Blu-ray: A Rental at Best
2.5 Stars out of 5
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3rd Party $32.00
Release Date: September 27th, 2011
Movie Release Year: 1985
Release Country: United States
COLLAPSE INFO -

A Nightmare on Elm Street 2 : Freddy's Revenge / A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (Double Feature)

Review Date December 18th, 2011 by
Overview -

A Nightmare On Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge - 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 spatter the screen. Look for Robert Englund minus his Freddy face in the opening sequence. He's a real scream!

A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors - Born the bastard son of a hundred maniacs, demented killer Freddy Krueger is back for fresh victims in this hallucinatory shocker co-written by original creator Wes Craven (Scream 1, 2 and 3).

The last of the Elm Street kids are now at a psychiatric ward where Freddy haunts their dreams with unspeakable horrors. Their only hope is dream researcher and fellow survivor Nancy Thompson (Heather Langenkamp of the original Nightmare), who helps them battle the supernatural psycho on his own hellish turf.

Starring Patricia Arquette (Bringing Out The Dead, Stigmata) and Academy Award-nominee Laurence Fishburne (The Matrix, Hoodlum), "Dream Warriors is both a horrific and hysterical trip!" (L.A. Herald-Examiner).

OVERALL
A Rental at Best
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  • TECH SPECS & RELEASE DETAILS
    Technical Specs: BD-50 Dual-Layer Disc,Region Free
    Video Resolution/Codec: 1080p/AVC MPEG-4
    Length:183
    Release Country:United States
    Aspect Ratio(s):1.85:1
    English Descriptive Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1,English Dolby Digital 1.0,French Dolby Digital 1.0,Spanish Dolby Digital 1.0
    Subtitles/Captions: English SDH,French,Spanish
    Special Features: Featurettes
    Music Video
    Trailers
    Movie Studio: New Line Cinema
    Release Date: September 27th, 2011

Story Review Storyline: Our Reviewer's Take

2.5 Stars out of 5

Freddy's Revenge

After the immense success of Craven's 'Nightmare,' New Line exec Robert Shaye took advantage of its commercial appeal with this poorly-conceived follow-up. In fact, this is the one movie of the entire franchise seen by many, including its own creators, as the best-forgotten stain on Freddy's history. Part of the problem is the attempt to stray from Craven's clear guidelines of the Freddy Krueger mythos, something which later installments try to correct. Working from a script by newcomer David Chaskin, director Jack Sholder proudly brought the killer out of the dream world and into reality, taking it even further by involving a possession/psychological element that ultimately seems silly. Nevertheless, there are a few aspects worth appreciating in this sequel.

One of them, which evolves into the franchise's signature trademark, is Freddy's god complex and his witty, cynical one-liners just before killing his victims. None of it is quite as blatant or wholly humorous as others in the series, but we can see the makings of a beloved and celebrated horror icon in this sequel. His interactions with Jesse (Mark Patton) are a bit comical and twisted, though Sholder's direction maintains a certain level of spookiness throughout. Freddy also displays a playful, maniacal side to his reign of terror, enjoying the many ways he toys with his victims. Unfortunately, much of this seems defeated in a script that drags in several places with conversations questioning Jesse's mental health. Too much about Jesse and not enough time spent with Freddy.

Another troubling aspect of 'Freddy's Revenge' is the removal of a central female protagonist. On the surface, it seems like a silly notion to gripe about, but as this movie proves, watching one's dream violated by a child murderer is more terrifyingly effective with a character like Nancy. With Jesse, the story carries an underlying implication of homoeroticism and a teen struggling with sexual identity. Much of this goes in line with the plot's psychological element and one prominent scene showing Jesse unable to be affectionate with Lisa (Kim Myers). The whole affair simply takes away from the movie's fear factor and is worsened by the idea that Nancy's former house contains the ghost of Freddy Kruger. In the end, the sequel is really the least memorable of the 'Nightmare' franchise. (Movie Rating: 2/5)

Dream Warriors

Things improve drastically with the third installment, which brings back the franchise's creator Wes Craven back to write a screenplay that makes better use of Freddy's mastery over the dream world. The previous movie never really took advantage of this concept and its imaginative possibilities, so from its opening moments Craven's story seems determined to do precisely that. It also features a central female character in a very young Patricia Arquette as Kristen, and like Nancy, the teen has a distant relationship with her mother that coincides with a sleeping disorder. However, those issues are lightly gleaned over in favor of what fans really want. Right from the start, 'Dream Warriors' makes itself known as a slasher horror flick about nightmares with Freddy at the center of it all.

It's easy to gather that Craven aimed the second sequel as the franchise's return to its origins and make the last entry a forgotten dream. Freddy doesn't just haunt one kid, but chases after a group of teens fearing the one place where they should feel safest. Upping the ante, the kids are a troubled motley of psychiatric patients with highly active imaginations, allowing for director Chuck Russell to be wonderfully creative with each nightmare sequence. This is where Freddy's warped sense of humor is solidified, showing that he enjoys taunting his victims in ingenious and often hilariously ironic ways. And Englund loves every minute of it. With this in place, 'Dream Warriors' also takes a moment to give Freddy a bit more history and background, revealing he's "the bastard son of a hundred maniacs."

Craven's story idea, which was later tightened up a bit more by Frank Darabont ('The Walking Dead,' 'The Shawshank Redemption') in one of his earliest industry jobs, makes a further connection to the first movie by having the kids be "the last of the Elm Street children." It's a bit of a stretch to be sure, but nicely rectified with Heather Langenkamp reprising her role as Nancy Thompson, now working as a therapist and sleep specialist. Demonstrating Freddy's power to control the dreams of others doesn't hurt either. Nonetheless, it's all part of a master plan as fans watch Nancy's father (John Saxon) and her coworker (Craig Wasson) try to locate Freddy's remains in an auto salvage yard. Basically, Craven intended to bring any possibility of a franchise to a screeching halt, but fortunately for us horror maniacs, that attempt failed. (Movie Rating: 3.5/5)

The Blu-ray: Vital Disc Stats

Warner Brothers offers 'Freddy's Revenge' and 'Dream Warriors' on the same Region Free, BD50 disc and housed inside a blue eco-case. At startup, viewers are taken to a split screen where they can pick their movie of choice, followed by a main menu with a still and music.

  • TECH SPECS & RELEASE DETAILS
    Technical Specs:
    BD-50 Dual-Layer Disc,Region Free
    Video Resolution/Codec:
    1080p/AVC MPEG-4
    Length:183
    Release Country:United States
    Aspect Ratio(s):
    1.85:1
    Audio Formats:
    English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1,English Dolby Digital 1.0,French Dolby Digital 1.0,Spanish Dolby Digital 1.0
    Subtitles/Captions:
    English SDH,French,Spanish
    Special Features:
    Featurettes
    Music Video
    Trailers
    Movie Studio: New Line Cinema
    Release Date: September 27th, 2011

Video Review

3 Stars out of 5

Freddy's Revenge

Krueger returns with a very good 1080p/AVC MPEG-4 encode that greatly improves upon past incarnations. The nicely-defined picture shows a strong, stable contrast level, giving it a sharp, crisp appeal with lots of visible information. Fine object and textural detailing is surprisingly good with hardly a scene dropping in quality. Blacks are also consistent and quite energetic, providing some nice depth of field throughout, and dark, murky shadows are rarely problematic. Colors, especially greens and reds, are vibrant and richly saturated without appearing artificial or affecting flesh tones in a horribly negative way. Overall, the sequel looks great in HD. (Video Rating: 3.5/5)

Dream Warriors

The second sequel, which makes a far better follow-up than the previous movie, unfortunately gets the shaft with this average and somewhat problematic AVC-encoded transfer. While a few scenes look pretty good on occasion, fine object and textural details are often blurry and lack any clear, distinct sharpness. There are also many moments when resolution significantly drops, ruining overall definition to a greater degree. Contrast and brightness feels about right for a horror flick of this age, but they're unexciting and a bit flat nonetheless. Colors are appear accurate as well, but don't seem to benefit much from the upgrade. The image also shows a thin grain structure that's consistent. The biggest distraction, however, is the noticeable telecine judder every time the camera slowly pans, which is worst in the first half than the second. In the end, 'Dream Warriors' doesn't look all that great in HD. (Video Rating: 2/5)

Audio Review

3.5 Stars out of 5

Freddy's Revenge

The DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack, unfortunately, doesn't impress as well as the video. It's not wholly terrible, just rather plain and conventional. Vocals are nicely prioritized and intelligible, making Jesse's funny screeches perfectly audible and piercing. The rest of the soundstage is also contained mostly in the center of the screen. There's hardly any movement throughout while the mid-range often feels limited and narrow. The same goes for the low-frequency effects, which are used on occasion but lack a great deal of power and depth. The musical score is scarcely heard in the back speakers, often feeling somewhat forced and a tad distracting. If engineers had kept this in the original mono, the lossless mix would probably be better. (Audio Rating: 3/5)

Dream Warriors

For the audio, those disturbed kids sound better than they look with this very good DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. Dialogue reproduction is clean and precise in the center while the other two channels provide lots of fun off-screen effects, which open and widen the soundstage. The lossless mix displays plenty of sharp detailing in the mid and upper frequencies. The low-end, however, doesn't offer much even though it's audible in the several scenes requiring deep bass. Although the design is mostly presented as a stereo presentation, as it should, it does offer a bit of activity in the rear speakers. Other than a few, very distant atmospherics, the musical score spreads into the back smoothly and nicely enhances the soundfield, making this a very enjoyable high-rez track. (Audio Rating: 3.5/5)

Special Features

1 Stars out of 5

Warner ports over the same set of special features found on the DVD boxset from a few years back.

Freddy's Revenge

  • Heroes and Villains (SD, 6 min) — With a slight apologetic air to it, the piece has filmmakers discuss story origins and its place in the franchise.

  • Psycho Sexual Circus (SD, 3 min) — Filmmakers talk about the homoerotic and sexual undertones within the movie.

  • The Male Witch (SD, 3 min) — An all-too brief look at the special make-up effects by Kevin Yagher.

  • Freddy on 8th Street (SD, 5 min) — A discussion on a publicity stunt done by Jeffrey Wells prior to the release of the sequel.

  • Trailer (SD)—The original theatrical preview.

Dream Warriors

  • Behind the Story (SD) — A section containing seven separate featurettes, like actors finding everlasting fame once they appear on a Freddy movie ("Fan Mail," 1 min). "Onward Christian Soldiers" talks about developing the story and thoughts about the end product (9 min). "Snakes & Ladders" discusses the special effects (6 min). "Trading 8's" is an amusing talk about the beginning of Freddy delivering his funny one-liners (4 min). "That's Showbiz" has Robert Englund reminiscing about his memories working on set (2 min). The cast takes a turn discussing their experiences on set in "Burn Out" (4 min). Director Jack Sholder quickly gives his thoughts on New Line Cinema's newfound success in "The House that Freddy Built" (1 min).

  • Music Video (SD) — 80s hair-band Dokken performs their awful song, "Dream Warriors."

  • Trailer (SD) — The original theatrical trailer for part three.

Final Thoughts

Dubbed the 2-Movie Collection, Warner Home Video offers Freddy fans the next two sequels in the 'Nightmare on Elm Street' series on Blu-ray. Though 'Freddy's Revenge' falls incredibly short of its predecessor's scare factor or logic, part two has some interesting ideas filmmakers tried to explore. 'Dream Warriors' brings the franchise back to its rightful place and expands on the Freddy character with some very creative dream sequences. Picture quality on both movies is not exactly going to wow anyone, but they're a slight upgrade from their DVD counterparts. The audio presentation fares better though still not by much. Supplements are the same as before, but devoted fans are probably better off waiting for the inevitable high-def boxset and collect all seven films.

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3rd Party $32.00
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  • TECH SPECS & RELEASE DETAILS
    Technical Specs:
    BD-50 Dual-Layer Disc,Region Free
    Video Resolution/Codec:
    1080p/AVC MPEG-4
    Length:183
    Release Country:United States
    Aspect Ratio(s):
    1.85:1
    Audio Formats:
    English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1,English Dolby Digital 1.0,French Dolby Digital 1.0,Spanish Dolby Digital 1.0
    Subtitles/Captions:
    English SDH,French,Spanish
    Special Features:
    Featurettes
    Music Video
    Trailers
    Movie Studio: New Line Cinema
    Release Date: September 27th, 2011