10/07/2022

A Nightmare on Elm Street : Why The World Still Loves The Springwood Slasher

Just what is the fascination with Ol' Pizza face?

Why The World Still Loves The Springwood Slasher

“A Nightmare on Elm Street”, is a certified cinematic classic. Not only is it widely considered to be one of the greatest horror films ever made, but one of the best films ever made.

Empire Magazine ranked A Nightmare on Elm Street 162nd on their list of the 500 greatest movies of all time, and it made the cut of the 1000 greatest films ever made when The New York Times published their ranking.

Since the original was released all the way back in 1984, the film has birthed 7 sequels and a remake, which have collectively grossed over $750 million USD at the worldwide box office!

But why is this? Why do movie-goers love this franchise so much? And how is it still thriving today, despite the last entry in the series being released a decade ago? 

It’s All Thanks to the Original…

 

We mentioned earlier that since the release of the first film in 1984, there have been 7 sequels and a reboot. Now you may be thinking,” Well that must be why the franchise is still going strong, right? Well, not exactly…

Financially, only two of the 8 films that followed the original grossed more than the first; and the critical response wasn’t much better, as none of the sequels have managed to receive a higher score on Rotten Tomatoes or Metacritic than the 1984 original. The Horror genre is notorious for pumping out soulless cash-grabs that they know people will go and see just for a cheap thrill on a date night or quiet Halloween, and it seems like the nightmare on Elm Street franchise is no different. So why do people still adore these films? Well, it’s all thanks to the one that started it all.

The 1984 film has a timeless feel to it. It’s clear to see that a lot of heart and effort was put into the film; people love to see other people’s passion shine through, whether that be in sport, music, or film. The director/screenwriter, Wes Craven, knew exactly what he wanted to achieve with the film; he wasn’t making it for financial gain, or because a studio mandated that he should. He made it because he had a unique story and interesting characters that he wanted to share with the world. And that’s really the heart of film.

The scares, the thrills, and everything else just came naturally. For as long as the strong foundation was there, A Nightmare on Elm Street was always destined to be a sure-fire hit. Of course, this was all aided with great acting, cinematography, and editing. And although the effects may seem outdated and flimsy looking to a 2020 audience, they can be overlooked because of the sheer amount of charm and fun that the film delivers. You’ve got to remember that, not only did the film come out close to 40 years ago, but it also only had a budget of 1.4 million USD, which isn’t a lot in the grand scheme of things.

Fans will continue to come back to the series, even it’s less than perfect entries, just because the first film left such a good impression on so many people. Nostalgia is a powerful thing that’s shouldn’t be underestimated. And that lead us on to the second major reason why the franchise is still going strong after all these years…

 

Merchandise, Merchandise, And More Merchandise!

 

Everyone loves a bit of memorabilia; whether that be centred around your favourite band, football team, or film. There are some things in our world that are just inherently collectible or fun to own, and film merchandise is one of those many things.

A Nightmare on Elm Street has seen thousands of related products released over the decades. There are countless collectible items that come from the film: Gloves based around Freddy’s knife-life hands, masks that give off the appearance of Freddy’s burnt-like skin, video games based on the movie, etc. The list goes on.

Back in the 80s, these things were cool to own, but didn’t exactly have a lot of value placed upon them, monetary or sentimental. Most of this merchandise was cheap plastic made for teens, and a lot of it was just the studio, or third-party companies trying to make a quick buck off of the series’ popularity. Its only within the last decade or so that merchandise for the film has really upped a notch.

Nostalgia is in, and more and more people are wanting to collect little knick-knacks that remind them of their childhoods or their teen years. For many people, especially cinephiles, the Nightmare on Elm Street series was a huge part of their adolescence. And it’s not just people who grew up with the films that are wanting to collect memorabilia from the franchise, but horror and film fans in general.

Since none of these folks want low-quality, plastic props from the 80s, there has been a huge demand for high quality merchandise, including collectable figures, limited edition art prints, realistic full head and shoulder covering silicone Freddy masks, and the most iconic piece Nightmare On Elm Street of memorabilia, high-end fully working metal replica Freddy Krueger gloves for each of the movies in the franchise. This huge boom in the films’ merchandising, has contributed massively to the continued legacy of the series!

 

So, In Conclusion…

The legacy of this awesome horror film franchise is carried by the sheer love and adoration of the fanbase. From yearly re-screenings of the film, to massive markets for merchandising, it’s the film’s die-hard fans that are maintaining the series’ position as one of the greatest film franchises in cinematic history!