Schlocktoberfest XI – Day 19: A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors

SchlocktoberfestXI

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors (1987)

Trailer:

*Spoilers Throughout*

 

What‘s This About: Some fella named Frederick Krueger is stalking children in their dreams. These new crop of victimized teens have harnessed their dream powers to enhance their abilities to fight off Mr. Krueger. Nancy Thompson, an old friend of Frederick has returned to help the kids at their mental institution.

Here are some of my observations as I watched the film:

  • Any movie that opens with a poignant quote from Edgar Allan Poe is either awesome or setting themselves up for failure.
  • Great score so far by Angelo Badalementi. Forgot how good it was. 
  • Screenplay by Wes Craven & Frank Darabont. See? It’s like they saw the abomination that was Part 2 and said “OK you idiots, step away from the franchise, we‘re taking it back before you totally ruin it.” That‘s a direct quote.
  • I forgot Dokken had TWO songs on the soundtrack.
  • Kristen’s mom has a “guest” over at 1:00 AM. I hope Kristen knows her mom’s totally getting the ol’ in-out tonight?
  • “Where do you keep the bourbon?” I would first check the bar Kristen’s gentleman guest.
  • I like the point this film and subsequent films make about the fact that Freddy exists and has strength to terrorize these kids in their dreams because they keep thinking of him. Kristen makes a papier-mâché model of Nancy’s old house because she dreams of it, thus continuing the vicious cycle of making him exist.
  • Where did the “One Two Freddy’s coming for you” come from exactly? Did kids who were terrorized write that rhyme? How long was Freddy kidnapping and killing kids for them to make that song up?
  • I really wish the subsequent films didn’t make Freddy funny. He only really works as a sadistic predator.
  • That is one loud ticking clock.
  • Man, the special effects in this film is far and above the second one. Not only do they look better but they are more creative as well.
  • Morpheus!
  • So since Freddy “made” Kristen slit her wrists, she is confined to a mental institution because her mom knows she’s disturbed but also now “suicidal.” This movie actually takes install seriously and is a very worthy installment to the original. The other films were more formulaic and try to act like the original with teens in high school having issues. This one at least is in a different location. I know the 5th one tried to be creative with a Freddy baby but we all know how that turned out.
  • I always had a serious crush on Heather Langencamp. I even watched that sitcom she was in with the 10 kids just because of her. I always wished she had a better career.
  • A kid cut off his own eyelids to stay awake. Man that’s brutal yet a great detail to the trauma these kids endure with Freddy.
  • I forgot about the ghost nun that helps the psych doctor played by Craig Wasson.
  • Kristen’s mom is such a bitch. I forgot how much of a rotten mother she was.
  • She’s so rotten that when the servant she calls to grab Kristen’s things for Nancy to bring to the hospital, Nancy than volunteers. Mrs. Parker won’t lift a damned finger to help!
  • Kristen is frightened by a snarling roasted pig on a platter in Freddy’s dining room. A simple and effective scare. Not over the top, other than why Freddy would have a full roast pig for dinner.
  • Phallic Freddy!

Nom Nom Nom

  • I always loved how Freddy said “You” to Nancy.
  • She then says “Oh my God.” Like she was expecting someone else though and just realized it was Freddy. But with the papier-mâché house and Dr. Gordon telling her they all experience nightmares with a common boogeyman, you would think she would piece the puzzle together. Or the very least suspect the worse.
  • I really appreciate that this film explains the powers or reasons why and how the Dream Warriors can do what they do. Kristen says she was always able to pull her dad into her dreams when she was younger but it stopped after her parents divorced. Nice back story makes the film more fleshed out. Unlike some crap out there. 
  • However, since the ending is so dull and uncreative, Kristen should’ve brought her dad in to save the day somehow. That would’ve been a nice touch and give the film some foreshadowing. It’s kinda like in Friday the 13th Part VII when Tina brings her dad back to life to pull Jason in the lake but this makes actual sense.
  • Nice touch that Will is in a wheelchair because he’s paralyzed now after his jumping suicide attempt. Man, these characters really express their mental pain. I am amazed watching this this again after so many years in how well written it is.
  • How conceited and pompous is Jennifer, within minutes of meeting in a mental asylum, that she proclaims she’s going to be an actress once she gets out of the facility?
  • There’s actually logic in this slasher film?!?!
  • Craig Wasson is not my favorite actor. Nope. Not even a little bit.
  • “Great. Now it’s my dick that’s killing me.” Hahahaha. Kincaid must’ve seen Welcome Home Brother Charles.
  • Why couldn’t this film secure the rights to use Dungeons and Dragons?
  • How is mute Joey playing D&D when Will forces Taryn say the “magic words” for her move to count?
  • What’s the point of Phillip’s marionette puppet becoming Freddy if Freddy is just going to appear to Phillip normal sized in a few moments time? And Phillip was asleep and unaware of his puppet becoming Freddy so it was just for we the audience to see a cool claymation effect. Which probably cost a lot of money to make. 

Pull da string! Pull da string!

  • However, the puppet master scene is better than the whole Puppet Master movie franchise combined!
  • Wait a minute! How did Philip walk through a locked door like he’s Kitty Pryde? In reality he’s sleepwalking controlled in a dream by Freddy but him going through solid matter doesn’t make a lick of sense.
  • The only real complaint I have so far is why is Freddy killing these kids now? They all have dreamt of him before but never has he killed them. But now he’s able to when they’re in a hospital? If they explained that the kids were now off special medication to help their sleeping which made them more susceptible and weaker for Freddy than that would make more sense.
  • Jennifer, the hopeful TV star, is watching the classic movie Critters! She bullshits Laurence Fishburne and says she’s watching it for “research.”
  • This is one creepy orderly. Not only is he waiting for under-aged Taryn outside the restroom but he makes sexual advances and tries to get her high when she’s a recovering junkie.
  • I can’t stand Dick Cavett.
  • Although I just saw this on imdb trivia and I really hope it’s true because it makes me like him a little bit: For the dream sequence, in which a Dick Cavett interview is interrupted by Freddy Krueger, Sally Kellerman was originally in the script as the guest, but Cavett was then allowed to pick the person he’d be interviewing. He picked Zsa Zsa Gabor, because he thought she was the dumbest person he’d ever met in his life, and he’d never have her on his show in real life. So, if there was one person he’d want to see killed by Freddy, it would be her.
  • It’s too bad that Freddy’s kills don’t always appear to look like accidents like sleepwalking Philip. Because when some young short girl slams her head into a mounted TV set, it’s going to raise a few questions. I mean, the TV was a full foot and half taller than Jennifer and there was nothing underneath her for her stand on to ram her own head in the TV. It‘s physically impossible for her to die that way and look like a suicide.

  • I always thought the ghost nun was just as creepy and unnerving as Freddy is. Not sure if that was the film’s intent or not. She‘s up there with Reverand Kane in Poltergeist TWO!
  • If only if this film could’ve done better than Craig Wasson. Than it would unarguably be better than the original.
  • Without looking thinking about it too much, between this film and the original there had to be about a dozen teens that are supposedly the kids of the vigilante mob that killed Freddy. That’s a lot of people who all agreed to take the law into their own hands. And did all these people who killed him have children who Freddy abused and killed? Because that would imply that these teens had younger siblings that died and it’s never mentioned. Like why exactly did Nancy’s mom go and kill Freddy if she didn’t have a kid who was a victim? I understand they were upset at having a known child murderer in their town that somehow escaped justice but it’s a bit of a reach to have so many people be vigilantes. I feel like the Nightmare movies could’ve went more into this aspect. Would be more interesting than a Freddy baby.
  • Another thing the Nightmare movies don’t delve into more is the “wet dream” like he does with Joey. I think there’s another one with Joey in Part 4 but again it’s Joey‘s wet dream. Freddy could easily kill every teenage boy just by having them have a sex dream.  
  • Will’s power in his dreams is magic and he calls himself the “Wizard Master.” Doesn’t that mean he controls wizards?
  • Taryn’s punk rocker look was outdated by the time this flick came out.
  • I don’t know how old Joey is but I think that nurse is going to statutory rape him.
  • Bewbs!! And a thong! I never noticed the thong so much growing up because this was the only scene in the movie my mom made me cover my eyes for. Not the phallic Freddy eating a girl. Not the scene where four of Phillips arteries get ripped out of his limbs and he becomes a marionette puppet. Nope. The bare breasted nurse was a no-no.
  • How many tongues does this nurse have?!
  • They just noticed Joey was missing?!
  • Isn’t knowing you’re in a dream negate the effects the dream tries to put you through? If you know you’re in a dream that makes you more powerful. They all should know it’s all subconscious imagination.
  • How did Freddy put Joey in a coma? Actually more importantly why did he put Joey in a coma and not just kill him? It’s implied later on that it was to bait or lure the other kids and Nancy to confront him but does he really need to lure them since he has the dream power? 
  • This monologue by the ghost nun is decently written for a slasher flick. “Purgatory. Fashioned by the hands of men. Twisted, lonely souls. The worst of the criminally insane were locked up in here like animals.”

We‘re on a mission from God

  • Raped hundreds of times?! Yikes! How does one survive something like that?
  • And how exactly is Freddy able to slice words onto Joey’s abdomen without hurting him? Is Nancy dreaming this?
  • According to imdb trivia, this film takes place in 1990. Which makes sense considering this movie was made only 3 years after the original, making Nancy only 21 or so if she was a senior in the original and thus still being a college student and not being really qualified to be a medical expert in this field. However, that means that every other flick is also set in the future since the next one features Kristen. The Friday the 13th movies also has a weird continuity as well. 
  • Good ol’ John Saxon.
  • The blues music in this bar scene is very generic and makes the bar feel like a sleazy strip club.
  • How did John Saxon not kick the crap out of Craig Wasson after he assaulted him like that? Saxon is still a cop too.
  • And Saxon seemed very drunk while at the bar. Why is he driving?!
  • Using holy water against Freddy seems weak and unimaginative if you stop and think about it.
  • This is the second feature this month that had a main character go in a church to steal a crucifix and get caught by a priest.
  • After Saxon opens the auto salvage gate he says that Freddy’s remains are “deep in the heart of the place. Take it slow.” Why do they need to go slow? Is he afraid that Freddy will hear the car approaching?
  • This is pretty irresponsible of Nancy to recruit the rest of the teens to go into the dreamworld to save Kristen and confront Freddy. I know she says that they have a choice and warns them that they may die for real but still.
  • Is hypnotism really this easy?
  • I forgot about the severed head of Mrs. Parker yelling at Kristen about her ruining her sexual exploits. It’s hilarious. And even though it’s played for laughs it’s still better than the cheesy puns that Freddy is known for in the subsequent films.
  • If Taryn is a knife expert in her dream warrior phase, you’d think she’d pack larger knives to counteract Freddy’s finger knives at least.
  • I forgot about Taryn’s heroin needle holes acting like little fish mouths waiting for Freddy’s drug injection. Cool effect.

  • Freddy’s voice keeps changing for some reason. 
  • Did Freddy just quote Aerosmith?
  • Dumb geek quotes his silly D&D rip-off game before shooting Freddy with his magic beams. Then, when he got Freddy all confused and possibly in pain with the beams he stupidly runs toward Freddy and he gets himself easily killed. Probably the lamest and simplest kill in the movie when Freddy just stabs him in the chest.
  • This is the second time Kincaid has said something in a rhyme. Was Roadblock from GI Joe an inspiration?
  • When did Wasson have time to get a shovel?
  • If Freddy was burned alive by the angry Elm Street mob wouldn’t his bones burn to ash as well?
  • Saxon hid Freddy’s bones under the hood of a Cadillac?! Why didn’t he just bury it?! And what if the auto salvage yard owner happened to find it? Saxon is a cop, you’d think he’d have a better place to dispose of a body.
  • I know Nancy wants to save Joey but did forget that Freddy could only be hurt if she pulls him into the real world?
  • I always liked the souls of the children effect on Freddy’s chest. It looks great and I especially like the drool dripping out one of the screaming kid’s mouth.
  • How is Freddy able to control cars in the real world? He should have zero power in the real world. I highly doubt Wasson and Saxon are asleep while they are shoveling. And how are these cars‘ lights still working if they are junk cars?
  • And I can see him controlling his skeleton but why would the skeleton have his knife glove? In the original, Nancy’s mom had the glove in her furnace and showed Nancy.
  • Saxon lasts all of 5 seconds fighting Freddy Harryhausen Skeleton.

  • And wouldn’t it be better if Freddy fled the scene so they can’t bury the bones in the chance that they actually defeat him. The whole auto salvage yard is one giant dark maze, it would be cool to see him jerk them around in a cat-&-mouse/hide and seek game.
  • Is Joey a banshee or siren? His Dream Warrior power is screaming really loud!
  • Why would they think that mirrored images of Freddy that shatter be his death? They celebrate way too easily.
  • I always hated this sparkling John Saxon entering the dream part to fool Nancy. So dumb and silly. And besides, it should be Kristen’s dad like I mentioned earlier. They could still kill Nancy when she sacrifices herself in an attempt to save Kristen. Not only would it be more dramatic but also more heroic than her getting fooled thinking her dad was in the dream.
  • Also, I feel they really wasted Nancy in this film. She was the one who outwitted Freddy and figured out how to defeat him in the original and in this sequel she‘s useless and does nothing to give these new teens an advantage against him. Why did she never tell them that ion they bring him out to the real world that he was vulnerable and less powerful against them? Was she banking on the Wizard Master and Hulk Kincaid to use their superpowers to defeat him instead? 
  • She kinda heroically grabs Freddy and stabs himself with his own glove but I like my other idea better.
  • Freddy’s actual death was weaker than I remember. Wasson drops the skeleton into the grave, he throws 2 splashes of holy water on him plus a crucifix which make Freddy implode with a bright light. And that’s about it.
  • I know Kristen like Nancy enough to be sad but her being this sad for someone she just met a few days ago is a little too much.
  • Fucking idiot Wasson just realized that ghost nun was Freddy’s mother. What a fucking dolt.

Was it Entertaining:

Final Thoughts: I‘ll admit that picking one of the best horror sequels to one of the most beloved horror franchises is a bit out of range for us here for Schlocktoberfest but I had watched parts 3, 4, and 5 back in 2014 but sat on the notes all this time and wanted to actually use them. Besides parts 4 and 5 are not nearly as good as you may remember them if you grew up in the 80s and haven‘t seen them in a while like me. But I think we‘re entitled to watch a decent flick once in awhile. After 10 years of watching junk we earned it. Plus I still nitpicked it to death anyway. It was actually nice seeing this sequel again though and how well crafted it was. The special effects still hold up nicely and the story is far and above better than any of the others since the original. This was before Freddy had cameos in rap songs and had toys marketed to kindergartners and was still a terrifying supernatural serial killer and not a wise-cracking lovable one. If you haven’t seen this in a long while and remembered you liked it back then, then I think you‘ll be pleasantly surprised at how well it still holds up. I, for one, was delighted and amazed at how much better it was than I recalled.

Score: 9 Zsa Zsa Gabors (out of 10)

9 thoughts on “Schlocktoberfest XI – Day 19: A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors

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