A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987)

R | 96 mins | Horror | 1987

Full page view
HISTORY

       The film is sometimes referred to as Nightmare on Elm Street 3 or A Nightmare on Elm Street 3, although the full correct title is A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors.
       The following written quote by Edgar Allan Poe appears in the film’s opening onscreen credits: “Sleep. Those little slices of Death. How I loathe them.”
       End credits include the following written statements: “Special thanks to Doris Cutler, Producers of Plaything, Polaroid, L.A. Gear, Miller Beer, Ken Manson – Coca Cola, Hapsten, Lisa Brown – Travel Bound, Christopher Rogers Florists, Frank Gruber, Esq., Ben Zinken, Stephen Abramson, Michael Harpster, Barbara Theard – Bank of America, Elektra Records – Bob Krasnow, Mike Bone, Gary Casson, George Dassinger, Byron Hontaf, Brad Hunt, Robin Sloane, Chris Barden, Charles Ryan” and “Based on characters created by Wes Craven.”
       Dream Quest Images was misspelled as “Dreamquest Images” in the opening credits but was spelled correctly in the end credits. The song “Dream Warriors,” composed and performed by the band Dokken, was misspelled in the end credits as “Dream Warrior.”
       An item in the 21 May 1986 Var noted that the third film in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise would begin filming on 28 Jul 1986 with a budget of $3 million. In an interview in the 4 Mar 1987 HR, New Line Cinema president Robert Shaye reported that A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors cost $4.3 million to make, although charts in the 15 Aug 1989 HR and the 10 Aug 1992 Var ... More Less

       The film is sometimes referred to as Nightmare on Elm Street 3 or A Nightmare on Elm Street 3, although the full correct title is A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors.
       The following written quote by Edgar Allan Poe appears in the film’s opening onscreen credits: “Sleep. Those little slices of Death. How I loathe them.”
       End credits include the following written statements: “Special thanks to Doris Cutler, Producers of Plaything, Polaroid, L.A. Gear, Miller Beer, Ken Manson – Coca Cola, Hapsten, Lisa Brown – Travel Bound, Christopher Rogers Florists, Frank Gruber, Esq., Ben Zinken, Stephen Abramson, Michael Harpster, Barbara Theard – Bank of America, Elektra Records – Bob Krasnow, Mike Bone, Gary Casson, George Dassinger, Byron Hontaf, Brad Hunt, Robin Sloane, Chris Barden, Charles Ryan” and “Based on characters created by Wes Craven.”
       Dream Quest Images was misspelled as “Dreamquest Images” in the opening credits but was spelled correctly in the end credits. The song “Dream Warriors,” composed and performed by the band Dokken, was misspelled in the end credits as “Dream Warrior.”
       An item in the 21 May 1986 Var noted that the third film in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise would begin filming on 28 Jul 1986 with a budget of $3 million. In an interview in the 4 Mar 1987 HR, New Line Cinema president Robert Shaye reported that A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors cost $4.3 million to make, although charts in the 15 Aug 1989 HR and the 10 Aug 1992 Var listed the budget at $4.6 million. Articles in the 26 Feb 1987 LAT and the May 1987 American Cinematographer reported that this film would be New Line’s first national release. The LAT article noted that the first two films in the Elm Street franchise utilized subdistributors and were released in a regional pattern for cost-cutting purposes, but, in his HR interview, Shaye acknowledged that New Line was spending between five and six million dollars on prints and advertising for the third film’s national release. The LAT article also noted that merchandising efforts would include “Freddy” T-shirts, bubble gum, door posters, wall hangings and pillowcases.
       The film opened on Friday, 27 Feb 1987 and the 6 Mar 1987 NYT reported the movie was No.1 on its opening weekend, taking in $8,880,000 in its first three days. Shaye stated that the film’s opening was approximately fifteen percent higher than A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge. According to the May 1987 Box, the film also did well in its second weekend, dropping only 20-25 percent. The charts in the 15 Aug 1989 HR and the 10 Aug 1992 Var revealed that while A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge had a domestic gross of $30 million, A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors rose to a domestic gross of $45 million.
       Reviews in the 25 Feb 1987 Var and the 25 Feb 1987 HR noted that the film was Chuck Russell’s feature film directorial debut.
       The success of the first three films lead to a continuation of the A Nightmare on Elm Street series. For information on subsequent sequels and spin-offs, see entry for A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984).
More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
American Cinematographer
May 1987.
---
Box Office
May 1987.
---
Hollywood Reporter
25 Feb 1987
p. 4, 30.
Hollywood Reporter
4 Mar 1987.
---
Hollywood Reporter
15 Aug 1989.
---
Los Angeles Times
26 Feb 1987
Section VI, p. 1, 6.
Los Angeles Times
27 Feb 1987
p. 6.
New York Times
27 Feb 1987
p. 15.
New York Times
6 Mar 1987.
---
Variety
21 May 1986.
---
Variety
25 Feb 1987
p. 277.
Variety
10 Aug 1992.
---
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
New Line Cinema, Heron Communications, Inc and Smart Egg Pictures present
A Robert Shaye Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
Dir, 2d unit
1st asst dir, 2d unit
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Exec prod
Assoc prod
Line prod
Co-prod
WRITERS
Scr/Story
Scr/Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
Loader
Best boy elec
Elec
Post rigging gaffer
Rigging elec
The grips from hell
Key grip
The grips from hell
Best boy grip
The grips from hell
Dolly grip
The grips from hell
Grip
The grips from hell
Grip
The grips from hell
Rigging key grip
The grips from hell
Rigging best boy grip
Dir of photog, 2d unit
1st asst cam, 2d unit
Gaffer, 2d unit
Elec, 2d unit
Elec, 2d unit
Key grip, 2d unit
Grip and elec equip
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
Art dept coord
Storyboard artist/Visual consultant
Art dept prod asst
Art dept prod asst
Illustrator
FILM EDITORS
1st asst ed
2d asst ed
Apprentice ed
Apprentice ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dresser
Asst set dresser
Asst set dresser/Set dresser, 2d unit
Prop master
Asst props
Const coord
Lead carpenter
Set carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Carpenter
Scenic artist
Painter
Painter
Painter
COSTUMES
Cost des
Ward supv
MUSIC
Mus ed
Mus supv
Addl mus
Addl mus
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
Supv sd ed
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
Dialog ed
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
VISUAL EFFECTS
Mechanical spec eff
Image Engineering, Inc.
Spec visual eff
Visual eff supv
Spec eff bone ghouls
Spec eff bone ghouls
Spec eff carpenter
Stop-motion skeleton and marionette eff
Eff photog supv
Stop-motion puppet const
Marionette const
Miniatures
Motion control supv
Prod coord
Eff photog
Eff photog
Eff photog
Eff photog
Matte artist
Eff rigging
Eff rigging
Opt supv
Opt compositing
Opt line-up
Visual eff prod mgr
Mechanical eff
Spec eff coord
Lead tech
Mechanical des
Mechanical des
Mechanical des
Eff tech
Eff tech
Eff tech
Eff crew
Eff crew
Eff crew
Eff crew
Eff crew
Eff crew
Eff crew
Eff crew
Eff crew
Eff crew
Main title seq des and dir
MAKEUP
Krueger makeup and eff
Spec makeup eff sequences
Spec makeup eff sequences
Key makeup
Asst makeup
Key hairdresser
Asst to Greg Cannom
Asst to Greg Cannom
Asst to Greg Cannom
Asst to Greg Cannom
Asst to Greg Cannom
Asst to Kevin Yagher
Asst to Kevin Yagher
Asst to Kevin Yagher
Asst to Kevin Yagher
Asst to Kevin Yagher
Asst to Kevin Yagher
Asst to Kevin Yagher
Asst to Mr. Shostrum
Asst to Mr. Shostrum
Asst to Mr. Shostrum
Asst to Mr. Shostrum
Asst to Mr. Shostrum
Addl makeup eff
Asst to Mathew Mungel
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Exec in charge of prod
Asst prod mgr
Prod coord
Loc mgr
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Driver
Extras casting
Casting asst
Prod accountant
Asst accountant
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Asst to dir
Craft services
Craft services
First aid
Post prod supv
Scr supv, 2d unit
Scr supv, 2d unit
Prod asst, 2d unit
Catering
STAND INS
Stunt coord
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
ANIMATION
Stop-motion anim
Anim eff
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on characters created by Wes Craven.
AUTHOR
MUSIC
Music from "Nightmare on Elm Street I" composed and performed by Charles Bernstein.
SONGS
"Dream Warrior," composed and performed by Dokken, available on Elektra/Asylum Records & Tapes
"Into the Fire," composed and performed by Dokken.
PERFORMER
COMPOSERS
+
DETAILS
Release Date:
1987
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 27 February 1987
Production Date:
began 28 July 1986
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
color by Deluxe®
Duration(in mins):
96
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Kristen Parker waits for her mother, Elaine, to return home and stays awake by making a papier mâché house. Kristen falls asleep but “awakens” in front of a boarded-up house just like her model. She follows a girl inside where Freddy Krueger, a man with a finger-knives glove, almost catches her before she screams herself awake. In her bathroom, Kristen sees Freddy in the mirror as the cold water handle grabs her arm while the hot water handle sprouts knives and slices her wrist. Elaine finds Kristen holding a razor, having apparently slit her wrist. At the psychiatric hospital, Dr. Elizabeth Simms tells Dr. Neil Gordon about Nancy Thompson, a new staff member who specializes in nightmares. They are interrupted when Kristen becomes hysterical but Nancy arrives and calms her. Neil tells Nancy about teen patients at the hospital who have various sleep disorders but share a nightmare about a boogeyman. When Nancy drops her purse, Neil is surprised to see prescription Hypnocil pills. Max, an attendant, gives Nancy a tour of the facility and introduces her to Phillip, who makes puppets, and Kincaid. Nancy goes to Kristen’s home to pick up her suitcase and the papier mâché house. Neil discovers Hypnocil is an experimental drug to suppress night terrors. Kristen falls asleep and finds herself back inside the boarded-up house as a giant snake-like Freddy attacks. Kristen screams for Nancy and pulls her into the dream. When Nancy stabs the snake-like Freddy, he recognizes her and Nancy tells Kristen to get them out of the dream. The next morning, Nancy confirms that ... +


Kristen Parker waits for her mother, Elaine, to return home and stays awake by making a papier mâché house. Kristen falls asleep but “awakens” in front of a boarded-up house just like her model. She follows a girl inside where Freddy Krueger, a man with a finger-knives glove, almost catches her before she screams herself awake. In her bathroom, Kristen sees Freddy in the mirror as the cold water handle grabs her arm while the hot water handle sprouts knives and slices her wrist. Elaine finds Kristen holding a razor, having apparently slit her wrist. At the psychiatric hospital, Dr. Elizabeth Simms tells Dr. Neil Gordon about Nancy Thompson, a new staff member who specializes in nightmares. They are interrupted when Kristen becomes hysterical but Nancy arrives and calms her. Neil tells Nancy about teen patients at the hospital who have various sleep disorders but share a nightmare about a boogeyman. When Nancy drops her purse, Neil is surprised to see prescription Hypnocil pills. Max, an attendant, gives Nancy a tour of the facility and introduces her to Phillip, who makes puppets, and Kincaid. Nancy goes to Kristen’s home to pick up her suitcase and the papier mâché house. Neil discovers Hypnocil is an experimental drug to suppress night terrors. Kristen falls asleep and finds herself back inside the boarded-up house as a giant snake-like Freddy attacks. Kristen screams for Nancy and pulls her into the dream. When Nancy stabs the snake-like Freddy, he recognizes her and Nancy tells Kristen to get them out of the dream. The next morning, Nancy confirms that Freddy is real and Kristen’s papier mâché model is of Nancy’s Elm Street home. At group therapy, Neil and Simms introduce Nancy to the rest of the teenage patients: Will, in a wheelchair after a jump; Jennifer, who wants to be a TV actress; Joey, who does not speak; and Taryn, a former drug addict. Nancy tells Neil that the teens are in physical danger from their dreams and he should prescribe Hypnocil, but he refuses. That night, Phillip is asleep when his marionette morphs into Freddy and slices Phillip’s arms and legs, grabs the veins and uses them to control Phillip like a puppet. Freddy forces Phillip to a rooftop and the other teens watch helplessly as Freddy drops Phillip to his death. Simms wants to sedate everyone but Nancy argues they would be defenseless against their dreams. Simms is surprised when Neil prescribes Hypnocil. One night, Jennifer watches television to stay awake but Freddy emerges from the television and smashes Jennifer’s head into the screen. At Jennifer’s funeral, Sister Mary Helena approaches Neil and says that the teens can be saved if the unquiet spirit is buried. Nancy and Neil lead an unofficial group session where Nancy tells the teens about Fred Krueger, a child murderer who was burned alive by the Elm Street parents. Six years ago, Freddy murdered Nancy’s friends in their dreams and almost killed her. These teens are the last of the Elm Street children. Kristen can pull them into her dream and, if they each use a special power from their favorite dream, they can defeat Freddy. Neil tries group hypnosis but it doesn’t seem to work. Nancy wants to try again but Neil disagrees. Joey sees Marcie, a sexy nurse, in the hallway and follows her. In the room, balls suddenly float and everyone realizes they are dreaming. The teens have special dream powers: Will has regained the ability to walk and is a Wizard Master; Kristen does gymnastic moves; Kincaid bends metal; and Taryn is deadly with switchblades. In a bedroom down the hall, Marcie undresses and, as she kisses Joey, she pulls his tongue out. He tries to hold onto it, but the tongue flies out of his mouth and ties his arm to the bed. Another tongue flies out of her mouth and ties his other arm. Freddy appears and completely “tongue-ties” Joey to the bed. The mattress drops away, revealing a hellish pit below. He tries to scream but cannot. In the group room, lights explode and the walls close in. The door suddenly opens and Simms enters to find everyone asleep and Joey collapsed in a coma. Neil and Nancy are fired but, as Neil leaves, he sees Sister Mary Helena in an abandoned ward where the criminally insane were kept until the 1940s when a girl on staff was accidentally locked inside. The girl, Amanda Krueger, was raped by the inmates and her son, Freddy, was deemed “the bastard son of a hundred maniacs.” Freddy was murdered but no body was found. Sister Mary Helena tells Neil to find Freddy’s remains and bury him in hallowed ground. When Neil tells Nancy about the nun’s story, Nancy reveals that her father hid Freddy’s remains; however, her father, Thompson, refuses to help. Hearing that Kristen was sedated and needs help, Nancy goes to the hospital while Neil forces Thompson to take him to the auto salvage yard where Freddy’s bones are hidden. Max refuses to let Nancy see Kristen but lets her visit the others. Nancy tries group hypnosis again and puts the teens in Kristen’s dream. Freddy’s knives suddenly slash the walls and Kristen is back in her bedroom as her mother returns home. Elaine’s date, however, is Freddy, and Kristen barely escapes after he cuts off her mother’s head. When Taryn finds herself in a dark alley with Freddy, she pulls out her switchblades but Freddy’s fingers turn into syringes and he overdoses her. Freddy sends a barbaric wheelchair after Will, who summons his wizard powers to destroy it. Will turns his wizardry on Freddy but he is overpowered by Freddy and dies. Nancy, Kristen and Kincaid meet at a doorway that leads them to a boiler room. Meanwhile, Neil and Thompson reach the Cadillac where Freddy’s body lies. In the boiler room, Joey is strapped over a fiery pit as Freddy slices him free, and Nancy reaches Joey just as Freddy cuts the last tongue. She grabs Joey’s hand and Kincaid pulls them up while Kristen distracts Freddy. He’s about to kill Kristen when Kincaid knocks him back with a pipe. Freddy strangles Kincaid until Nancy stabs Freddy with a metal pole. Freddy laughs as he pulls the pole out and reveals the souls of children trapped in his body, fueling his strength. Freddy suddenly vanishes from the boiler room as Neil and Thompson bury his body in the salvage yard. Freddy’s skeleton arises, kills Thompson and knocks Neil into the grave. Nancy, Kristen, Kincaid, and Joey find themselves in a mirrored hallway. Freddy appears in every mirror and the various images grab Nancy, Kristen and Kincaid but Joey uses his dream power to scream and break the mirrors. A shower of light descends and Thompson’s spirit appears. Nancy hugs her father, but it is actually Freddy and he stabs her. Freddy turns on Kristen but Nancy stabs him with his own knives. In the salvage yard, Neil sprinkles holy water on Freddy’s bones and, in the room, Freddy’s body disappears with a flash. Nancy dies in Kristen’s arms. At Nancy’s funeral, Neil sees the nun in the distance. She disappears but he discovers the grave of Amanda Krueger who later became Sister Mary Helena. Later, Neil has the papier mâché house by his bed and, as he falls asleep, a light goes on in its window. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

TOP SEARCHES

CASABLANCA

During World War II, Casablanca, Morocco is a waiting point for throngs of desperate refugees fleeing Nazi-occupied Europe. Exit visas, which are necessary to leave the country, are at ... >>

CITIZEN KANE

Seventy-year-old newspaper tycoon Charles Foster Kane dies in his palatial Florida home, Xanadu, after uttering the single word “Rosebud.” While watching a newsreel summarizing the years during which Kane ... >>

REAR WINDOW

Laid up with a broken leg during the height of summer, renowned New York magazine photographer L. B. “Jeff” Jeffries enters his last week of home confinement, bored and ... >>

RAGING BULL

In 1941, at a boxing match in Cleveland, Ohio, pandemonium breaks out when Jake La Motta, an up-and-coming young boxer, loses a decision to Jimmy Reeves, suffering his first ... >>

CITY LIGHTS

At an outdoor dedication ceremony, a tramp is discovered sleeping in the arms of a statue as it is being unveiled before a crowd. He is chased into ... >>

The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.