Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare

We're finally gonna kill him now! This is it! This is the last one! Yes sirree!

Hahahaha…heh, sure it is.

Set in the “future” year of 1999, ten years have passed since the events of A Nightmare on Elm St. 5: The Dream Child (1989) and Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) has been busy. "John Doe" (Shon Greenblatt) is the last Springwood teen left, and the adults have gone bat-shit insane as a result.  John escapes Springwood only to be thrown into a youth shelter that employs Maggie Burroughs (Lisa Zane), who just happens to be Freddy’s long lost daughter!  Through Maggie, Freddy will be able to escape the confines of the population of Springwood’s dreamers and kill children everywhere!  Unless Maggie and Doc (Yaphet Kotto!) can stop him.

Looks like this is a job for 3-D glasses!

In directing what could theoretically have been the last Elm St. movie, Rachel Talalay did not make a horror film.  No, this is straight comedy.  Let’s take a look at our hero, Freddy Krueger.  Among other things, Freddy dresses as the Wicked Witch of the West , plays nightmare victim video games, rockets a house into space, prances around a deaf man, and sets up a bed of spikes like Wile E. Coyote .  Freddy has turned into Bugs Bunny, which, in its own way, is highly entertaining.  Scary?  Not in the least. But he's a lot of fun to watch.

One of the more fascinating aspects of the film is the townspeople of Springwood.  Living through the mysterious and violent deaths of all of their children has driven them quite mad. Making cameos as two of the hysterical parents are Roseanne and Tom Arnold !  Remember them?  Exactly. The town holds town fairs, conduct history classes and run orphanages as if the kids are still there, all the while terrified at the mere mention of Freddy’s name.  This was developed further to great effect in Freddy vs. Jason (2003) .

The climax of the film featured the much hyped 3-D sequence where the audience joins Maggie as she dons 3-D glasses to venture into Freddy’s head, go down memory lane,  pull Freddy out of the nightmare where he is vulnerable and then have the titanic battle between good and evil!  Those of you keeping score might recall that this was the entire plan in the original picture. Apparently, the step Nancy skipped was 3-D glasses.  Sigh.  The sequence was apparently designed by the same geniuses behind Friday the 13th: 3-D (1982), complete with pointless hand gestures toward the audience and random, creepy “Dream Demons” flying out of the screen.  Not being allowed to see the film in the theater, I hear it was... “exciting.”

As with everything else in the film, what starts with the promise of graphic violence ends with a joke.  After a mediocre fight between Freddy and Maggie,  Freddy’s (supposed) last word  (when facing his impending "death by pipe bomb imbedded in chest" is “Kids” right into the camera as he explodes into 3-D goo.  A lame ending for lackluster sequel.  The film works as a comedy but not as a horror flick and, mercifully, not as the last Nightmare on Elm Street film.   Though Alice Cooper’s turn as Freddy’s foster father and Johnny Depp’s heartfelt anti-drug PSA are entertaining.

Oh, and the Iggy Pop montage of the whole series over the credits is incredible.