Never Sleep Again

Production Year: 2010
Release Date:  01/21/2013
Studio: Image Entertainment

The 80's were a very important time for our beloved genre, there were suitable entries to both the zombie and vampire subgenres along with the slasher boom which brought forth such classics as The Burning, Sleepaway Camp, Friday the 13th, and of course A Nightmare on Elm Street.  While other famed fictional killers would make their return in that glorious decade, it was Freddy and Jason that ruled the 80's bypassing the norm and becoming household names.  In the past I've covered Jason's story, now it's time to open up the Krueger book in the form of Never Sleep Again- one of the most in depth horror documentaries you will ever watch.

Never Sleep Again much like Crystal Lake Memories, covers the Elm Street series film-by-film also giving ample coverage of the TV show and Freddy's descent into pop culture.  How does one cover a 240 minute documentary in one meager review, that is the question.  The flick starts off with the obvious inception of Freddy Krueger, it's a story fan's have heard time and time again.  As young boy director Wes Craven peered out the window to see a creepy old homeless man walking down the street.  Craven spied on the vagrant, assuming the man could not see him; that's when the ol' bum stopped in his tracks, turned around, and stared right back.  Years later Wes read a newspaper article about a young boy who died in the midst of a nightmare, the boy was found with a coffee pot and caffeine pills hidden in his room.  Fred Krueger would eventually spawn thanks to those two solid inspirations.

No one was prepared for the success of A Nightmare on Elm Street, out of no where a small independent horror film that no one believed in was reeling in blockbuster numbers.  New Line Cinema fast tracked a sequel which would be met with similar success.  The rest, as they say, is history.  A Nightmare on Elm Street would become one of the most successful film franchises to ever grace the big screen.  The film led into countless book and comic book tie-ins, bobble heads, action figures, matchbox cars, Freddy would even get his own television series in Freddy's Nightmares.

Even with the lengthy run time I found the viewing of this documentary to be a real breeze.  It's easy to assume that this is a documentary suited for only those Elm Street obsessed fans, but the documentary is so well put together that I feel any general fan of the horror genre could sit back and get a a lot of enjoyment out of this flick.  Kudos to all of those involved, you've set a new standard for horror-based documentaries.

So...Is this worthy of an upgrade?  In short, if you don't already own the DVD, yes.  The PQ/AQ show an improvement when compared to the DVD.  It's a jump, but not a full fledged leap.  There's more detail present in the high definition transfer and that quality also carries over to a majority of the extras features.  For people who currently own the DVD you need not rush to the stores for this one.  For those who've yet to purchase this on DVD I can give my full recommendation for the blu-ray.  

Extended Interviews (HD 01:40:55) - With the DVD the extended interviews are broken down by film on a secondary menu, sadly this is something that was not carried over to the blu-ray.  The extended interviews are presented as one big feature with each film/sequel getting a chapter stop.  I'm not sure why the presentation was changed, and while there are chapter stops for each film I still feel the DVD setup was a much better presentation.

First Look: Heather Langenkamp's I Am Nancy (HD 06:41) - A nice extended preview for Langenkamp's own documentary I am Nancy.  The film can be purchased here, and I'm looking forward to eventually checking out the full feature.

For the Love of the Glove (HD 54:14) - A featurette about the famous bladed glove.  A chunk of it is about the "lost glove" from ANOES and one fan's quest to obtain it.  That same fan is pretty much the go-to guy when it comes to Nightmare gloves and shows off his collection.  Various interviews with cast, crew, and fans about the creation and popularity of the glove.

Fred Heads: The Ultimate Freddy Fans (HD 12:49) - Are you the ultimate Freddy fanatic!?  More interviews with the cast while a few fan's show off their collections.

Horror's Hallowed Grounds: Return to Elm Street (HD 23:09) - Sean Clark takes us back to some of the famous filming locations of the first film.

Freddy VS. The Angry Video Game Nerd (SD 05:30) - I love AVG, and this particular episode was always a favorite of mine.  There's a short intro before the actual episode with James Rolfe discussing the Elm Street series and his web series.

Expanding the Elm Street Universe: Freddy in Comics & Novels (HD 47:50) - Interviews with a number of authors regarding Freddy's expanded universe.

The Music of the Nightmare (HD 13:39) - A nice featurette on the music of the Elm Street series.  Each film had a different composer and a handful of them are on hand to discuss their inspiration for their work in the series.

Elm Street's Poster Boy: The Art of Matthew Joseph Peak (HD 07:30) - Matthew Joseph Peak discusses his start with the Elm Street series, the artist would eventually lend his talent to 5 of the series' posters.

A Nightmare on Elm Street in 10 Minutes (HD 10:06) - Ten minutes of various cast members (throughout the series) repeating some of their more memorable lines.

Never Sleep Again Teaser Trailer (HD 00:55)

Are you a die hard Freddy nut?  A fan of documentaries?  You say you've got 240 minutes to burn?  Then sit down, shut up, and watch this documentary!  You'll think me.  This documentary set a new precedent that other similar productions now have to (attempt) to live up to.  Do not miss it.