Movie Name: A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge
Studio: Smart Egg Pictures
Release Date(s): November 1, 1985
MPAA Rating: R
Jessie Walsh (Mark Patton) and his family have just moved to Springwood into a home on Elm Street. When Jessie begins suffering dreams of someone called Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund), Freddy seems to be trying to possess him. Jessie learns the home was the home of a girl who claimed to have similar dreams and Jessie and his girlfriend Lisa Webber (Kim Myers) try to head off Freddy. As people begin to die, Jessie questions if he is responsible.
Directed by Jack Sholder, A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge was a bigger moneymaker than the first Nightmare on Elm Street. This movie cemented Freddy Krueger as a cultural icon and guaranteed sequels due to its success.
This often is listed as fans’ least favorite Nightmare on Elm Street in the original franchise. The movie isn’t very long and Freddy barely has any screen time due to the possession set-up. The whole possession thing does switch-up the original film’s concept since Jessie doesn’t want to fall asleep to prevent Freddy from escaping to the real world. With little Freddy however, A Nightmare on Elm Street loses its appeal.
Despite the lack of Freddy, A Nightmare on Elm Street 2 does have better effects (including better make-up on Freddy). Some of the imagery in the film is pretty creepy. Once Freddy “erupts” from Jessie, the movie gets pretty entertaining…it is unfortunate it takes so long (and also doesn’t explain how Jessie would get out of the trouble he was in at the end of the film).
I kind of like the Freddy in this film. In both A Nightmare on Elm Street and this film, Freddy is less humorous than later films. He is very animalistic and more of a killer. He delivers one-liners but it is tempered with a much darker and more dangerous side. It is too bad that this killer aspect of Freddy is tempered by the whole Freddy/Jessie thing.
The Freddy/Jessie thing is often pointed out as creating a psycho-sexual tension in the movie. Many critics state that the movie has a real homosexual aspect to it that is an undertone for the whole film. There is the overt segment when Jessie kills his gym teacher (Marshall Bell) who is at a gay bar and suffers a dominatrix style death, but the whole Freddy is “inside of Jessie and trying to get out” aspect is painted as a closeted homosexual story. The producers have discussed that they partially chose Mark Patton because he has a slight feminine side to him instead of a macho hero.
Though I’m not a particular fan of Freddy’s Revenge, it is an interesting movie. It is a sequel does actually change things, but it doesn’t work. The movie is a different sequel, but 1987’s A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors gets back to the feel of the original A Nightmare on Elm Street.
A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987)
A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988)
A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (1989)
Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991)
Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (1994)
A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)