In 1984 Wes Craven started his Freddy Krueger franchise with A Nightmare on Elm Street, which spawned countless sequels and knockoffs and influenced a generation of horror filmmakers, mostly for the worst. Like many of its subsequent films which it influenced, it takes an interesting premise and totally squanders it through tacky effects and overuse of gore as well as unbelievable and uninspired follow through. The story opens with a teenage girl awakening from a nightmare in which the severely burned and knife clawed Freddy was chasing her. She soon realizes that all her friends are dreaming of the same person and before she can do anything about it, she is brutally murdered in her sleep, seemingly by no one. As other friends begin to be killed, young Nancy begins to unravel the sinister mystery behind Freddy Krueger and fight to stop him before its too late. As mentioned, Craven had a a good idea here for his movie, but the execution is lacking and often makes no sense. The dream rules established in the film are often broken and Freddy comes and goes at will. The film does do a good job setting mood but it often resorts to cheap gore and scare tactics instead of earning its boo moments, while employing cringe inducing dialogue. It is also the debut film of Johnny Depp who delivers a bland performance which serves as a sign of things to come and makes you wonder what anyone saw in this young thespian. Despite its immense success, A Nightmare on Elm Street is a misfire that has been mistaken for being inspired.