A Nightmare on Elm Street is a 2014 American horror film written and directed by Wes Craven and stars Emma Watson, Dylan O'Brien, Robert Englund, Bruce Greenwood and Helen Mirren. Craven would later direct the sequel, A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Dream Warriors and A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Final Nightmare.
Alice Fowles (Lily Collins), a high school student, has a disturbing nightmare in which she sees a badly burned man, wearing a red and green striped jumper and a fedora, chasing her through a boiler room. He slashes at her with a razor glove just as she wakes up to find her nightgown has been tore in the same way. The next day, she goes to the Springwood Diner to meet her friend, waitress Nancy Holbrook (Emma Watson). Alice's ex-boyfriend Rod Lane (Alex Pettyfer) also shows up and they both listen as Kris describes her dream. Nancy says that she also had a nightmare, but dismisses it.
That night, Nancy and her boyfriend Glenn Lantz (Thomas Sangster) go around to Alice house as her mother is out of town and she is worried about sleeping alone, so they agree to stay the night. Rod shows up once again, and he and Alice go into her room to have sex. Nancy and Glenn then go home. During the night, Alice begins to have another nightmare in which the burned man is once again chasing her. He eventually catches up to her and stabs her. In reality, Alice begins to scream and thrash about violently, waking Rod up. Rod pulls back to the floor, Rod flees from the room and runs over to Nancy's house. She opens the door to find him covered in blood and weeping.
The following day, Rod is arrested by Nancy's father, Lt. Donald Thompson (Bruce Greenwood) on suspicion of Kris' murder. In school, Nancy begins to doze off and sees a terrifying vision of Alice in a bloody body bag. Nancy wakes up screaming and then goes home. She heads over to the police station to speak to Rod, who pleads his innocence to her. Nancy tells him that she doesn't think he killed Alice.
Later that night, Nancy invites Glenn over to watch over her while she goes to sleep so that he can wake her up if she is in danger. Nancy has a dream where she sees the burned man entering Rod's jail cell. Realizing he is in danger, Nancy wakes up and she and Glenn race over to the police station. Just as they arrive, Rod is found dead, hanged by his own bedsheets. Nancy's father, Donald, rules the death a suicide, but Nancy and Glenn aren't convinced.
At Rod's funeral, Nancy and Glenn both realize that they can remember neither each other or their friends before high school and wonder what their connection was. They learn that they all attended the same preschool together and question Nancy's alcoholic mother, Marge (Helen Mirren), who explains some history to them. There was once a gardener who worked at the preschool named Freddy Kruger (Robert Englund), who in reality was an child abuser. In Marge's word, Freddy killed 50 children on Springwood, but was arrested, however, duo to someone who forgot to sighn the prision demand, Freddy was let free.
Nancy tries to track down the other kids from the preschool, but learns that they all died in their sleep. Glenn thinks that his dreams must be repressed memories and tries to move on, but when he falls asleep, he has a vision of what really happened to Freddy. He was hiding in the boiler room where he killed the children from Springwood, when the angry parents, led by Nancy's father, arrived in the form of a mob and torched Freddy's hideout, trapping him inside and burning him to death. Glenn informs Nancy and she deduces that Freddy is now coming back for revenge from beyond the grave.
Nancy and Glenn do some further research and decide that the only way to defeat Freddy is to stop being afraid of him so that he'll lose his power. During another nightmare, Nancy pulls Freddy's hat back into the real world with her when she wakes up, and the two hatch a plan to pull Freddy out and defeat him in the real word.
However, they plan is foiled by their parents, who have become concerned with how much they know and lock them in their respective houses to keep them apart. Nancy sets an alarm and goes to sleep to try and find Freddy. At his house, Glenn falls asleep and he and Nancy meet each other in the dream. Freddy shows up and chases them, but Glenn is awoken by his mother. He then runs past her and out of his house, heading towards Nancy's.
In the dream, Nancy tells Freddy that she knows who he is and why is doing what he is. Freddy explains that he now came back to destroy all the children in order to get revenge in their parents. Nancy tries to convince him not to, but Freddy tells her that it is now his mission to kill all of the children of Springwood. He attacks her and she grabs hold of him just as Glenn bursts into her room and wakes her up. She is angry at him, thinking that she failed to pull Freddy out, until he appears behind Glenn and impales him through the chest. He then chases Nancy through the house.
Meanwhile, Glenn's parents call Lieutenant Thompson and he races home to try and stop them. He arrives just as Freddy corners Nancy in the kitchen after a long chase. Thompson retrieves his rifle and shoots Freddy in the chest. Nancy then stabs Freddy in the head with a knife, and her and her father share an embrace. As the authorities arrive, Freddy's body vanishes.
Nancy is sitting in her mother's room and her father apologizes for not believing her before leaving to deal with Glenn's parents. Freddy then appears in the room and reminds Nancy that he made a promise to kill her. Nancy calmly gets up and starts to walk away. Freddy lunges at her, but his glove passes through her and he falls to his knees. Nancy tells Freddy that she isn't afraid of him anymore and leaves the room, closing the door on Freddy, with him disappearing.
In the hallway, Nancy is met by her mother and they hug. Freddy suddenly bursts through an adjacent mirror and pulls Gwen inside while Nancy screams.
- Emma Watson as Nancy Thompson
- Dylan O'Brien as Glenn Lantz
- Robert Englund as Freddy Krueger
- Bruce Greenwood as Lt. Donald Thompson
- Helen Mirren as Marge Thompson
- Lilly Collins as Alice Hardy
- Alex Pettyfer as Rod Lane
A Nightmarte on Elm Street was critically-acclaimed by critics. In the rewien-aggregator site, Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an score of 98% approval, while the site consensus reads: "Wes Craven's intelligent and unique plot and directing, combined with the horrifying visual appearance of Freddy Krueger, still causes nightmares to this day. A Nightmare on Elm Street is ecxellent because it conbines beuty, sensualism and a highly imaginative horror premise that provides the requisite shocks to keep fans of the genre happy, managing to rupture the boundaries between the imaginary and real." The films received many wards and nominations, as well as being declared one of the best of 2014.
Roger Ebert, of the Chicago Sun Times gave the film four out of four stars, sating: The film is an masterpiece from it's begginign to it's end, as well with well-produced characters and an inventive and intelligent villain.