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Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
18
Cast
Mark Patton
Robert Englund
Kim Myers
Robert Rusler
Clu Gulager
Hope Lange.
Directors
Jack Sholder.
Screenwriters
David Chaskin.
Running Time
81 minutes

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A Nightmare On Elm Street, Part 2: Freddy’s Revenge
Very poor sequel.


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Plot
Jesse Walsh, the new kid on Elm Street, is troubled by dreams of ghost-murderer Freddy Krueger, who is scheming to get back into the real world through Jesse’s body.


Review

This hastily-produced sequel ignores the dreamstalking premise that had made A Nightmare on Elm Street successful and reverts to the overfamiliar possession story. 
 
There are clichés a-plenty, from the slow, low tracking shot past the ominously illuminated house that marks it out as ‘a bad place’ to the ludicrous finale in which the heroine defeats the monster by repeatedly and bathetically declaring her love for the drippy hero.
 
Robert Englund’s Freddy begins his sad transformation from most fearsome bogeyman of the 1980s into a wisecracking goon, too often stepping out of the shadows to deliver punchlines while clacking his fingerknives. 
 
Director Jack Sholder (The Hidden) delivers a lot of would-be scary idiocies: an exploding budgie (!), sports equipment with a mind of its own, human-headed dogs and (as was common in the ‘80s) the monster emerging from the rubbery ruins of its host’s flesh. 
 
Clu Gulager and Hope Lange have the thankless roles of the stupid parents who keep denying that there’s anything wrong – and, in a strange kind of way, the film seems to be an allegory for Jesse’s sexual confusion, as he repeatedly turns away from the willing girl to get close to half-naked guys (including the monster).
 
 Lest the movie be accused of sensitivity, it also has the bullying gay gym teacher (Marshall Bell) tied up naked in the showers and whipped by possessed hoses. 
 
The subsequent sequels, starting with A Nightmare on Elm Street, Part 3: Dream Warriors, ignored this film and went back to Wes Craven’s playbook, though that didn’t stop the series running out of steam by Part Five or Six …


Verdict
Possibly the lamest of all the sequels, although Five and Six later set the bar particularly low.


Reviewed by Kim Newman

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for A Nightmare On Elm Street, Part 2: Freddy’s Revenge
Empire Star Rating

Better than you give it credit for

This film is definately not a one star. Although its not as good as 1,3,4 or 7, its certainly better than 5 and 6. Although it does have the homoerotic subtext and Jesse is undoubtably the worst lead, in this Freddy is still dark and evil, as proven by the opening bus scene, and the scenes where he reveals his brain, manifests through the body of that guy and where he gatcrashes the party. Its better than your review suggests ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by mab at 10:07, 31 August 2009 | Report This Post


decent

better than some sequels but a foot note compared with the origional wes craven masterpiece which is in my top 5 horror movies list. this on is better than parts 5 and 6 which are the most ridiculous but are probably more entertaining than recent horror outings (captivity,the fog(2005),hostel) and the franchises second outing is good in its execution but NOT one of the best sequels however it is quite fun and freddy still steals the film and isnt as slapstick as the latter films (minus new nigh... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by joshpinder at 17:55, 30 December 2007 | Report This Post


A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddys Revenge

I watched this film again recently, and whilst not in the same league as the original, this is one of the better sequels in the series. I disagree with many critics who say that this is the film that turned Freddy into a wisecracking loon. I actually thought he was as warped and nasty in this as he was in part one. (witness the moment he peels the skin from his scalp and reveals a pulsating brain). There are some good moments in this for fans of the series, such as the opening bus ride. Also som... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by zombiewarehouse at 19:11, 06 March 2007 | Report This Post


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