A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

Taglines: Welcome to your nightmare.

On Elm Street, Nancy Thompson and a group of her friends including Tina Gray, Rod Lane and Glen Lantz are being tormented by a clawed killer in their dreams named Freddy Krueger. Nancy must think quickly, as Freddy tries to pick off his victims one by one. When he has you in your sleep, who is there to save you?

A Nightmare on Elm Street is a 1984 American supernatural slasher film written and directed by Wes Craven, and the first film of the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. The film stars Heather Langenkamp, John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Amanda Wyss, Jsu Garcia, Robert Englund, and Johnny Depp in his feature film debut. The plot revolves around several teenagers who are stalked and killed in their dreams (and thus killed in reality) by Freddy Krueger. The teenagers are unaware of the cause of this strange phenomenon, but their parents hold a dark secret from long ago.

Craven filmed A Nightmare on Elm Street on an estimated budget of $1.8 million, a sum the film earned back during its first week. The film went on to gross over $25 million at the United States box office. A Nightmare on Elm Street was met with rave critical reviews and went on to make a very significant impact on the horror genre, spawning a franchise consisting of a line of sequels, a television series, a crossover with Friday the 13th, beyond various other works of imitation; a remake of the same name was released in 2010.

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

About the Story

Tina Gray, a teenager, is stalked through a boiler room and attacked by a disfigured man wearing a blade-fixed glove. She awakens from the nightmare, but her mother points out four mysterious slashes in her nightgown.

The following morning, Tina is consoled by her best friend Nancy Thompson and her boyfriend Glen Lantz. Later, Nancy and Glen sleep at Tina’s following her mother’s out-of-town departure; the sleepover is interrupted by Tina’s boyfriend Rod Lane. Falling asleep, Tina sees the man and runs. Awakened by Tina’s thrashing, Rod witnesses her being fatally slashed by an unseen force. He flees as Nancy and Glen find Tina, mistakenly blaming Rod. Nancy tells her father, Lieutenant Don Thompson, of Tina’s death.

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) - Heather Langenkamp

The next day, Rod is arrested by Don, despite his pleas of innocence. At school, Nancy falls asleep in class and finds the man, calling himself Freddy Krueger, chasing her in the boiler room. Nancy burns her arm on a pipe and then awakens. She notices the burn mark on her arm and is concerned. At home, Nancy falls asleep in the bathtub and nearly gets drowned by Freddy. Nancy goes to Rod, who tells her what happened to Tina, and Nancy believes Freddy is responsible for Tina’s death.

Nancy has Glen watch over her as she falls asleep. She tries to find Freddy and sees him preparing to kill Rod. He turns his attention on her; she runs and wakes up when her alarm clock goes off. Nancy and Glen go to the jail and discover Rod dead in his cell in an apparent suicide. At Rod’s funeral, Nancy’s parents become worried when she describes the man in her dreams. Her mother Marge takes her to a dream clinic. In her dream, Nancy is attacked again and grabs Freddy’s hat. When the staff wake her up, she has a gash in her arm and Freddy’s hat in her possession.

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

At home, Marge bars the windows and begins drinking heavily. She tells Nancy that Freddy was a child murderer released on a technicality. In a form of vigilante justice, the parents in the neighborhood burned him alive. Realizing that Freddy desires revenge, Nancy convinces Glen to help her. She plans to take Freddy into the real world, and sets up booby traps in her house. Concerned over her influence, Glen’s parents prevent the two from meeting. Glen falls asleep at their appointed hour, and Freddy kills him and releases his blood in a large fountain in his room, which is witnessed by Glen’s mother.

Alone, Nancy puts Marge to bed and asks Don, who is across the street, to break into the house in twenty minutes. In her sleep, she locates Freddy at the last second and pulls him out of the dream. In the real world, Nancy runs from Freddy, who trips on the booby traps. She lights him on fire, locks him in the basement, and rushes to the door for help. The police arrive, and they realize Freddy has escaped the basement. In Marge’s bedroom, they see a still-burning Freddy smother her. After Don puts out the fire, Freddy and Marge have vanished. Despite her father’s words, Nancy believes she is still in danger.

A Nightmare on Elm Street Movie Poster (1984)

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

Directed by: Wes Craven
Starring: Heather Langenkamp, Johnny Depp, Robert Englund, Amanda Wyss, Lin Shaye, Mimi Craven, Joseph Whipp, Sandy Lipton, Joe Unger
Screenplay by: Wes Craven
Production Design by: Gregg Fonseca
Cinematography by: Jacques Haitkin
Film Editing by: Patrick McMahon, Rick Shaine
Costume Design by: Dana Lyman
Set Decoration by: Anne H. Ahrens
Music by: Charles Bernstein
Distributed by: New Line Cinema
Release Date: November 9, 1984