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Overall Rating

Awesome: 19.23%
Worth A Look38.46%
Just Average: 28.85%
Pretty Crappy: 7.69%
Sucks: 5.77%

1 review, 46 user ratings

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Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master, A
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by Dr. Isaksson

"Alice in Freddyland"
3 stars

Wes Craven gave birth to a wicked idea for a horror film which in turn stacked up 6 sequels from his 1984 original. The first "Nightmare on Elm Street" gave us the story of Fred Kruger, a child murderer who was hunted down by the parents of the slain children and killed. However, Freddy (as he is called) is now haunting teens even though he is dead. How does his reach his victims? In their dreams...

The fourth installment of A Nightmare on Elm Street released in 1988 is named The Dream Master. And the Dream Master doesn't pertain to Freddy but a young woman who has gained the power to take control of her nightmares. And her name is Alice. I saw A Nightmare on Elm Street 4 The Dream Master when I was 12 years old at the theater and was all excited cause I was really into the 'Freddy Movies' and when the film was over I wasn't disappointed. I was defiantly digging it in that 1988 kind of way.

The Dream Master takes up right where Nightmare on Elm Street 3 left off. Kristen, (No longer played by Patricia Arquette but by Tuesday Knight) is now out of the mental hospital and trying to get a normal existence going. But she is still worried about Freddy and her nightmares don't seem to be ending. And sure enough, Freddy makes it clear to poor Kristen that he's still very much around. He returns to her dreams with deadly consequences. But in Kristen's final encounter with Freddy, she unwillingly pulls her friend Alice (Lisa Wilcox) into the dream and transfers her own 'dream warrior' powers to her. This of course freaks the shit out of Alice but Freddy is happy as hell because now he has a girl who has the ability to pull any and all of her friends into her dreams. It's all Fresh Meat for Freddy.

Alice is now tormented by Freddy while she helplessly brings him new teens to torment and kill. However, with each death, Alice gains her friends traits and their 'powers'. With one friend she takes in their wisdom, with another their martial arts ability. (Yeah it's kinda cheesy but it's an 80's horror film.) So, needless to say, by the time most of her friends are gone, Alice has built up a nice stack of abilities to take on Freddy with. And so with this power, Alice prepares herself to go head to head with Freddy in hopes that she can stop him.

And what concludes A Nightmare on Elm Street 4 is a totally radical, kung fu fighting, all out battle with Freddy who in turn gets a royal ass kicking courtesy of Alice.

This one was directed by Renny Harlin and I'd say this is one of his best efforts. And of course that's not saying much. But he does stay quite true to the first Nightmare which is nice to see. The music as well harkers back to the original with the same eerie theme. This gave the film a more authentic feel rather than just the typical 'throw-together slash em up and get it over with' frame of mind that most other sequels suffer from. Also, I noticed Harlin's nightmare sequences are much more dream-like than the previous two sequels. The nightmares here are filled with a great deal more of the 'freaky randomness' which pervades the bad dreams most people really have. I'm sure it's very hard for a director to capture that moment in a nightmare when nothing is making any sense and yet, there are scary things circling about you and you feel a hazy fear which is telling you something bad is going to happen, then it does. But I think Renny Harlin understood the first one enough and this film is a respectable sequel on most counts.

Lisa Wilcox, who plays Alice, definitely helps it along because she has a nice solid acting ability for this kind of film. She enters as a shy, mousy girl and exits an ass kicker. And she is pretty convincing too. The rest of the cast's acting goes from pretty good to slightly 'run of the mill 80's camp', but for the most part I wasn't shaking my head in disbelief. I was into it.

PS. Fave scene.---When Alice's friend Debbie (Brooke Thiessen?) has a nightmare and her arms brake off and from her nubs sprout roach legs.---

I think this is probably one of the best sequels to the "Nightmare on Elm Street" series. Despite it's hokey moments, the Nightmares are strong and the ending was cool. Not bad I say. *** 3 Stars

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=1151&reviewer=296
originally posted: 05/11/03 18:50:12
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User Comments

9/16/17 morris campbell entertaining with good effects but a thin plot 4 stars
1/15/15 the truth Pointless direct-sequel that still has series' most relatable characters DESPITE Freddy ^_~ 3 stars
1/18/10 Stanley Thai Easily the best sequel and most ingenious with lovable characters. 4 stars
3/08/09 blarginbadigalnohif Decent sequel though not as good as the 3rd 4 stars
2/04/07 JM Synth Entertaining, with imaginative kills, but doesn't really stand out 3 stars
3/11/06 Dillon The special effects replace the scares as being the highlights of the movie. 2 stars
11/23/05 cr a dropoff from part 3, but good visual effect ,cool songs and crazy kills and sexy heroine 4 stars
10/15/05 Darren O On the same level as DREAM WARRIORS, though Lisa Wilcox shines as Alice. 3 stars
6/10/05 Manu Ginobli Every Freddy movie rules 5 stars
6/01/05 me me me "Die Harder" director Renny Harlin should have remembered that this is not an action movie 3 stars
11/04/04 Freddy im sorry i made this shit 1 stars
8/14/04 X ! @ # ? Not as good as part three, but still pretty good. 4 stars
3/17/04 PAYNE_KillerZ Good, but not great... !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 4 stars
2/18/04 josh i think freddy is awsome so i think all the films are pretty good 4 stars
12/24/03 Samuel one of the best in the series!! 5 stars
11/01/03 American Slasher Goddess The guilty pleasure of the series. 3 stars
10/15/03 Erik Van Sant Renny Harlin directed this...and Cutthroat Island. I hate that man. This movie's alright. 4 stars
10/08/03 joana its scary 5 stars
8/31/03 cody the alice vs freddy fright is cool and got great visual effects,but it little to campy . 4 stars
8/03/03 Stefan Halka Creative deaths, and I dug Freddy as the wisecracker. 3 stars
7/21/03 Double G Gettin Better every time(excluding 1 and 2) 4 stars
4/05/03 Dave Not the worst in the series. Much more entertaining than most of the Friday The 13th films. 2 stars
12/06/02 BAM A GREAT FILM 5 stars
10/28/02 Charles Tatum 4 and 5 are interchangeable 2 stars
8/15/02 Shaun ran out of scary ideas, so make Freddy funny, it still works for me 4 stars
6/29/02 Wrought Iron Brigade Master Andras Jones shoulda lived - he was actually a LIKABLE teenager. One of the better Freddy's 4 stars
6/08/02 Gummibear X Cool, but no better than the 1st and 7th and the part where Freddy got kill waz cool! 4 stars
11/29/01 Rutt13 Cool, but Freddy's really getin' cheezy 4 stars
11/16/01 Shane Robert Myers!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Kick ass! this movie cool! with the dream slasher himself, Freddy Kruger!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 4 stars
8/11/01 Andrew Carden A Bit Better Then #2,3, and 4. 3 stars
8/05/01 E-Funk The best Renny Harlin film ever made! Is that good? 4 stars
6/28/01 King Jackass Awesome! 5 stars
6/07/01 Serial_Monk_the_Jawbreaker More style and flair than usual but the cast is terrible and Freddy's getting softer 4 stars
5/17/01 Javier J What's so good about this movie? I found it laughable & DUMD. Freddy is annoying. 1 stars
4/14/01 LiL It was pretty good, but the teens are getting uncontrolable, except for Alice's brother! 4 stars
3/19/01 Tony Andruss this is the best movie ever!! Go Alice! You kick ass! 5 stars
8/16/00 Rich Corle Effects= great and the direction was incredible!! 5 stars
5/01/00 Gus Van Sant good shite! 5 stars
4/30/00 yo momma good shit 5 stars
2/15/00 Kyle Broflovski At least the kids were semi-interesting...I was madly in love with Alice's brother. :-) 4 stars
2/05/00 Steve Layne the one-liners started in part 3 and took over in this one 3 stars
12/29/98 thEnd HUGE fan of the series, Craven did no wrong (oops, Scream sucked...) 5 stars
11/25/98 Mr.Pink The best sequel in the series. Weird, surrealistic and exciting! 4 stars
10/17/98 Johny Didn't care for it 2 stars
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  02-Jul-1988 (R)
  DVD: 13-Apr-2010


  02-Feb-1989 (M)

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