5.01.2010

...And leave the driving to us


We at first considered leaving part one out of the poll; making it a 'what's your favorite sequel' kinda thing. The only reason for that would be to avoid a somewhat annoying predictability. You all know part one is not particularly my favorite -- I don't even really like it too much. So, the let-down doesn't come from that, as much as it does from the eye-rolling obviousness. But furthermore, & most importantly, is that my dislike for both the movie and the blind popularity for it does not grow out of the fact that it is so popular -- much like the way people demonized Titanic purely for the fact that it was so loved by so many, while having no real articulate argument against the movie itself.
Therein lies my beef. I've never heard a real good argument for Nightmare one. I've had people tell me they love it (clearly), but an intelligent defense has yet to be brought to my attention. & I have asked, & what I usually get is a rundown of the plot told to me in pseudo-intellectual synonyms, & that it had great fx. Either that, or "Well, it scared me as a kid..." & I guess this is enough for people: a great concept with special effects. Armageddon is a great concept with special effects. Point being, there's a link or two missing from this chain. Because, really, if you take these two qualities, then you have exactly what NOES 2010 is. So, technically, you should've all loved the new one, yes?
What this all boils down to is we'd love for you to tell us what it is about Wes's masterpiece that's so awesome. & I'm not looking for an argument; I'm a bigger Freddy fan than you, you, & you -- probably the reason I can't seem to let this go. The weather's starting to heat up almost to my liking, which, for us, means there'll be a Nightmare on our tv at any given moment until the end of August. That's just nostalgic tradition, & it's only coincidence that there just happens to be the stink of the remake in the air... produced by the guy who made Armageddon. So, while I've got you here, & while we're both in the mood, let's broaden our minds! Lawrence...?
video

11 comments:

Max Kyburz said...

I still don't quite understand just what is your issue with the first NOES, because I know you've said that you didn't like it, but I haven't seen any argument as to WHY you dislike it.

Paul Proulx + Jessica Sargent said...

You're right - you haven't seen it. I don't write reviews - for reasons that are probably more multi-layered than any review I'd write. That being said, if I really REALLY needed to, I most definitely could. Ironically, this is a good example of my conundrum: rather than getting an emotional, articulate defense of the film, people just ASSUME that it's great, & that it's a unanimous sentiment.

Max Kyburz said...

Fair enough.

Max Kyburz said...

My assumption as to why everyone thinks it's so great is because it is the first. Like A New Hope, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Halloween, etc. the first NOES is the film that "started it all" even though the slasher film had been hashed and rehashed for many years. People remember it for being the introductory material and the rest of the sequels as just retreads of the first film. By being the first, it has a certain "purity" about it.

Also, I think it's because not many people who have seen the first have seen the rest of the sequels. Most people see the first NOES and are satisfied with it, then they move on to the next thing. Only a real handful of people actually go out of their way to see the rest of them, but (again I'm just assuming) you probably haven't found them on this site. I can only imagine that the reason that the first NOES has an outstanding...well, standing in your poll is because it's really the only one most people have seen.

Like you said, this probably isn't a sound "argument" but its not a personal one, just my opinion on what everyone else probably thinks.

Reilysclone said...

I'll chime in. I'll preface by saying I do like all of the entries to varying degrees, with 1 being the best and 3 being the most fun to watch.

What makes 1 great to me is how it taps into how fucked it can feel be a teenager. The hopelessness due to parents who don't understand or simply won't listen is very universal. Even when there's a boogeyman trying to murder you in your sleep, your own caretakers & providers may simply dismiss you and your nonsense. Awake or alive, you're screwed. It also hurts that the children are paying for the sins of their parents that they won't own up to (one of the themes I did like that each entry seemed to pick up on was the idea of negligent or distant parents). There IS a bit of clunky acting in the teen roles, but it's nothing distracting, and Depp & Langenkamp do a good job at portraying them as actual victims of history & circumstance, not just meat for the slasher.

Craven is definitely responsible for some horrible crap, but NOES shows off his skills well. The only real flaw I can think of (as far as scares go) is how Freddy playfully cuts off his fingers & chest in his intros. I guess it's in there to show what a psycho he is, but it feels a little out of place. That said, he does a great job for the rest of the film. Tina's death definitely makes it hit the ground running, but unlike the sequels, it doesn't feel like the rest of the movie is trying to run from fantastic set piece to the next. The gags add to the mysterious atmosphere (dead Tina, Freddy coming out of the wall) and build later to the more absurd ones (the blood geyser, the Freddy tongue phone). The sequels are more fun with the weird & wacky dream sequences, but they never feel anything more than fun show-like.

All that said, I dig NOES however it comes. I un-ironically love that Freddy whips out the Power Glove as a fuck you to Tracey in 6. Still probably not seeing the remake.

Joey said...
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Joey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
joeymauro said...

I can't very well speak for everyone else - simply because your argument that the majority accepts NOES 1 as the best for no reason is correct - so I will only explain the reasons I like it (and right now, I'm not completely certain if its my favorite, there's about 4 that for me are more-or-less a tie with each other, so, I'm not saying why this is the best, just why I like it):

1) The cinematography and general atmosphere that exists in the real world and especially in the dream is the most appealing to me of all the movies. It has this slight surrealistic quality to it that is a lot more mythic and mysterious than the other ones. Basically - and I understand that it partly has to do with the fact that its the first - Freddy seems the most distant and therefore more unpredictable and supernatural.

2) The dialogue has never been a thing people rave about in this series, and this movie it isn't very good either, but for me, I like it the best and although it still has its really unrealistic and stupid moments, it is the most believable dialogue to me.

3) The death sequences are the best of being actually somewhat frightening/or disturbing, I mean Freddy gets more fun and thematic in the later films, but the ones in the first one are very original as far as nightmares go in they are all good enough to the point were they are not unintentionally laughable.

4) Best cast, this may be a tie with NOES3, but I think this one has the best/most believable acting and simply contains a lot of people I like and they all do more than sufficient jobs: John Saxon, Johnny Depp, Heather Lagenkamp, Ronee Blakely, Charlie Fleicher, etc.

Not too much to say, but I'm just giving some possible viable reasons why it's liked more than others.

In fact, on the poll I voted for 7, 2, and 3 because I like all of them pretty much equally and wanted to see where the poll would go if the winner wasn't the original.

Aaron said...

I voted for New Nightmare, all the way.

I need to see the series again, it's been a coon's age.

Eric Marchen said...

I thought the compilation was well done. I just wanted to know the name of the songs and artists you used.

Paul Proulx + Jessica Sargent said...

"Dream Warriors" Dokken,
"Fatal Charm" Billy Idol
"How Can I Live" Ill Nino
"On the Air Tonight" WIlly Finlayson
"Everything Remains The Same" Junk Monkeys

& thanks!

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