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The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )



Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

Studio and Year: Image Entertainment 2010
MPAA Rating: NR
Feature running time: 239 minutes
Genre: Documentary, Horror

Disc Format: BD-50 (2 Discs)
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
Subtitles: N/A
Starring: Heather Langenkamp, Wes Craven, Robert Englund
Directed by: Daniel Farrands, Andrew Kasch
Written by: Thommy Hutson
Music by: Sean Schafer Hennessy
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: January 21, 2014
"don't... fall... asleep"

Film Synopsis:

Explore the origins of "dream demon" Freddy Krueger in this award-winning documentary that takes you behind the scenes of the most frightening and imaginative horror franchise in motion picture history!

My Take:

I'm a sucker for Horror flicks, have a pretty cool collection of old Fangoria magazines, Todd Macfarlane Movie Maniac figures, collectable DVD's, imports and posters. I eat up special features, making of documentaries and books. After seeing the newly released "Crystal Lake Memories"- A Friday the 13th doc that was a few hours long, I was blown away with how detailed and in-depth and how much cool info was packed in. I knew a lot of the stories of that series, but still really loved watching it all. I have a DVD copy of Never Fall Asleep, the documentary about the A Nightmare on Elm St. series made from the same folks as Crystal Lake Memories. Having been so busy I had yet to watch it, maybe it was in secret hopes of the Blu-ray release, so when Image Entertainment sent me it for review (though a bit late!) I was excited to give all four hours a spin.

The DVD/Blu-ray releases of the A Nightmare on Elm Street series had some decent special features, but never went deep enough, especially on the sequels. This is a must have for fans, having newly filmed interviews with all the major players including Wes Craven, Robert Shaye, Robert England, Heather Langenkamp and the list goes on. Unfortunately they didn't get Johnny Depp or Patricia Aquette, but the others did speak of them. It covers all the films as well as Freddy Vs. Jason and the short lived anthology series, Freddy's Nightmares. Freddy Kruger is such a cool, scary, dark yet funny and iconic horror villain that he can support a documentary of this magnitude. We see the changes in his make-up and look, differences in his infamous glove and learn many cool insights from Freddy himself, actor Robert Englund.

Covering the films origins, the special effects, budget, choices or writers and directors as well as the technical details and special effects, this four hour documentary is chock full o' info and anecdotes to keep the deepest of fans as well as the mildly interested informed and engaged. Kudos to the films directors Daniel Farrands & Andrew Kasch, and writer Thommy Hutson on their painstaking and detailed work on this as well as Crystal Lake Memories, and for giving us fans something special to enjoy and add our collections.

Parental Guide:

Bloody violence, graphic nudity, sexual content, language and some drug use.

AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**

Audio: 78

(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Dynamics:

  • Low frequency extension:

  • Surround Sound presentation:

  • Clarity/Detail:

  • Dialogue Reproduction:

Video: 82

(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Resolution/Clarity:

  • Black level/Shadow detail:

  • Color reproduction:

  • Fleshtones:

  • Compression:

Never Sleep Again comes to Blu-ray from Image Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 15.8 mbps and DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 sound that has an average bitrate of 2.2 mbps

Never Sleep Again looks great in high definition, though it uses many old and less than perfect bits of archival footage from a wide variety of sources. The newly minted interview sections look nice, with highly discernible details in facial features and a decent amount of shadow details resolved in there dimly lit design. The lossless DTS-HD stereo track is underwhelming, but conveys what it needs--a whole lotta talkin'. The score sounds nice, but could have benefited from some surround support, and it would have been nice to use the center channel for the talking heads as well.

Bonus Features:

  • Commentary with Directors Andrew Kasch and Daniel Farrands, Writer Thommy Hutson and Cinematographer Buz Danger Wallick

  • (HD) Extended Interviews

  • (HD) First Look: Heather Langenkamp's "I Am Nancy"

  • (HD) For the Love of the Glove

  • (HD) Fred Heads: The Ultimate Freddy Fans

  • (HD) Horror's Hallowed Grounds: Return to Elm Street

  • (HD) Freddy vs. The Angry Video Game Nerd

  • (HD) The Music of the Nightmare: Conversations with Composers and Songwriters

  • (HD) Elm Street's Poster Boy: The Art of Matthew Joseph Peak

  • (HD) A Nightmare on Elm Street in 10 Minutes

  • (HD) Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy Teaser Trailer


Final Thoughts:

Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy is a must have for collectors, film buffs and worth a watch for fans of the series. It is a bit of a specialty item, but it is a quality documentary as well as a quality release in the A/V department. I will watch this again sometime, as well as watch the makers other ridiculously long documentary on Friday the 13th. I peeked at the DVD for comarison and though a decent upgrade, I am not sure the double dip is with the expense. Packed with a disc of extra features, any Freddy fan should easily get their fix here.

Lee Weber
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

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