Horror Movie Review: A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (1989)


This is the 3rd Nightmare on Elm Street film in 3 years. Seriously…the 3rd movie came in 1987, the 4th in 1988 & now this in 1989. They really had a bankable character at this time & they wanted to squeeze every penny out of Freddy.

Set a year after the events of the first movie the credits are played over a not so subtle sex scene. The kind that is meant to show romance & no bobs at all…the morning after we see the steamy couple is good old Alice & Dan from the last movie. Life had moved on from Freddy & everything seems good until she steps into the shower.

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There she has a vision of herself as a nun in an asylum with the name tag, Amanda Krueger. She is than locked in with the psychos but wakes up before anything bad can happen. One of my least favourite horror tropes occurs next….the dream within a dream.

The next day at school graduation we are introduced to the new cast of soon to be dead people. ​We have Greta (wants to be a model with an over-bearing mother), Mark (comic book nerd) & Yvonne who is so bland I had to look up her thing (she likes to swim).

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Alice has another vision of the asylum yet this time she is at the birth of Freddy Krueger. Amanda & the doctors aren’t impressed by what is born & the little creature escapes to the church where Alice defeated Freddy in the last movie. The baby-thing fuses with the remains of Freddy & grows instantly into an adult. Freddy has found the key to returning every time now…

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At this point it seems like a very by the numbers Nightmare movie but there is an added twist with Alice being pregnant by Dan & Freddy using the babies dreams to invade the dreams of the others.

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It was always going to be a tall order to top some of the spectacular deaths seen in other movies but there are still some great ones here. It’s a pity that the cast are just there to die in inventive ways & there is little character development for anyone including Alice. That she never references all the deaths of her previous friends annoyed the hell out of me.

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This is also the sleepiest cast ever with people falling asleep at the most random of times.

The movie feels like a continuation of Nightmare 4 with Alice being the main star but she doesn’t seem to have learned anything from dealing with Freddy before. Her warnings to her friends are half-arsed & she could have dropped a little more knowledge on them.

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The other major problem is that Freddy just isn’t that smart himself…his one-liners are cringe-worthy & he does things that feel out of place even for him (skateboarding!?). Add that to worse make-up (easily the worst so far) & a horrible comic-book style death that just drags on & you’re not left with a whole lot.

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There are some really good effects especially at the end & the child actor involved holds his own against Alice & Freddy. It’s not the best ending of the series but it’s interesting enough & it makes sense.

As per usual we get a lasting shot that implies Freddy probably isn’t dead just yet…

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This is the worst of the bunch so far but it’s still not a bad horror film. It lacks a lot of what made other Nightmare movies so compelling but still has an inventive death or 2.

A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child
  • 6/10
    The Final Score - 6/10
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