmare on Elm Street” music starts up. Nancy/Heather turns out, and her house has turned into the Nancy house, complete with (I simply cannot believe it) a blue door. Yes, really. Only took them six movies to get it right again.

Nancy/Heather runs into the house, while on the soundtrack, someone (sounds like it could be Dylan) does the Freddy chant.

Inside the Nancy/Heather house, Nancy/Heather is now dressed in her pajamas. She hears a voice, and grabs a knife from the kitchen. She watches the (still unplugged) TV as it shows the scene from part one wherein Nancy tells her dad to be ready to arrest Freddy once Nancy goes and gets him.

The TV fuzzes out.

Nancy/Heather spots a yellow pill on the floor. She picks it up. She looks at it. She says, for the audience’s benefit, that they’re Dylan’s sleeping pills, and we get a voiceover thing about Hansel and Gretel and the breadcrumbs. For the people who were making out during that part of the movie.

Heather goes into Dylan’s bedroom, where she finds Rex with his sides re-slashed, with stuffing all over the floor.

She goes to Dylan’s bed, and finds another pill. She moves the sheets around. Then she says, “Join you. You’ve given me a way to join you.”

She takes two sleeping pills, lifts up the bed sheet, and crawls under the sheets towards the foot of the bed.

Under the bed, there’s a long passage made of sheet. She slides down it. It becomes a long passage made of metal and ugly windows. Nancy/Heather keeps on sliding.

Eventually, she falls into a huge, cavernous room that looks an awful lot like the one from the start of the movie.

Dylan calls to her. She calls back. She moves around the set that probably cost about 1/5 of the budget of the movie, while we get little glimpses of Freddy, who says things like, “Almost there.”

She looks around, and spots a collection of pages on the ground. It’s a screenplay. She picks it up and starts reading. From the screenplay. Which says:

Heather (OS) (reading) The more she read, the more she realized what she had in her hands was nothing more or less than her life itself. That everything she had experienced and thought was bound within these pages. There was no movie. There was only… her… life…

Someone grabs Nancy/Heather. It’s Dylan. Who says, “It’s just me.”

Hey Dylan – if you want to grow up, you might want to consider not startling a hungry actress carrying a large knife.

Dylan and Nancy/Heather hug. She asks where Freddy is. Dylan said, “He had me, but then he let me go.”

Freddy grabs Nancy/Heather from behind. She drops Dylan. Freddy holds her over a puddle filled with snakes. Or eels. I really have no idea. Nancy/Heather grabs a snake and jams it into Freddy’s eye.

Freddy lets go of Nancy/Heather. He pulls the snake out of his eye. Nancy/Heather punches Freddy in the face, and he falls over.

More fighting ensues. Freddy holds Nancy/Heather against the wall and is about to start slashin’, except Dylan picks up the forgotten knife on the floor and stabs him in the back of the knee with it.

Freddy pulls it out, and gets ready to attack Dylan. But no, Nancy jumps on Freddy’s back. He throws her into a shallow pool of water.

Freddy runs after Dylan. Dylan runs away.

Nancy, who appeared unconscious but I guess wasn’t, drags herself up out of the pool. Off-camera. So we have no idea how she did it, since I thought she was unconscious.

Dylan runs from Freddy. This next part is annoying to explain, but I’m going to do it because I know it’s important to you.

Throughout the cavern are a bunch of what look like little fireplaces, with metal doors. What they really are, are square rooms with some flame in the middle of them from some source we can’t see. But there’s a metal door on the front of them.

Dylan goes into one of the rooms, and Freddy tries to reach him, only he can’t get his shoulders through the tiny doorway to the room.

So he starts stretching his arm. Slowly. To build tension. Because if he did it quick, how bleak would that ending be?

Nancy/Heather finally wakes up and grabs the knife off the floor, and goes running. She’s almost there, but she gets stuck on the stairs, which turn into goo, just like in the original “Nightmare.”

Freddy finally grabs Dylan, and instead of stabbing him to death, he says he’s going to eat Dylan up, and his head and mouth start expanding, like he’s a snake or something. Dylan screams.

Freddy stuffs Dylan’s head into his mouth.

But right in the nick of time, Nancy/Heather gets up the stairs and stabs Freddy. Dylan escapes. Nancy/Heather tells Dylan to get out of there, and lucky for him, the only thing blocking his path is a boa constrictor on a branch covering a little window-hole.

Meanwhile, Freddy, whose lower half is stuck outside the little square room, turns his upper half around and sticks his tongue out at Nancy/Heather. The tongue gets longer and longer, and wraps around Nancy/Heather. A lot.

Dylan comes around the corner, and grab’s the end of Freddy’s tongue, and tries to stab it with Nancy/Heather’s knife. He keeps missing. Freddy, in turn, sort of mugs. I’m not sure what they were going for, here. Is it supposed to be funny? Because it’s completely draining the tension out of the scene. Freddy is about one quip away from being a buffoon again, here.

Finally, Dylan succeeds in stabbing Freddy’s tongue. He yanks it back, which causes Freddy to end up with a forked tongue.

Freddy falls into the square room he previously couldn’t get into. Nancy/Heather and Dylan slam the door shut and pull some kind of lever, which causes the flames to shoot up in the air and consume Freddy.

Who starts on fire, and sprouts horns, so he looks like, you know, the devil. Then he explodes, and fire shoots up in the various ovens.

Not sure why Freddy didn’t just fry Dylan before. Also not sure why Freddy didn’t just run out the exact same hole Dylan just used to escape.

Nancy/Heather tells Dylan to run. They run. A series of things that are supposed to be ruins but are clearly models blow up real good. Fire ‘splodes everywhere.

Nancy/Heather and Dylan jump into the shallow pool, which is suddenly a lot deeper.

Everything goes BOOM!

Heather and Dylan fall out of the foot of Dylan’s bed.

There’s lots of smoke everywhere but nothing is on fire. They both recite part of Hansel and Gretel for the people who stopped caring about the metaphor over an hour ago.

Nancy looks down at the floor, and sees a screenplay there. There’s a note on it from Wes. “Heather – Thanks for having the guts to play Nancy one last time. At last Freddy’s back where he belongs. Regards, Wes.”

There is no P.S. like, “Sorry I killed your husband in the process. That was my bad.”

Or, “There are a bunch of cops at the door. Good luck trying to explain what happened without getting locked up for a good long while.”

Or, “Sorry the ending didn’t make a truckload of sense. I said I could write a movie around this concept without actually realizing that there would be, like, logistics and stuff to think about.”

Heather turns to the last page of the script, which has Dylan asking “Is it a story?” and her saying that it’s a story. Dylan asks her to read some of it.

So Heather turns to the first page and starts reading the start of the movie to us, with the whole Freddy claws being built thing.

The screen goes to black, and we get a strange little dance remix of the “Nightmare” theme. The nightmare is finally ov – oh, what was that? There’s another movie? That pretty much ignores this one?