A Little Seen 'Nightmare on Elm Street' Deleted Scene Would Have Drastically Changed Freddy Kreuger

A Little Seen 'Nightmare on Elm Street' Deleted Scene Would Have Drastically Changed Freddy Kreuger

Apr 28, 2016

A Nightmare on Elm Street really does have one of the most brilliantly simple premises in horror movie history. A strange man, Freddy Kreuger, can kill teenagers through their dreams. That's it, really. Even Kreuger himself has a simple, understandable back story as a villain: he was caught molesting school kids, and so the parents in town took justice into their own hands and killed him before he could hurt anyone else.

But as it turns out, Krueger's backstory was initially fairly different. He didn't just get caught abusing kids, we was a flat out serial killer. Not only that, but he killed the siblings of every one of final girl Nancy's friends, and had even murdered a sibling that Nancy never even knew she had.

Nancy's mom originally explained all of this in the scene where she's confronted about just who Freddy Kreuger is, but the serial killer part of their conversation never made it into the final movie. It never even made it onto the DVD and Blu-ray releases for the movie. It did, however, get included on the film's Laserdisc release in the '90s and has recently resurfaced for scrutiny thanks to Bloody Disgusting.

Had this actually stayed as Kreuger's official back story, it would have changed things substantially. Part of what makes Kreuger so scary, aside from the whole dream haunting thing, is that he was a twisted victim in a way. He was certainly guilty of being a bad, bad man, but his conviction didn't come from a court. It came from an angry mob who burned him alive in his own furnace, and in doing so created an even bigger evil than they could have ever imagined. That violence escalates violence, evil breeding evil in small town America aspect of the first Elm Street is subtle, but it's key. It turns Kreuger into a monster created by the very people who tried to cheat the system and destroy him.

But if Krueger had been straight up slaughtering kids left and right in this small town, it not only removes all subtlety, but it just really convolutes things. Why couldn't he get convicted? Wouldn't Nancy know about all these old murders already? Also, why did her mom lie to her about ever even having a sibling? It's pretty wonky stuff, and we're glad it never became part of the final story, but it's interesting to look back and see how easily a movie can cross the line from simplicity to "Hold on, wait, what?" Had that dialogue stayed in the movie, it would have changed things drastically. Would it have stopped Elm Street from being a big hit? No, Wes Craven was way too good at scaring people for that to be the case, but it would have fundamentally changed the way people look at, and talk about, Freddy Kreuger.


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