Monday, October 12, 2009

31 Days of Halloween - Day 12 - Movie

In the unsubtle "A Nightmare On Elm Street 2 - Freddy's Revenge" (1985), Jesse (Mark Patton), a teenager who has just moved into a new house, and presumedly, a new school struggles with his homosexuality. He has a girlfriend, Lisa (Kim Myers), but is desires his male friend, Grady (Robert Rusler). His struggles lead to violence, causing him to kill his bdsm gym teacher. Lisa tries desperately to "cure" him, but Jesse keeps pushing her away. At a party at Lisa's house, Jesse tries to make love to her, but finds himself revolted to be kissing between her breasts. He runs to Grady and begs him to let him sleep with him, then kills him too. He the returns to Lisa's party, resists the temptation to kill her as well, and instead turns his violence against the entire gay male population of his high school, also attending the party before running away. Lisa tracks him down and is finally able to surpress Jesse's gay urges, or is she?

This heavy handed product of its time is chock full of homo-erotic imagery; muscular teenage boys in short shorts, no shorts, briefs, shirtless and sweaty, showering, naked, miming masturbation, wrestling, etc., as well as an opening nightmare in which Jesse is trapped with two teenage girls inside a school bus balanced precariously on top of a phallic symbol over the chasm of Hell itself. As the girls approach him, the bus totters and the phallic symbol crumbles. There is also plenty of steam, fire, heat, sweat, and bursting pipes and beer cans spraying geysers of fluid when ever Jesse's homosexual urges begin to manifest, and plenty of images of disfigurement to let us know how disgusted Jesse finds himself when he gives in to these urges.

Really, that's what this movie is about. Jesse and his family move into the house from the first movie, and Freddy Krueger begins to take possession of him, forcing him to kill, first the gym teacher by stripping him naked and tying him to the pipes in the shower room, then killing him by whipping his bare ass with locker room towels, and Freddy's glove, which he uses for his other murders. Lisa tries to guide Jesse back out of Freddy's control. There are far fewer outstanding nightmare visuals in this movie than the first, but the one that occurs right before Jesse kills Grady is a pretty good one.


Stephen said...

I never saw a need for sequels, even though they were pretty much a given. I saw the first one a million times, but don't think I ever saw any of the others. I'll pass on this one.

John Rozum said...

I agree. Apparently Wes Craven never wanted any sequels either. I'm having a bad feeling about the rest of this week, since I've committed myself to watching the rest of them. Tonight's installment at least has Laurence Fishburne in it, so that's something.

Shawn Robare said...

NOES 2 feels a lot like Halloween 3 in that it's really, when you get down to it, not in the same universe. Nightmare 2 really feels like a script for another movie with Freddy shoehorned in. In fact it would probably would have been more interesting without the Freddy bits. I still love Englund delivering the line "You've got the body, and I've got the brains..."

John Rozum said...

Shawn, that's exactly what this movie feels like.

seanetta said...

Your film analysis is right on target, I took a class in Queer Film Studies (emphasis on gays portrayed as monsters) & we reviewed this film for many of the points you presented. I'd give you an A+ for your presentation.

Though you failed to mention my favorite moment of the film, the actual lovebirds. Who could resist a nuclear family being tormented by a psychopathic "bird-cam", only to have the room explode in a shower of feathers from something the size of "Big Bird"?