If you’re going to remake a classic of the teen-slasher genre, especially one with a villain sporting a broadly wicked tongue-in-cheek sense of humor, Jackie Earle Haley seems like a razor-sharp choice as Freddy Krueger, the ultimate dream warrior. But you should make sure you cue him in to the notion that you want him to be funny.
During his ongoing career resurgence, Haley hasn’t had many opportunities to display his more playful side. The only memorable set of funny moments for him came during Semi-Pro, when his perpetually stoned, shirtless goofball character woke up to sink a prize-winning shot and then had to dog the shoddy promoters to receive payment.
But even then, it should be noted, Haley came across more than a little creepy. It is seemingly in his blood. He's a Rorschach inkblot of creepiness. And in this Michael Bay-produced remake of the original A Nightmare on Elm Street, his Freddy Krueger feels like a stained cardboard version of his Little Children creep, and there’s no fun to be had with that as a slasher set-up.
Where’s the leering over-the-top fun of Robert Englund? Grade: D
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