Friday, July 20, 2007

Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare

Staring: Robert Englund, Lisa Zane, Shon Greenblatt, Breckin Meyer, Yaphet Kotto.
Directed by: Rachel Talalay.

For all intents and purposes "Freddy's Revenge" is the "Halloween 3" of the series. You’d think that things could not get worse than the second Freddy film, well it takes a certain kind of film and this is it.

The plot takes a drastic turn (for the worst) in this installment delving into previously unheard of back-history of Freddy. The plot revolves around who Freddy’s long lost (and previous to this) unheard of child. How could the “bastard son of 100 maniacs” have had such a stable life as to actually settle down and have a family, let alone a kid you ask? Beats me. What is also interesting is that if his illness (and fondness of killing) is heredity, why his child isn’t prone to the same urges he was. But that's bad horror films for ya.

So a bunch of teens are traveling to Springwood, and apparently by this point the entire population of teens and children have been wiped out. How this has happened in just 10 or so years without anyone outside of the town really raising an eyebrow is a little beyond me, but I digress. What they discover is a town molded after a two-bit version of Twin Peaks – with cameos from Roseanne and Tom Arnold to boot. I’m guessing it was all the rage in 1991.

Then there’s the deaths. Not to be outdone by worse deaths, this film has the least horrifying and quite possibly the worst deaths in the entire series. They’re played up as a complete parody of previous films, something which really bugs me because Freddy at one point had been horrifying – something he was by the time everything was fixed again in New Nightmare.

Personally I think the worst decision was giving the film to Rachel Talalay. This is not because she’s a woman, but because she made horrible creative choices. One only needs to watch behind the scene specials where she discusses the creative changes of the storyline from this film and the last three films (which were directly linked to the first film). They changed the entire setting of the film – and dropped a perfectly fine story arc – while Alice’s story was pretty much over – by completely blindsiding the storyline it only makes this entry weaker. The issues that came up in the previous installment – many complained about how there were few deaths – were not fixed because it was more like a Tex Avery cartoon when Freddy was doing the killing.

A lot of this is compounded by the poor ending with the two color 3-D sequence at the end of the film (DVD comes with the glasses so you can see it in all it's terrible glory).

Half star /*****

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