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A Master of Horror: Wes Craven

Written by Mary Blevins on .

The Nightmare is a horror film that was released in 1984. Wes Craven starred as the director of this trendy movie set on a fictional street named Elm, in a fictional town.

Several teenagers are being killed in their dreams by an unknown man who never leaves any clues behind to find him. He is burned, wears a dirty green and red striped sweater, and has razor knives for fingers. It is up to Nancy Thompson, one of the few teenagers still alive, and her boyfriend, Glen Lantz (Johnny Depp), to figure out what is happening before more people around them are killed. 

James Saxon plays their father, who happens to be a policeman working on finding this murderer, but so far has little success. This ultra-realistic horror flick was headed for disaster when James Saxon fell asleep during filming and missed his cue; however, Wes Craven decided it fit the scene because, well, his character was sleeping, so it fits perfectly.

The scenes shot in the dream sequences are filled with bright primary colors and are very surreal. The scenes shot during the day look stark white and highly realistic. This scenery change is what makes this film stand out from others of its period. It gave ordinary objects a horrifying element that would grab viewers’ attention yet keep them entertained because they were nervous about what might happen next. 

Nancy’s battle against Freddy Krueger became one of the American Film Institute’s best 100 Heroes and Villains as chosen by the public as #51 on their list of heroes and #7 on their list of villains.

Krueger looks like he belongs in a nightmare, not in real life.

The Nightmare on Elm Street was released on November 9, 1984. It grossed $25 million domestically and $29 million worldwide, which made it the most successful American horror film at the time.

Nightmare (noun) is a highly unpleasant dream in which the dreamer experiences helplessness, extreme anxiety, fear, or terror. 

“The first monster that an audience has to be scared of is the filmmaker.”

Wes Craven

Wes Craven

On August 2, 1939, Wes Craven was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and died in California on August 30, 2015. This master of horror began directing movies soon after graduating college with a major in English. His first movie was called The Last House on the Left, where he served as writer, director, and producer.

Wes Craven went on to direct many other movies, including The Hills Have Eyes which was made into a television series canceled after only one season, Swamp Thing in 1982, based on the D.C. Comics character Swamp Thing, Nightmare on Elm Street starring Johnny Depp’s ex-wife Amber Heard which grossed over $25 million domestically and $29 million worldwide and numerous others.

One of his most famous film series is A Nightmare on Elm Street, which is about a man that has been dead for several years and can attack people in their dreams. He focuses on why Freddy was able to kill so many teenagers in Springwood and ensure they stay dead when he doesn’t exist. This series became so popular and impacted American culture that there were at least nine movies made in this series, with a tenth rumored to be in production.

The movie series also led to two television series: A Nightmare on Elm Street: The Series, which ran from October 1988 until March 1990, and Wes Craven’s New Nightmare, which was released in 1994 in the theaters all over the U.S., just before the release of the seventh film in the franchise entitled Wes Craven’s New Nightmare.

Many of his films have been so successful that they have been remade now, having made hundreds of millions of dollars worldwide together. In December 1996 Wes Craven Directed Scream. 

Scream American Slasher Film

The Scream movie by Wes Craven introduced a new “Nightmare” and reinvented and revitalized the slasher-horror genre with this modern take on the horror classic. A masked (Ghost Face) knifed maniac stalks high-school students in middle-class suburbia USA. And grossing around 137 million dollars at the box office.

Wes Craven was a master of horror and made a career out of scaring people with spooky movies that were a little too real for comfort. With unforgettable characters, mind-blowing special effects, and movie posters that will forever remain in our nightmares, Wes Craven left behind a legacy larger than life. His unexpected death at the age of 76 has saddened millions worldwide as fans can’t help but notice how such an epic director could die so young. While many people never got to meet him or even see his work, he will be remembered by those who did as someone who changed their world.

Wes Craven died of brain cancer at his home in Los Angeles, California, on August 30, 2015, he was 76. However, it is currently unclear if there will be any more movies made after his death or they will remain as classics that are unforgettable to millions around the world who have watched them repeatedly with friends and family alike.

One thing for sure, though, is that Wes Craven’s movies will never leave our minds as he leaves behind a legacy larger than life itself – one that cannot be captured by words or images alone but only through the memories of those whose lives he touched with his heart-pounding horror flicks.

The nightmare is genuine, and if you are brave enough to face it, it will come to you. The demons of dreams come at night when the shadows grow long. It is said that they peer out through windows, their eyes fixated on those who lie helpless in their beds. They have been known to be the culprits of wrongdoings. But they are not evil beings. The nightmare exists to teach us about ourselves. If you are brave enough to face it, the beasts will come for you. They will come in human form, possessing your friends and family members until you are all that remains.

This master of horror left us with nightmares that will always stay in our minds whether we like it or not!


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