Hello folks, and welcome the heck back to Wrong Every Time. The winter anime season is in full swing at this point, and surprisingly enough, I’m actually watching some currently airing anime. Laid-Back Camp is as charming as ever, and … Continue reading →
Hello folks, and welcome the heck back to Wrong Every Time. The winter anime season is in full swing at this point, and surprisingly enough, I’m actually watching some currently airing anime. Laid-Back Camp is as charming as ever, and Horimiya is readily demonstrating Masashi Ishihama’s talents – but ultimately, Wonder Egg Priority is in a league of its own. The show’s first episode was so gracefully composed, creative, and beautiful that it essentially demanded my attention, evoking those same “shut up and sit down, you’re watching a masterpiece” shivers I got from the premieres of Madoka, or The Eccentric Family, or Flip Flappers. I’ve got a notes article out on that episode already, and am hoping to continue writing on it through the season – but in the meantime, yes, I did indeed also watch a bunch of random movies this week. Without further ado, let’s break ‘em all down in the Week in Review!
As anyone who’s been reading these posts likely knows, I’m a big horror fan, and I’ve lately been trying to fill out my knowledge of horror films. For a while, this meant bouncing around all the big tentpole franchises, taking in the first entries in franchises like Halloween and Friday the 13th. I’m generally not a big sequel person; great stories are generally cohesive objects that use up their ideas the first time around, and I’d personally rather experience more new things than huddle over the dying embers of an old idea. But in horror films, the idea of franchises that go on and on is an essential part of the model – and so this week I decided to pay tribute to that model, by checking out the second and third Nightmare on Elm Street films.
A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddie’s Revenge is a profoundly weird sequel, and presumably a good example of just how much individual entries in these franchises can chart their own path. The film centers on a boy named Jessie, whose family moves into the house of the first film’s heroine, with predictably bloody results. Much of the strangeness of this film likely stems from Jessie’s position – though he’s a boy, he’s consistently framed using the cinematic language of a “final girl,” a damsel who shares a special relationship with the killer. And beyond this, the film is absolutely drenched in clear homoerotic imagery, with an underlying “Freddie is the demon inside me” metaphor that feels like some slanted approach to a sexual awakening narrative.
Freddie’s Revenge isn’t a particularly good horror movie – the kills aren’t terribly inspired, the film is frankly mean-spirited (Jessie’s actor Mark Patton ultimately contributed to a documentary on the horrible filming process), and the structural novelty of casting a boy as the final girl never really pays off in any way. But it’s an exceedingly interesting “broken” movie, using the trappings of Freddy Krueger’s world for a story that is very little like a traditional slasher. I could see by the end of this one that pursuing these franchises wouldn’t necessarily feel like watching the same movie over and over.