A Nightmare on Elm Street

1984 was a strange and scary time to be a kid in America, with things like the (false) McMartin preschool Satanic abuse cases here in California and 17-year-old Ricky Kasso’s “Say you love Satan!” killings in Long Island. And although A Nightmare on Elm Street director Wes Craven deliberately changed his soon-to-be-iconic Freddy Krueger from a child molester into a (sort of) more palatable child killer to avoid explicit connections, the resonance was still there: growing up in the Ronald Reagan era-suburbs could be a life-or-death situation. No wonder this film got huge. An evil-for-the-sake-of-evil presence that attacks when you’re most vulnerable—and that no one can stop? That was the 1980s, dude—and if you actually were Ronald Reagan, it was the Soviet Union, too.

Wed., Oct. 12, 7:30 p.m., 2011

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