Friday, October 27, 2006

Day 9: In which Freddy the Phallus comes... for you!

Just about all of the movies I am doing I have seen several times each, but mostly during childhood or high school. I'm amazed at how much my perception has changed, and the different things I am picking up on now as I re-visit them. Witness: Nightmare.

A Nightmare on Elm Street. Wes Craven's intention was for this to be a self-contained horror film; he did not foresee any sequels. As such, we shouldn't lump this one into the same category of movies that we do its campy, self-aware, future brethren. Its thematic content should actually be taken seriously. Snicker, snicker.

Here's the lowdown. Fred the child molestor-murderer is dead, burned to death at the hands of vengeful parents. No longer able to physically rape children in the conventional manner, he must now force himself upon them in their subconscious (the dream state) in order to "penetrate" the real world (and their flesh).

Okay, so maybe this Freudian mess shouldn't be taken too seriously. The film ends up being a smorgasbord of phallic imagery, made to look almost silly in its overtness. Take Freddy's clawed glove, for instance. With it, his ability to subdue his prey is stronger, and he can penetrate to deathly painful depths. As he says in reference to it, "THIS is god!" But the most overt sexual reference made to it comes during the bathtub scene, in which it is literally erected between Nancy's legs, claws fully extended. One, two, Freddy's coming for you... indeed.

Other imagery: A dream with dead and bloody Tina wrapped in a body condom. Her boyfriend being lynched with a dick-shaped sheet. Johnny Depp's death "coming" as a geyser-like eruption of blood as he sinks into a womb-like hole in his bed. Freddy cutting off his own fingers and watching them ejaculate. Father/mother tension and relationship disorders.

Contrast Freddy to Jason here. Jason can be seen as the conduit of moral justice: sleep around, and you will die. Fred is more the demon of anti-sex. In life, he raped (removing all pleasure from the act), and in his current undead state he is able to attack the subconscious, the root of all sexual desire. Now, I don't know what the fuck all that's supposed to mean or signify, I'm just throwing it out there as what I picked up on. Who's a psych major around here?

All the psychobabble aside, Nightmare really isn't even that scary. The story is so far out there that it's almost impossible to relate to, or take to heart. Oh fuck, I better not sleep tonight, or Freddy might kill me in my dreams. Give me a fucking break. Of course, this in no way minimizes its cultural impact, as this is the film in which Wes Craven officially gave Freddy Krueger to the world.

Not exactly a lightweight!

Tomorrow: Pet Sematary.

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At 1:01 PM, October 27, 2006, Blogger CD said...

Tito's the perfect guy to talk to about this. Not only is he a psych major, but he has a unique fascination with little kids.

And he's a huge Johnny Depp fan.

At 3:04 PM, October 27, 2006, Blogger Vince said...

Tito... we will discuss this tomorrow over Longhorn football.

Hook 'em!

I'm drunk.

At 3:58 PM, October 27, 2006, Blogger Tito said...

Am I that apparent? You can almost see right thrrough my pretty pink underware

At 9:46 PM, October 27, 2006, Blogger Richard said...

Watching your fingers ejaculate? Seriously, Toonces.

At 10:08 PM, October 27, 2006, Blogger Richard said...

Oh! and are those italicized introductions yours?

At 8:12 AM, October 30, 2006, Anonymous Virg said...

After reading this I don't think I know anyone that needs to get laid more than you.


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