A Nightmare on Elm Street


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A Nightmare on Elm Street

A Nightmare on Elm Street is a 1984 American horror slasher film written and directed by Wes Craven, and the first film of the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. The film stars Heather Langenkamp, John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Amanda Wyss, Jsu Garcia, Robert Englund, and Johnny Depp in his feature film debut. Set in the fictional Midwestern town of Springwood, Ohio, the plot revolves around several teenagers who are stalked and killed in their dreams by Freddy Krueger. The teenagers are unaware of the cause of this strange phenomenon, but their parents hold a dark secret from long ago. Craven produced A Nightmare on Elm Street on an estimated budget of just $1.8 million, a sum the film earned back during its first week. An instant commercial success, the film's total United States box office gross is $25.5 million. A Nightmare on Elm Street was met with rave critical reviews and went on to make a very significant impact on the horror genre, spawning a franchise consisting of a line of sequels, a television series, a crossover with Friday the 13th, beyond various other works of imitation; a remake of the same name was released in 2010. The film is credited with carrying on many tropes found in low-budget horror films of the 1970s and 1980s, originating in John Carpenter's 1978 horror film Halloween, including the morality play that revolves around sexual promiscuity in teenagers resulting in their eventual death, leading to the term "slasher film" The Texas Chain Saw Massacre of Tobe Hooper. Critics and film historians argue that the film's premise is the question of the distinction between dreams and reality, which is manifested in the film through the teenagers' dreams and their realities. Critics today praise the film's ability to transgress "the boundaries between the imaginary and real", toying with audience perceptions.

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Actors & Characters

John Saxon John Saxon Donald Thompson Donald Thompson
Ronee Blakley Ronee Blakley Marge Thompson Marge Thompson
Heather Langenkamp Heather Langenkamp Nancy Thompson Nancy Thompson
Amanda Wyss Amanda Wyss Tina Grey Tina Grey
Jsu Garcia Jsu Garcia Rod Lane Rod Lane
Johnny Depp Johnny Depp Glen Lantz Glen Lantz
Charles Fleischer Charles Fleischer Dr. King Dr. King
Joseph Whipp Joseph Whipp Sgt. Parker Sgt. Parker
Robert Englund Robert Englund Freddy Krueger Freddy Krueger
Lin Shaye Lin Shaye Teacher Teacher


Jacques Haitkin Cinematography
Wes Craven Director
Rick Shaine Editor
Patrick McMahon Editor
Charles Bernstein Music
Robert Shaye Producer
Wes Craven Writer