Fan films are one of the most creative ways that fans express their passion and affection for something they love, and every now and then one comes along that stands out from the crowd. In Dreams, a fan film of A Nightmare On Elm Street, is one such creation.
You can watch it in its entirely above, and although it’s a mere six minutes long, it perfectly captures the essence of Wes Craven’s slasher masterpiece, telling a brief episode in the life of Cheyenne, a sleepwalking teenager with issues about her parents that soon become exploited. It’s the creation of director Cristian Tomassini and writer Silvio Marotta (a duo also responsible for the sinister short The Water Demon), and the pair had this to say about the reasoning behind adding to an already vast library of takes on the infamous dream demon:
“We wanted to pay homage to an era of sensational horror films, full of ideas and energy and with a visual content that has dictated the stylistic features of the genre for decades to come.”
Created with only a week of preproduction and a single day’s filming, the short is shot to look like it was captured on video in the ‘80s, including key imagery such as a creepy basement and flickering flame, with echoes of the famous rhyme heralding Freddy’s inexorable approach and personal fears dredged up from the darkest depths of Cheyenne’s repressed thoughts. To be honest, the look of Freddy himself is a little off, as it’s likely a pre-made mask bought from a shop, but when the rest of the film simmers with stark simplicity that perfectly resonates with the movies that inspired it, it can be forgiven.
The scope of any Nightmare On Elm Street tale is practically limitless, as the very premise involves exploring a terrifying and fantastical dreamscape formed by a person’s subconscious, but sometimes stripped-back minimalism can be the way to go, which In Dreams proves perfectly.