Bob McCully’s review published on Letterboxd:
As we have now entered October I am finally able to convince my girlfriend to watch a bunch of horror movies (she is easily scared by them) and with that she chose this film for us to watch last night. She knows that this series is pretty important to me so figured she'd start at the beginning.
Now, I generally prefer 3-6 as they're a bit more over the top and fun watches. Going back to the very first film just reinforced that for me.
Don't get me wrong, I still like this one but damn is it ever rendered tame by the oddball antics of what happens in the following sequels.
It's definitely more of a serious horror film and Freddy is more restrained and legitimately creepy as opposed to the goofball he becomes over the course of the series. The effects though are hit or miss, often times revealing how low budget this film was, and the same goes for the music. You either get the iconic theme for the series or you get some cheesy score that cheapened the moments that were trying to be disturbing.
Even just viewing the film as a standalone piece I had a hard time loving it. It's really on par with majority of 80's horror flicks, so it's clear that the power of Freddy Krueger came more from the entire series than just this specific flick.
It's a great concept and it is the seed to what is probably my favourite horror series of all time so I will always cherish it. Sadly though it pales in comparison to what follows. I know that's controversial to say but I have to express how I feel. And ya know what? My girlfriend thought it was kinda tame too.