Eye For Film >> Movies >> Wes Craven's New Nightmare (1994) Blu-Ray Review
Wes Craven's New Nightmare
Reviewed by: James GraceyRead James Gracey's film review of Wes Craven's New Nightmare
Despite being the best entry in the Elm Street series, after the original of course, Wes Craven’s New Nightmare – a post-modern overhaul of the series complete with scathing commentary on Hollywood and chilling reflection on the nature of fear – has always been neglected when it comes to complimentary material and extra features. This release proves just as measly.
The good news is that while the bonus material is scarce, it’s all good stuff. First up is the wonderful commentary track, with optional subtitles, courtesy of writer/director Wes Craven. In his usual congenial manner, Craven provides a fascinating insight into his approach to filmmaking, his reasons for returning to the series and his desire to ‘take it to the next level’, as well as share nostalgic anecdotes and candid thoughts on horror cinema and the Elm Street series. His comments on how Freddy Krueger increasingly moved away from the sadistic and sleazy child killer of his original film, to become embraced by mainstream culture as a quick-witted jester, are particularly interesting.
Elsewhere, in several brief featurettes, Craven discusses his early career and attempts to become a filmmaker (Becoming A Filmmaker), his thoughts on horror cinema and how horror film directors have a responsibility to their audience to be as unpredictable as they can (An Insane Troupe), the affect of the original film on its cast and crew, New Nightmare’s genesis and topics such as censorship and how horror can be cathartic and help audiences deal with deeper issues (Two Worlds). In The Problem With Sequels Craven discusses, well, you’ve guessed it, his issues with the Elm Street sequels and how he hoped to return the series to its dark, adult-orientated tone with New Nightmare. Addressing the same themes he actually deals with in New Nightmare, such as violence in horror cinema and the condemnation of violent entertainment by conservative individuals, Craven discusses the cultural significance of cinema. He also looks back on his career, chats about the difference between art and business and reveals what he thinks his legacy will be. Too bad it’s only a five-minute chat. Rounding everything off is the theatrical trailer.Reviewed on: 31 Oct 2014