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"A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

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"A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

Old 09-22-19, 11:03 PM
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"A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge





A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988)



Selected by JAX036


Spoiler:





















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These "October Horror Movie Challenge" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 FILM SUBSET list.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day.
You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day.
Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.



Spoiler tags aren't always used in here, so if you have yet to see the film BEWARE OF POSSIBLE SPOILERS.
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2019 DISCUSSION | 2019 LISTS


Last edited by Chad; 10-20-19 at 03:46 PM.
Old 10-07-19, 12:36 AM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

I decided to get this one out of the way early. I would basically rank it right at its number in the series. I'd put it behind the first, third and New Nightmare. It has a lot of great elements in it. I think this is a solid entry. It suffers from losing Patricia Arquette. She cast a stronger figure than any of the other actors in this. It teeters on camp but doesn't go nearly as far as the next two films would go. I've always really liked the roach death. That one has always stood out to me.

Last edited by clckworang; 10-22-19 at 01:08 AM.
Old 10-21-19, 12:52 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

Dream Master is slickly produced and well staged but without some of the teasing buildup that make horror movie greats. My favorite kill are the ‘suck face’ math one or the cockroach weight lifted. I especially liked the ending montage where Alice gears up with stuff from her dead friends to confidently face Freddy. Some great effects with Freddy’s death scene.

I like part 2 the best out of the sequels but need to revisit. I think Dream Warriors, the previous film, is the worst Nightmare on Elm Street film shoehorning Christianity into the Nightmare on Elm Street mythos. I usually love continuous sequels like Dream Master and was glad to see them step away from the failings of part 3. Even when necessary one of the problems with Nightmare on Elm Street is how no two films include the same Freddy character –part 1 is a predator getting revenge, part 2 he bodily possesses his subject, part 3 he opposes Christianity, and in part 4 he is a ‘Collector of Souls.’ Robert Englund doesn’t get as much screen time here as needed dulling some of the kills where the victims are too often running around a junk yard, seeing a ‘claw shark’ at the beach, or karate fighting a disembodied glove. Robert Englund must have really made someone mad. Parts feel like an ‘insert random dream scene and repeat’ mode rather than feeling like there’s a presence.

It’s funny that the kills all involve high school older kids, but whenever they show victims it’s always kids giggling or children singing a nursery rhyme – that a movie so explicitly about killing kids would not be able break out of the taboos of showing kids being killed.
Old 10-21-19, 01:09 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

What the fudge are you on? Where you coming up with the whole "christinanity" thing for Elm Street 3?
Old 10-21-19, 02:17 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

I think this is the last entry in the franchise I enjoy quite a bit. It’s not as good as the first or third but it still has it’s moments. I think you can tell it’s the start of the decline in quality though and is where more comedy started to be incorporated into the Freddy character.

The Dream Child and Freddy’s Dead are considerably worse films, and while New Nightmare is often listed as a favorite of many fans it’s never been one I’ve liked very much.
Old 10-21-19, 02:35 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by urrutiap
What the fudge are you on? Where you coming up with the whole "christinanity" thing for Elm Street 3?

What? Go re-watch Nightmare on Elm Street [3]: Dream Warriors, it's not at all subtle.

Nightmare on Elm Street: Dream Warriors plot spoilers:
Spoiler:
They kill Freddy by praying, dousing him with holy water, and placing a prayer cross over his 'real life' skeleton after finding out he is the progeny of a shamed nun.



Last edited by Undeadcow; 10-21-19 at 02:51 PM.
Old 10-21-19, 02:57 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

I'm currently watching Part 3 now which is my favorite in the series, even over the original. I think the Christianity thing actually adds very well to Freddy's mythos. It's one of my favorite aspects of the movie. That and Patricia Arquette, Laurence Fishbourne, and the return of Nancy and her father. If you don't like Christianity, sounds like more of a personal problem than a knock against the movie.

As for Part 4, it's currently on deck, but I've seen it enough times to comment. There are things I both like and dislike about this film. One, I think Tuesday Knight is a poor replacement for Arquette. It really messed up the chemistry with Kristin, Roland, and Joey returning from the previous installment. Then, they just dispose of her long enough to push Alice to the forefront as the main antagonist. Now, Alice was the best part of this movie. Watching her develop from this shy teen who daydreams to badass demon slayer was done very well in the short amount of time they had to do it. I liked her taking on aspects of her friends' personality every time they passed. I liked the Dream Master rhyme, but felt Freddy seeing his reflection was a lame way to go... but overall, I enjoy this one. I'd probably rank it below 3 and the original. Depending on the day, it and Part 2 would switch places. So, for me, it's the 3rd or 4th best in the series.
Old 10-21-19, 03:03 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by MysterioMan007
I'm currently watching Part 3 now which is my favorite in the series, even over the original. I think the Christianity thing actually adds very well to Freddy's mythos. It's one of my favorite aspects of the movie. That and Patricia Arquette, Laurence Fishbourne, and the return of Nancy and her father. If you don't like Christianity, sounds like more of a personal problem than a knock against the movie...
I respect that, it's not strictly 'no Christianity' it's that they took a sizzlingly unique premise and seemed to morph it into another Exorcist style Satanic/Demon trope. Personally I felt it was an odd addition to the character and somewhat changed the way he seemed to me in the first two films as a more surreal omniscient dream creature rather than some subjugate of God. Sorry to drift too far off topic; to me so many talented contributors in Nightmare on Elm Street struggled with finding a consistent vision of Freddy. Freddy being unique in having more of a personality than others, unlike Jaws or the typical silence Michael/Jason killer which perhaps changed more visually but seemed the same core character (in part because they just stood there menacingly and that's not as detailed).

Last edited by Undeadcow; 10-21-19 at 03:10 PM.
Old 10-21-19, 03:16 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by Undeadcow
I respect that, it's not strictly 'no Christianity' it's more than they took a really cool premise and seemed to morph it into another Exorcist style Satanic/Demon trope. Personally I felt it was an odd addition to the character and somewhat changed the way he seemed to me in the first two films as a more omniscient dream creature rather than some subjugate of God. Sorry to drift too far off topic; so many talented contributors to Nightmare on Elm Street struggled with finding a consistent vision of Freddy. Freddy being unique in having more of a personality than others, unlike Jaws or the typical silence Michael/Jason killer.
I saw it more of an attempt to explain why Freddy was such a bad person while he was alive. The son of a 1000 maniacs... he's basically the offspring of one of the most heinous acts one can commit. Is it any worse because the victim was a nun? No, but I see the symbolism in it. Plus, I just see the holy water stuff the same way as vampires or demons. I thought it was pretty effective. I mean, essentially dog piss negated it all anyway and Freddy came back...

Old 10-21-19, 03:36 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by MysterioMan007
I saw it more of an attempt to explain why Freddy was such a bad person while he was alive. The son of a 1000 maniacs... he's basically the offspring of one of the most heinous acts one can commit. Is it any worse because the victim was a nun? No, but I see the symbolism in it. Plus, I just see the holy water stuff the same way as vampires or demons. I thought it was pretty effective. I mean, essentially dog piss negated it all anyway and Freddy came back...
Symbolism is lacking in some horror movies; the attempt to elevate the franchise beyond hacking and slashing is noble. Sometimes I worry that a plague on the genre is the 'need' to explain the origins of evil, which too often makes less sense and takes away from sensationalism. However seeing things metaphorically is important, that there's some weight and meaning beyond the superficial bloodshed. Vampires analogies for lust (or xenophobia), werewolves stories of anger, and Freddy Krueger the external quest for spiritual redemption (never mind the dog pee).
Old 10-21-19, 04:19 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

I think you need to lay off the ganji. the sticky icky
Old 10-21-19, 04:33 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by urrutiap
I think you need to lay off the ganji. the sticky icky
You're more than welcome to disagree, but I don't see how a post like this is productive at all or adds anything to the conversation.

Originally Posted by Undeadcow
Sometimes I worry that a plague on the genre is the 'need' to explain the origins of evil
Yes. Along those same lines, that's why I try to forget that the sequels to Halloween exist...that Laurie Strode is just some random babysitter rather than Michael Myers' sister.
Old 10-21-19, 06:37 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

I was in full Freddy obsession mode when this came out. I had seen the first on cable, and Parts 2 and 3 on their opening nights. I had a VHS tape with Parts 1-3 on it recorded in EP mode (YUK!). And each movie is only about 90 minutes so that left a whole 90 minutes remaining on the tape, which I promptly filled with ANYTHING Freddy related that aired on TV; making of segments, MTV specials with Freddy as host, commercials.... anything that involved Freddy, I was taping it!

I loved Part 4 when it came out. It didn't bother me that Freddy was a jokester because that is what I was into when I was 14. And it gave me plenty of material to use when I played Freddy in the Church haunted house. However, while it's still a fun movie, it doesn't hold up as well as the first three do. I just remind myself that it is a product of it's time. A perfect snapshot of where horror was at that time.


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Old 10-21-19, 06:59 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

The famous resurrection of Freddy via dog piss. A fun film overall, but lacking any real scares. 6/10
Old 10-21-19, 11:43 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

I'll always remember watching this as a child and seeing the dog pee out fire lol
Old 10-22-19, 12:37 AM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

I think they were shooting for "The dog desecrated the grave (which was marked as hallowed ground) and therefore freed Freddy from his boundaries", but it just came off as "dog piss resurrected Freddy".
Old 10-22-19, 08:41 AM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge

It’s safe to say it’s been 20 years since I’ve seen this and with any luck, it’ll be another 20 until I need to watch it again. Other than Robert, the acting was atrocious. Effects are great though.
Old 10-29-19, 02:42 PM
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Re: "A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" Reviews/Discussion - 2019 Horror Challenge





Lisa Wilcox mentioned these "Alice Lives" nunchucks on Svengoolie.

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