Movie Critic Roundup Looks at A Nightmare on Elm Street

Posted on: April/30/2010 10:12 PM

Yahoo! Movies posted a summary of what movie critics think of A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010):

A Nightmare on Elm Street
You can’t talk about the new “Nightmare” flick without comparing Mr. Haley’s performance as Freddy to that of original baddie Robert Englund. After all, Englund played Freddy in eight films and a TV series. So how does Earle stack up?

Michael Rechtshaffen of The Hollywood Reporter writes that while there’s “admittedly something truly unsavory about Haley’s portrayal… there’s just no replacing Englund.” That said, Mr. Rechtshaffen didn’t like the movie as a whole. His bottom line: “Good luck staying awake.”

Roger Ebert is not much of a fan of this redux either. He gives the movie just one star out of four and writes that he watched the horror movie with “weary resignation.” Ebert doesn’t delve into who was the better Freddy, but Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune writes that, in the new movie, Jackie Earle Haley is underused. “The role asks criminally little of him beneath all that goopy melted-face makeup.”

Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly gives the movie a “B-,” and compliments Haley on his “dour malevolence.” Overall, though, the EW critic calls the new “Nightmare” a “by-the-numbers bad dream that plays a little too much like a rerun.”

Filmcritic.com’s Bill Gibron really liked what he saw, giving the movie four out of five stars and calls Haley “brilliant in the role — not too comical, always too cruel — and imbued with a sinister tragedy that is hard to shake.” However, Jen Chaney of the Washington Post disagrees. She argues that while Haley “pours every bit of menace he can muster into Krueger,” she found his makeup “completely unterrifying.” Robert Englund was, in her opinion, “irreplaceable” because he “knew how to have a killer good time.”

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15 Responses to Movie Critic Roundup Looks at A Nightmare on Elm Street

  1. britney says:

    OMG!!!! the new freddy suuuuuuuuuucked!!! he looked like he had down syndrome…seriously he has nothing on robert englund…wtfrench toast???? cumm on now they could’ve done waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay better with his make-up or something and his voice…not to freddy/scary…the movie wuz gud but tha new freddy suckked donkey ballz…very dissapointed with tha new freddy….pttttttttt!!! i bet robert englund iz shakin his head itz ok tho hell alwayz be freddy..nmw!!!!!! ROBERT U ROKK UR THA BEST!!!! NO 1 CANT B FREDDY LIKE U!!

  2. Mike says:

    Different take on Freddy compared to the original series (you’ll know it when you see it) but overall a good movie with a lot of references to the original movie (again you’ll know them when you see them). All I can say is if you like Freddy this is worth seeing.

  3. James Luna says:

    The new nightmare on elm street was a total bomb. “Freddie” was nowhere close to anything that could even be considered scary. My advice to people,wait until it comes out on video. Don’t waste your money buying it;RENT it. Go to RED BOX you will only waste a dollar.

  4. Mike says:

    I knew as soon as I saw the makeup for the first time (Months before the move came out) that I wasn’t going to like it….not to mention I didn’t expect much anyway….and I was right.

    I thought the Jackie was a terrible choice. I thought his voice was terrible, his height was comical, and the makeup made him look like an Alien.

    The plot was also stupid…you can’t just go and change things like the original story, no to mention character names.

    The new film is all computer animated graphics that make the film look stupid. The so called “Scary scenes” were comical, at best.

    This movie, like I knew it would be, was terrible, and I hope it continues to fail so there won’t be a sequel.

    Next time, try sticking with the guy that made the series what it is.

  5. Parabolee says:

    As long time Nightmare fan, I cannot even begin to undertand how anyone did not like this new movie!

    Haley was fantastic as Freddy (although a little on the short side), and the movie was easily the best entry in the series not directed by Wes Craven!

    Anyone saying it was bad because Freddy’s face was different is being a nit picky “purist” for no reason. Who cares! He looked burnt, he looked scary and he looked better than at least 5 of the previous movies (the ones with the crappy rubber mask).

    Sure it had some minor flaws, but as horror movies goes I thought it was fantastic. And I thought Freddy was absolutely f***ing TERRIFYING!

    A million times better than the Halloween remakes!

  6. Mike says:

    Parabolee- How come the movie has bombed so far, with nearly ever critic crucifying it?

    There must be a lot of “nit picking purists” out there. LOL

    I’m out of here, like the people walking out on this movie.

  7. Chris says:

    I have no idea how any fellow fanatic hated it. If you go into this movie comparing the two, of course you’re going to hate it. Nothing will ever compare to the original. I went into with an open mind. As a hardcore fan of the franchise and I was more that pleased.

    I thought Jackie was great. I like they way they made you feel sympathy for Freddy for much of the movie. I liked how they were able to have the characters dream whilst still being awake. Creating more of a shock factor.

    The only things I didn’t like were exact remakes of certain ‘classic’ scenes and I didn’t like the constant current scare tactics . . . you know? When it’s just silent for a long time till they scare the hell outta you?

    But those were just small things.

    Overall, I loved it and want more!

  8. Melinda says:

    Yea, I watched it and it was hard to keep from falling asleep. I found myself bored and not scared through most of it. I thought it was complete garbage and i’m really not just saying that because I refuse to give it a chance. It’s a very badly made movie. Before watching it, I knew it would be like Platinum Dunes’ other films and I was right. It’s a lot like their other films. I hate the cheap style they use to try and scare their audience. I hated Rob Zombie’s Halloween remake and I think that was even better than the Nightmare Remake. First of all I really hated that most of the character’s names were different from the original. I hated that the victims were all played by young, good looking people that couldn’t act worth shit. I did not like how they used elements from other Nightmare films in the series since it was supposed to be a remake of the original. The CGI effects were utterly horrible (especially when Freddy comes out of the wall above Nancy’s bed). I honestly didn’t care who lived or died in this and I think it’s a lot more effective when there’s at least a few characters you feel sorry for. I’d only give this movie 1 out of 5 stars. I agree with most of the reviews on it. It bombed just like I thought it would. I hated how they used a lot of cheap jump scares (which none of them made me jump anyway). In fact, the movie just made me wanna go to sleep and I did sleep pretty well after watching it so it totally had no purpose whatsoever. Their version of Freddy was so different and not in a good way. I thought he kinda sounded like Batman which is not how Freddy Krueger should be. Jackie Earle Haley was just not right to play Freddy Krueger and it shows.

  9. rowads80 says:

    I consider myself a film buff and a big nightmare fan. Favs include the original, part 3, part4, and new nightmare.

    Now for this new remake with haley as Freddy, I just wasn’t buying it and think it was TERRIBLE casting. maybe it was the fact that ever time he spoke, all I could think of was the character he played in watchmen (which also sucked). I think the character’s name was rorshack (spelling?) in watchtower.

    The film had its scary moments but was extremely predictable.

    I see this as a failed opportunity to re-create the nightmare franchise to a new audience. I’m guessing the screenplay writers were familiar with the Freddy films or watched them just so they could write a screenplay for this new one, but I doubt any of them watched the original nightmare as a kid or they would know that what made the original so scary was that for most of the film, you didn’t even see Freddy’s face until the end of the film!

    The beauty of Wes Craven’s creation was that it was left to the imagination. When this new version of NOES begins, we get a full shot of what Freddy looks like so the mystery and imagination is gone for the rest of the film.

    The homages they made to the original were nice, but they came off as though the writers and directors were “doing homework”, sitting at home watching the originals and taking notes saying “gee…how can we make that scene better.”

    They should have been saying “how can we make this scarier or as scary as the original?”

    That’s what this film was missing. The scare factor that was captured in the original.

    It’s not an easy thing to remake a film classic like this, but it just felt like the writers half assed this screenplay and could have done MUCH better.

  10. Argo Cub says:

    I thought the film was very good,good storyline and i am glad they didn’t make it a fresh remake with the same characters.Jackie Earle Haley in my opinion did a damn good job at playing Freddy.I also liked the actress who played Nancy in this version.She comes off as innocent and Emo but shows that she cares for her friends who are dying off.The same as it was in the orig. I also loved the ended and it caught me off guard. Since then i have seen the movie twice and is looking forward to the dvd release and part 2(if they make it)

    I also liked how they paid homage to certain scenes like the bathtub and the Freddy coming thru the wall. That was cool.

  11. eugene n waggoner says:

    I Saw The Movie And I Did Not Like It The Story Lines Were Not GOOD The Acting Grade I Give It AN D BECAUSE THE VOICE OF FREDDIE WAS WAY OFF SORRY JACKIE BUT YOUR NOT FREDDIES REPLACEMENT YOUR STORY LINES WERE SO..SO BUT NOT GOOD ENOUGH TO TELL YOU THE TRUTH JACKIE I PLAY FREDDIE AT TRAIL OF TERROR IN SHOCKOPE MINNESOTA IF YOU WANT TO SEE HOW FREDDIE IS DONE THE RIGHTWAY COME SEE ME I WILL SCARE YOUR ASS ONE INCH OF YOUR LIFE COME AND SEE ME IF YOU DARE BUT I WARN YOU IAM GOING TOTAKE YOUR SOUL HA..HA..HA.HA WHATS THE MATTER YOUSCARED ALREADY THEY ARE BLOCKING MY EMAIL

  12. eugene n waggoner says:

    JACKIE LET ME TELL YOU SOME THING I MIGHT NOT BE AS GOOD AS ROBERT ENGLUND BUT I AM DAM CLOSE AND I KNOW ICOULD DO BETTER THAN YOU…LISTEN TO ME I HAVE BEEN DOING FREDDIE ACTING FOR 12YEARS AT STATEFAIRS AND HOLLWEENPARKS LIKE I SAID COME AND SEE FOR YOUR SELF BE READY BECAUSE I AM GOING TO TAKE YOUR SOUL MY FIRST YEAR THERE AT TRAIL OF TERROR I MADE A40 YEAR OLD MAN MESS HIS PANTS BECAUSE HE WAS TALKING TRASH ABOUT TRAIL OF TERROR LASTYEAR I MADE 16YEAR OLD CRY LIKE A LITTLE GIRL SHE ALSOMESSED HER PANTS.. YOU HAVE NOTHING ON ME..SEE AT TRAIL OF TERROR WE OPEN OCTOBER 8TH 2010 IWILL BE WAITING FOR YOU 7PM Til 2am IF YOU DONT SHOW UP I WILL KNOW YOU WERE SCARED LIKE A LITTLE GIRL….HA..HA..HA..HA

  13. I agree that the film was good. The visuals were great except the teriibly overused CGI. Jackie was a fantastic Freddy…although I feel that he just tried to be cynically witty sometimes and just missed the mark. He was also very mechanical. He went from Freddy Krueger with one heck of a personality and a knack for torture, to a typical horror slasher that could talk.

    And Rooney Mara was very bland throughout the ENTIRE movie, even before she was tired. She didnt fill out the role to its full potential. And I’m not going any further on that note…I might lose it!

    There were alot of “WTF? This is random” moments that tried to pay homage to the original but just seemed thrown in…alot of recycled old lines, and stupid jump scares! THATS NOT A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET…ANOES is known for it’s long moments of terror and clever imaginative thrills and chills. This, just didnt have that.

    I also felt there was a great deal of passion that was lacking in this film that came through with the original.

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  15. charley b says:

    you know what im one of the BIGGEST nightmare fans ever and the remake BLOWS!!!! i dont care who’s playing freddy it looks like the writes had a all night nightmare watch-a-thon and put every movie in one, DUNES!! STOP messing up good horror movies,wes should be weeping in his sleep after the crap. i will always be a fan but im not counting that movie. o dunes I HOPE YOU GO UNDER, ur movies blow and please for the love of god stop making remakes, does anyone have a brain out there, you cant come up with something new and that would scary someone??? i didnt think so, so if u got this movie burn it. if you like it you must be underage lmao . ROBERT dont let them mess up freddy’s rep like that, you own!

    the greatest nightmare fan
    Charley B