9. Sequel-Friendly Ending - A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)
Die-hard Freddy defenders may refuse to acknowledge any fault with Wes Craven's 1984 game-changer, but perhaps it's time to remove our fan goggles for a moment and face the fact that its ending isn't quite up to scratch. A Nightmare on Elm Street is the result of passionate and outside-the-box creativity; it has an ingenious concept which is complimented with masterful storytelling. And what is the most fitting way to round off one of the most innovative horror films of the decade? With unimaginative and ham-fisted sequel-bait carelessly tacked on to the end - that's how.
Should the film prove to be a success, New Line requested that the ending be left wide open with the possibility of building a franchise. The result is the ridiculous effect of a laughably rigid dummy being pulled backwards though a window. As hilarious as the effect is, the tacky, forced, commercially friendly ending is a huge let down following such an imaginative passion project as this film. It really feels like an injustice to what Craven initially set out to achieve, all for the sake of unapologetically milking its sequel potential.
The conclusion to Freddy and Nancy's final showdown is also not as strong or as satisfying as it ought to be, instead feeling like a bit of a cop out. To weaken one of cinema's most powerful villains by 'reclaiming his power' is rather underwhelming. Both characters deserved better.