A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy’s Revenge

Slashing Through the Homophobia Surrounding 'A Nightmare on Elm Street 2' –  Madness Heart Press

A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy’s Revenge is one of the entries in the franchise that I’ve seen the least. I’ve only seen it two other times, though the first time I saw it I don’t necessarily remember seeing the rest of it at that time. There was a part that scared the absolute shit out of seven year old Michael. I remember seeing the part and immediately running out of my apartment at the time. Don’t remember closing the door or stopping the movie, just running as fast as I could away from where I was. There was one other movie that had such a visceral reaction to. I do remember the next time I watched it, the time I remember finishing the movie I didn’t much care for it. I hadn’t watched it in fifteen years at the very least. In the years since I watched it last there has been a change of discourse about the film.

A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy’s Revenge was directed by Jack Shoulder. It was written by David Chaskin. It stars Mark Patton Kim Myers, Robert Rusler, Clu Gulager, Hope Lange, and Robert Englund. Robert Englund returns as Freddy but he was given so much more to do because of his increased screen time. With the increased screen time comes increased character. This is the closest Freddy ever comes to an out and out sexual predator in any of the movies until the remake, where he is one. Mark Patton plays Jesse really well, especially when you view his performance as someone struggling with being in the closet. I do have a theory about the connection between Jesse and Freddy. Bob Shaye has a cameo, which I like to think his character comes back in Freddy vs Jason as principal of the school.

My theory about the connection between Jesse and Freddy and why its so strong is that Jesse has dream master abilities, he just doesn’t know it. That could explain what Freddy is able to do while in the real world while he is possessing Jesse’s body. That could also be why Freddy is able to enter the real world so easily through Jesse. Jesse’s lack of control of his powers could be from his struggles with his own identity and sexuality. I had that theory pop into my head while watching the movie.

The plot of A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy’s Revenge centers on Jesse as he moves into 1428 Elm Street, the same house as Nancy. Jesse struggles with the new school and dealing with Coach Schneider. During his dreams Freddy is there taunting him trying to possess him. Jesse starts sleepwalking and becomes possessed by Freddy and starts killing people starting with Coach Schneider. Lisa has a pool party and Jesse runs off after they make out. Jesse runs to Grady which leads to Grady being killed by Jesse while possessed by Freddy. Jesse runs back to Lisa’s house which leads to Freddy coming into the real world completely. This leads to Freddy causing mayhem at the pool party. Lisa is able to bring Jesse back and seemingly defeat Freddy. The movie ends like it began, with a nightmare of Freddy driving a bus into a desert. That is a poor synopsis, but you should watch the movie.

The special effects in the movie look great. Freddy looks melty in this movie, which is different than what he looked like in the first movie. His look is in flux because of them figuring out the best way to do makeup, but it works for the movies because he can look just a little different depending on the person he appears to. Christopher Young did the music for the movie. His score is great.

A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy’s Revenge is a lot better than some fans would lead you to believe. I’m glad that there was a change of discourse around the film. It really did deserve a reevaluation, and it led to an interesting documentary called Scream Queen: My Nightmare on Elm Street which was about Mark Patton and his career after the movie. I would give this movie eight Freddy gloves out of ten

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