Five years have passed since Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) was sent howling back to hell. But now, a new kid on Elm Street is being haunted every night by gruesome visions of the deadly dream stalker. And if his twisted soul takes possession of the boy’s body, Freddy will return from the dead to wreak bloody murder and mayhem upon the entire town. When “A Nightmare on Elm Street” made a killing, horror fans shrieked for more. Soon the diabolic Freddy was resurrected with a vengeance, along with some of the most terrifying special effects ever to splatter the screen. Look for Robert Englund minus his Freddy face in the opening sequence. He’s a real scream!
1985 – Certificate: 18 – USA
Rating Details: Strong violence and horror
I’ve often considered Boxing Day to be a sort of inferior sequel to Christmas Day. Well, okay, to tell the truth I’ve never actually thought that at all. In fact, until about two minutes ago the idea had never even crossed my mind. But there I was, sitting here and trying to think of something to write about this film and life in general and it just popped into my head. I lead such a dull and monotone existence that it’s not always easy to come up with interesting stuff to say on the spur of the moment; there’re only so many things I can comment on about the weather and the amount of e-mail I get at work. I did the washing-up about an hour ago, but that didn’t really give me the sort of emotional connection with the subject matter I was really looking for. I do wish I could learn to rinse up a glass after I’ve used it though, it would really reduce the amount of washing-up I need to do quite considerably; but I’ve never been one for doing that when there’s a clean supply in the cupboard ready for use. Even when I was young I was like this. I guess I was just a hardcore rebel, fighting the system, looking to piss off The Man, running through the dark streets at night, giving the finger to society; or maybe I was just lazy. Anyway, as I was saying, I’ve often considered Boxing Day to be a sort of sequel to Christmas Day; and all I really wanted to point out is that sequels are generally not as good as the originals, which is a bit like Boxing Day and Christmas Day. Which brings us to this film.
Freddy’s revenge eh? Sounds like serious stuff and to be fair at this point in the franchise Freddy was still the evil ne’er-do-well he started out as in the first movie; his later penchant for clever one-liners had yet to really take hold. Trouble is, he spends most of this film trying to physically escape from inside some young lad, rather than terrorising loads of teens. True, he does take time out to turn up at a party and trash it, but most of the time he’s inside rather confused teen Jesse. Then again, this is the gay Nightmare movie, so it’s perhaps not so surprising after all. If you view the film from this prospective it makes a lot more sense; if you’ve never done that, try it and see. (By which I mean watching the film; I’m not suggesting everyone goes out and has a homosexual experience just so they can understand this film better, although if you want that’s fine too.) I did quite enjoy the school bus scene the beginning, which does a clever job of turning a normal trip on a bus into a, em, nightmare one. Then again, I could have just as much ‘fun’, albeit at a far lower speed, travelling on a Night Bus in London in the early hours of a Saturday morning. All in all it’s a pretty average film, but the two main characters are quite engaging in their own way and I suppose you have to respect the makers for trying a slightly different angle this time around. And it does have Fred Krueger in it of course.
Recommended for those that watched “A Nightmare on Elm Street”, obviously.
1 cat, no chainsaws or decapitations. Well I think it’s a cat but it’s not a very nice cat. I guess it suits Freddy though; I can’t really imagine him playing nicely with a cute kitten.
Top badass moment? It has to be Lisa Webber driving to the old steelworks in the middle of the night, to confront Freddie and rescue her crush Jessie. Not only is this a completely stupid thing to do under any circumstances, but he’s already told her he’s killed two people, including a mutual friend, whilst standing in front of her covered in blood; he’s also tried to kill her too, he’s trashed her home and when she tried to make out with him he wasn’t even into it. That’s true friendship for you and friendship is badass.
I hate the way big manufacturers make it as difficult as possible for the plebs (i.e. the rest of us) to dissect what they do, what they tell us and what they sell us. Today I wasted 45 minutes trying to find out what colour white a Vauxhall Astra van at work is, so I could go and buy some paint and repair a couple of dents in it; about an hour’s work for me but probably £500 worth of work if it was done by a garage. You’d think this would be easy to do, but after three quarters of an hour spent Googling things and searching for various stickers and plates all over the place, and studying the ridiculous codes they put all over them, I was none the wiser. Why don’t they just put the name of the colour on the vehicle plate? Casablanca White anyone, rather than Z354 or whatever it’s going to turn out to be in the end? This is simply bollocks designed to make it more difficult for people to do something that ought to be very simple, so that we give up and pay someone a shed load of money to do something we could do ourselves. I’m all for convenience and don’t mind paying for it at times, but I want the option of deciding when and where I do so; I don’t want to be forced into it by some greedy corporate asshole, who’s not half as clever as he thinks (and they nearly always are “hes”). I shouldn’t need to emulate Sherlock Homes in an effort to find out a basic bit of information. It’s a shit combination of crappy marketing and nefarious corporate shenanigans, which has the sole purpose of making the rest of us spend more of our money than necessary on their overpriced tat. How many versions of white do we even need anyway? I think I’ll just go and buy a huge tin of magnolia emulsion instead and paint every single vehicle I ever come across in my life, it would be a lot easier and quicker. This movie features a kitchen that gets painted blue, everywhere. I’ve no idea what shade of blue that was either.
1985 – Certificate: 12 – USA
Despite myself I enjoyed this film. It even made me laugh out loud a few times. I’m not sure why, maybe it’s my geek side trying to exert itself? It’s full of plot holes, but then again the latter is so ridiculous that it doesn’t matter than much anyway. What it does do is give us a couple of ‘failures’ to follow, a ‘perfect woman’ to lust after and a set of stupidly stupid opponents for said failures and woman to overcome. Of course, in the end everyone comes out of it a better person and they all (metaphorically) ride off into the sunset together, happy in the notion that they’ve made the world a slightly better place. It sounds dreadful, but its redeeming features are that it is actually pretty funny, the characters are for the most part likable (even the bad ones) and it’s entertaining. It’s also a horrible reminder of how tacky the 80s were, so the feeling of relief at the end when you remember it’s really 2012, is palpable. (Until of course you remember all the things you don’t like about 2012 too).
Recommended for anyone who’s under the illusion that the 80s were anything more than superficial rubbish, or who lived through them the first time around and wants to be reminded. (Why, for God’s sake?) Also highly recommend as an educational tool to demonstrate to people that life existed before Twitter, Facebook and uploading hilarious videos to YouTube of their drunk friends tripping over. (Things where so much more innocent in those days, he thinks wistfully…)
No cats, decapitations or chainsaws.
Top badass moment? Listen, if you really could create your own ‘perfect woman’ with an old computer, a ‘floppy’ floppy disk and a narrowband connection, I’d be doing it right now rather than writing this. If it was possible, it would be way off the badass scale.
I returned to work today after two weeks off. 336 e-mails awaited my attention. Not only that, but every time I did anything with any of them my copy of Outlook produced millions (well okay one each time then) of dialogue boxes screaming a warning at me that my mailbox was 95% full. (Thanks Bill, just one at the start of the day would have been fine.) Bloody Hell, it’s not the 3 Minute Warning, it’s just a bit of space on a hard drive somewhere, not a virus of “28 Days Later” proportions. What an overreaction it all was; I can’t stand anyone that exaggerates things. So anyway, I had in mind to now go and make a connection between this film and my hellish day on the frontline in the e-mail war zone, but somehow I can’t bring myself to do so; it’s just too much of a serious movie to trivialise it in that way.
1985 – Certificate: 15 – Soviet Union
Rating Details: Strong violence and holocaust footage
This is a bleak, bleak film. It starts off pretty depressing and then goes downhill. Take a trip alongside a youngster called Florya Gaishun, who proudly joins the Belarusian partisans (the local resistance movement) during the Second World War and slowly changes before our eyes into an aged, half-deaf, psychotic teenager, over a period of one summer. Yes, it really is as much fun as it sounds. Made in the Soviet Union in 1985, it does at times have the feel of a propaganda film, except that in those, the ‘good guys’ are normally seen as happy, courageous and generally over-achieving. In this they simply seem wretched, whilst the Nazis come across as Hell on Earth, destroying villages, stealing everything, murdering children and raping woman, whilst taking a lot of pleasure in doing so. It takes a bit of time to get going too (it’s 137 minutes long) and I found some of the editing a bit confusing, as the passage of time wasn’t always easy to gauge. It’s not Hollywood so there’re no heroes in this film. Kudos to the actors for some of what they had to go through too, wading through bogs, being shot at with live ammunition and generally having to run away from explosions and stuff. The acting, especially from the lead character, is top draw stuff. I was a bit uncomfortable about the scenes that involved some of the horses or the cow in them though; it looked a bit too much like they were being treated in entirely inappropriate ways; it might look realistic, but there’s no way that sort of thing is acceptable in a film. This isn’t an especially gory movie, it doesn’t need to be. However much gross horror and torture porn I watch, it’s films that’re based on reality that I find the most horrific. This is one of those. If you need convincing that war isn’t much fun and isn’t something you’d want to get involved with, here’s a good place to start. Probably one of the best war films ever made. It’s not exactly what you’d call entertaining, but it’s the sort of movie that ought to be seen.
Recommended for anyone that’s had a bad day and wants to put it in prospective.
No cats and no decapitations.
Top badass moment? I’m not sure about this film, but anyone who lived through the sort of things depicted in it and managed to keep a sense of proportion in their lives afterwards, is totally badass.