Who would've thought that when this particular film was released in 1984 it would make its way as one of the top flicks in the horror genre of all-time? The film was released ten years before my birth, so how should I know how audiences reacted to the film? Grasping a strong sense of curiosity, I asked my parents and learned their input on the film when it released during their high-school days. Oddly enough, for the first time my parents have actually reminisced on something I actually care to hear about.
Corey: So, how old were you when A Nightmare on Elm Street was released?
Dad: I was-I want to say, sixteen years old.
Corey: Did you see the film on the big-screen?
Dad: I saw it opening day! Me and a big group of friends went and saw it together. It was a blast.
Corey: Best horror movie of your time?
Dad: All of the best horror-movies came out during my time so that's a tough question. It was definitely one of the scariest though---you know, before the sequels got ridiculous.
Corey: What was the crowd's reaction to the film?
Dad: Jesus, it was years ago, Corey. How am I supposed to remember? Good, I would say.
Corey: Alright, well, I guess that's all I need.
Dad: Why are you even asking me all this?
Corey: I was just curious, that's all.
Corey: Mom, you've seen the original A Nightmare on Elm Street, right?
Mom: Of course I did. It was me and your father's very first date.
Corey: First date? He said that he went to see it with a group of fri---never mind. Uh, so how did the audience respond to what Wes Craven had created? Clearly he had come up with a film that contained a brilliant concept. I'm curious to how people responded to it when they first saw it..
Mom: They responded....hmmm, I'm just trying to think back here, well let me put it this way: My friends and I saw it at least four times in the cinema.
Corey: So you obviously liked it then?
Mom: Well, it's not that I particularly liked it, it was just the only thing out at the time that everyone wanted to see. Literally, this was the movie that everyone wanted to see. By the time that it had come out to the time it was pulled from the theaters, just about everyone at school had seen it.
Corey: What was it like to be with the crowd that was able to experience who this Fred Kruger was for the first time? Kids nowadays know him because he's a familiar face to the genre.
Mom: Seeing this movie and not really know who this Fred Kruger was, how he looked, why he was doing this to these poor teenagers in their dreams was a good mystery. You kids seeing the film now already know just about everything you need to know about the killer even before seeing the movie. And that's no fun! When I first saw Kruger's burnt-up face and his scratchy claws, let me tell you, I couldn't get it out of my head, or dreams for that matter, for a good month.
Corey: So the movie affected you?
Mom: Yes! Now you kids look up to this Fred Kruger as something "cool". Hell, when I was your age he wasn't cool. He was a dark, creepy motherfu---
Corey: Mom, do you have to swear in my interview?
Corey: Even now kids of this generation can think Fred Kruger as a dark, creepy character, can't they?
Mom: Well...after the first one came the character was never really the same. The sequels, to my advantage then, were hilarious. Kruger's character was much lighter after the first movie. The cheesy punch-lines, cornball laugh...eh, it killed the character.
Corey: I've always found the difference from Freddy in film one from film 2 on to be amusing. That's what makes the first film a true classic. It's the only Nightmare on Elm Street flick that truly provides the scares. The rest were just practical jokes on its own character. A bit lame? Yes. I still found them fun though.
Mom: Honestly, I couldn't remember the sequels if I tried. The first is the only one out of the, how many there is now, that is actually a fantastic example of the horror-genre.
Corey: Hmmm...alright, well thanks. I've got "homework" to get to.
Freddy Kruger is definitely my favorite slasher in the horror-genre. Whether it's the creepy Fred from the original-flick or the drop-dead humorous cheese-ball Freddy from the sequels, he is and always will be one of the greatest movie-villains ever crafted. All that goes thanks to Wes Craven, the so-called "horror-master". He lost that title from my standards with just about everything he's made other than his 1984 horror masterpiece. This original flick sets up an original concept, builds tension perfectly, and the music cues are extraordinary. A Nightmare on Elm Street is without a doubt one of the best films to ever enter the horror-genre. It introduced the world to a character that, from what I've heard, no one ever expected to be so loved. Be sure to stop on by tomorrow night to catch an exclusive interview from my uncle, and of course my words as well on A Nightmare on Elm Street part 2: Freddy's Revenge. Things get shitty!
Thanks for the read!
-Interview by Corey Wood