So far, A Nightmare on Elm Street series haven’t been that bad. Honestly, at this point in the other series, it was getting a little sketchy for the past two years highlights. This one only has one a little more iffy one in the second one. A lot of you have been warning me that its going to go downhill after the first. I’m starting to wonder if this one seems to be working a little too much for than normal. However, its not a bad thing. Moving on, we’re on the 5th installment and this one is called Dream Child. Are they pulling this Dream Warriors, Dream Master and now Dream Child thing a little too far? We’ll see, right?
A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (1989)
Director: Stephen Hopkins
Cast: Lisa Wilcox, Robert Englund, Danny Hassel, Kelly Jo Minter, Erika Anderson, Joe Seely, Nicholas Mele
Alice and Dan has started dating after the last installment. They have been Freddy Krueger free. Now, its high school graduation except she starts to realize that she’s falling into dream sequences while she’s awake in a way. She soon realizes that her friends are being picked off while she is fully awake as well and it makes her wonder how its being done until she learns that she’s pregnant. It turns out that Freddy is attacking through her unborn son and the only one that can stop him is the spirit of Freddy’s mother, Amanda which she and her friends need to find a way to free before its too late.
How to write about Nightmare 5: The Dream Child? Let’s start with some good stuff.
First of all, I appreciate that this one continues to build on the previous story. On top of that, they managed to still have Lisa Wilcox play Alice and Danny Hassel play Dan. Its great to have familiar faces. This time, they have built some new friendships. One of them is a girl whose mom wants her to become a model called Greta, an aspiring comic book illustrator (or writer?) Mark and a smart girl called Yvonne. The last installment had start this rather predictable turn of events of just the order of how the characters are killed off. One thing that is intriguing is how Freddy wants to kill in the real world now. Its not about the Dream Warriors and revenging the ones who killed him. However, I also like the decision to build on the fact that now we know about his background and how he was conceived and they choose to expand that storyline into his mom, Amanda.
Another a good thing is that they use a really creepy kid that we soon learn is the Dream Child which is weirdly the grown up version of her unborn baby. I always think having kids in movies always add some creepy factors in here. Although this boy isn’t around a lot, the moments he shows up does add some mystery. Plus, he is a naive character and seemingly influenced by Freddy Krueger. The only thing is that it feels like he wasn’t built on much.
We are slowing inching into the bad of Nightmare 5. My main criticism are in the kills. Freddy is now brutal. Even more than he was taking revenge before. It seems a little weird to me this choice but in this one, the kills are graphic and truly very disgusting. I can get that it helps increase the insanity of the character of Freddy. I just found it was such a huge leap from the previous installments. Let’s step back to the first one where I thought Johnny Depp’s kill was very gory but it was still just blood and campy and a glorious kill in itself. But for this one, there was one kill that I found really creative and honestly the effects weren’t bad and its the one up there. For those who have seen this, for two of the characters, it was downright dragged out and explicit and just so unnecessary to be hitting that territory.
For that, A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child was destroyed. Its sad that one aspect was strong enough for me to go from mildly enjoying it to feeling weirded out and then downright disgusted literally by the movie. I’m not one to be squeamish about slasher flicks and blood and most of the time, gore that even bother me too much but I just feel the way some kill choices went down really made me question where this franchise is going and how they are changing who Freddy is. I can understand that now that the main deed is done and they still found a way to continue the main story (which is a good decision), that they had to find a way to change it but this was not the way I liked it.
Overall, Dream Child is a below average installment. It wasn’t the snoozefest that Freddy’s Revenge (Part 2) was but while I can appreciate the efforts, I’m starting to feel that the different directors are finally hitting some bumpy roads as the style starts changing. I just don’t even have enough confidence that there’s a good direction to move on after this one.
Have you seen The Dream Child/Part 5? What are your thoughts?