"His name is Freddy Krueger. He was a child murderer before he died, and after he died... well, he became something worse."
Nancy Thompson
A Nightmare on Elm Street 3
Dream Warriors
A Nightmare on Elm Street 3 - Dream Warriors (1987).jpg
Title: A Nightmare on Elm Street 3
Dream Warriors
Directed by: Chuck Russell
Written by: Wes Craven
Bruce Wagner
Frank Darabont
Chuck Russell
Produced by: Wes Craven
Stephen Diener
Robert Shaye
Sara Risher
Steve Thompson
Music by: Angelo Badalamenti
Cinematography: Roy H. Wagner
Edited by: Terry Stokes; Chuck Weiss
Distributed by: New Line Cinema; Smart Egg Pictures
Released: February 27th, 1987
Rating: R
Running time: 96 min.
Country: USA
Language: English
Budget: $4,500,000 [1]
Gross: $44,793,222 (domestic) [2]
Previous: Freddy's Revenge
Next: The Dream Master

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors is an American horror film of the slasher sub-genre directed by Chuck Russell. It is the third film in the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise and was produced by New Line Cinema and Smart Egg Pictures. It was released theatrically in the United States on February 27th, 1987. This film marks the return of actress Heather Langenkamp, reprising the role of Nancy Thompson from the first A Nightmare on Elm Street. It also marks the acting debut of Patricia Arquette, who takes on the role "Final girl" Kristen Parker. Once again donning the glove, hat and sweater of Freddy Krueger is Robert Englund, ever-ready to slash away at a new group of unsuspecting sleepers. In this installment, Freddy begins tormenting a group of young patients at the Westin Psychiatric Hospital in Springwood. Nancy finagles her way onto the hospital staff in her efforts to protect the "last of the Elm Street children".

Plot[edit | edit source]

Suicide attempt or fatal nightmare?

Teenager Kristen Parker is terrified of falling asleep. When she does sleep, she dreams of strange dilapidated houses and little girls on tricycles that lead her to the nightmare realms of Freddy Krueger. In order to stay awake, Kristen imbibes heavy doses of Maxwell House coffee and Diet Coke, but even that's not enough to keep her safe from Freddy. In dreamtime, Freddy attacks her in the bathroom, slicing her wrists open. Kristen's mother Elaine finds her and thinks that Kristen has tried to commit suicide.

Kristen is taken to the Westin Psychiatric Hospital where she is placed in a program that specializes in sleep disorders. When the orderly Max tries to sedate her, Kristen goes completely berserk and attacks Max as well as Doctors Elizabeth Simms and Neil Gordon. Kristen's psychotic behavior is only alleviated when Westin's newest intern, Nancy Thompson enters the room and calms her down.

Later on, Nancy talks with Doctor Gordon. She expresses her desires to work with a group of troubled teens under Gordon’s watchful eye. Gordon takes an instant shine to Nancy, but he is troubled when he discovers that she is taking Hypnocil, an experimental drug that induces dream depravation.

Gordon introduces Nancy to the rest of the group. She meets the ultra-violent Roland Kincaid, the mute Joey Crusel, the crippled Will Stanton, the junkie Taryn White, the wisecracking sleepwalker Phillip Anderson and the wannabe actress Jennifer Caulfield. Each one introduces themselves during group session. Nancy is impressed by the kids and regards each one of them as being a survivor in their own right.

Later that night, the sedated Kristen falls asleep and enters the ephemeral locale of the old Thompson house. Freddy bursts through from the floor as a hideous giant serpent and begins to consume her. Terrified, Kristen screams out to Nancy, the only person whom she trusts. Surprisingly enough, Kristen's cries bear fruit as she manages to pull Nancy Thompson into her nightmare. Nancy leaps upon the Freddy-snake with a piece of broken glass and it is only then that the two old adversaries recognize one another. Both Kristen and Nancy wake up and Nancy notices a cut on her left hand from the broken glass shard. Nancy later interviews Kristen and learns that she has the fantastic ability to pull others into her dreams. Nancy recognizes that each dreamer has a special dream-power unique to his or her personality.

A puppet on a string.

That night, Freddy chooses his next victim. He visits the room of puppeteer Phillip Anderson and makes long vertical gouges across his arms and legs while Phillip lies helpless in bed. In a gruesome display of power Freddy pulls the veins from Phillip’s arms and legs and begins manipulating him like a marionette. He walks Phillip down the hall and towards one of the hospital towers. Since Phillip is known to be a chronic sleepwalker, no one takes notice as he shambles down the hall.

In a separate wing of the hospital, Joey and Will go the window in their room where they can see Phillip teetering on the ledge of the tower. They try to get someone to help Phillip but there is no time. Freddy cuts the puppet strings (veins) and Phillip falls to his death. The staffs of Westin regard Phillip's death as a suicide but Phillip’s friends know better. He was murdered.

At the next group session, Nancy reveals what she knows about Freddy Krueger. The kids are astonished to discover that they have all been dreaming about the exact same man (a detail the late Phillip had commented on during their last session). Doctor Gordon is skeptical and believes the kids to be the victims of group hypnosis.

The next victim on the list is wannabe actress Jennifer Caulfield. She stays up in the lounge watching television and burning cigarettes into her wrist to keep from falling asleep. She eventually dozes off and Freddy comes for her. Freddy emerges from the wall-mounted television set and uses robotic arms to lift Jennifer up, smashing her face into the picture tube. Jennifer is killed instantly, her body hanging from the remains of the suspended TV.

A few days later, Doctor Gordon takes the kids to attend Jennifer's funeral. While everyone is in mourning, Gordon finds a nun wandering the cemetery. The nun is Sister Mary Helena and she warns Gordon that he must find faith in order to defeat the evil that is upon them. Nancy arrives to speak with Gordon and Sister Mary Helena disappears.

At Nancy's urging and without the consent of Doctor Simms, Gordon has the kids partake in group hypnosis. From there, each of the patients discovers that they can harness particular dream abilities unique to each of them. In the dream realm, Kristen is an athlete, Kincaid has super strength, Will is a wizard and Taryn is a street tough. Joey meanwhile, wanders off to go sew his wild oats. He meets up with a well-endowed nurse who proceeds to take her clothes off. While Joey is lying on the bed, the nurse projects disembodied tongues from her mouth, tying him to the bedposts. The nurse then transforms into Freddy and continues to torture the poor, mute Joey. In the real world, the other patients wake up, but Joey lapses into catatonia.

Jennifer's big break in TV.

The hospital staff is enraged by this lapse in protocol and both Neil Gordon and Nancy are fired. As Gordon is packing up his stuff, he notices the shape of Sister Mary Helena appearing in the window of a closed down wing of the hospital. Gordon investigates and finds the nun wandering about the ruins. She explains to him the origin of the dream demon.

Apparently, sometime in the 1940s there was a nurse named Amanda Krueger who administered aid to the most depraved and insane of all of Westin's patients. During the holidays, she was inadvertently locked within the psycho ward and was victimized by the raving lunatics. She was raped repeatedly and the incident left her with child. That child was Freddy. Sister Mary Helena described him as the “Bastard son of a thousand maniacs.” She tells Gordon that the only way to stop him is to find his remains and bury him in hallowed ground.

Gordon tells Nancy of this encounter and Nancy beseeches her father Donald for the location of Freddy's remains. Lieutenant Thompson was the one who actually hid Freddy’s body away all those years ago. After making a pit stop at a church to procure some holy water and crosses, Thompson and Gordon go to an old junkyard to disinter Freddy's bones while Nancy returns to the hospital.

Nancy learns that Kristen has been sedated and put in the quiet room. Unfortunately, this will leave her defenseless against Freddy. Nancy hypnotizes the group into the dream dimension in order to save Kristen. They break her out of the quiet room and proceed to find Joey who is still in a coma tied over a hell pit. Freddy attacks them en masse and the battle is on.

Meanwhile, Thompson and Gordon find Freddy's bones stuffed inside the back of an old Cadillac. They begin to dig a pit so that Freddy can be laid to rest.

"Sorry, kid. I don't believe in fairy tales!"

Back in the dream world, the kids are split up and must rely on their dream powers to save them. Freddy approaches Taryn in a seedy alleyway. She holds her own fairly well and manages to stab Freddy in the side with her switchblade. But Freddy turns his fingers into hypodermic needles and plunges them into Taryn's arms. Taryn overdoses on whatever drug Freddy administrates and quickly dies. Next on the list is Will Stanton. Will is not only capable of walking, but he can cast magic spells just like the characters from his favorite role-playing games. He sends a ball of shimmering energy towards Freddy, but the killer barely pauses before ramming his claws into Will's chest. Nancy and the others rescue Joey and Joey discovers his dream power. Speaking for the first time, Joey learns that his own voice can cause massive destruction. At this point, Freddy seems to become aware that someone is tampering with his mortal remains and leaves the dream world to confront the new menace.

Back at the junkyard, Freddy's spirit inhabits his own skeleton and he fights against Thompson and Gordon. Thompson is killed but Gordon manages to evade Freddy’s attack with minimum damage.

After killing Thompson, Freddy returns to the dream world to confront the patients again. He skewers Nancy with his claws and turns to take out Kincaid, Joey and Kristen. But Nancy is still alive. She leaps upon Freddy's back, forcing his claws to pierce his own stomach. At this point, Gordon revives and is able to keep Freddy's bones in hallowed ground. He sprinkles the bones with holy water and brands it with the cross.

Freddy feels this effect in the dream world and before long, his spirit disappears into nothingness. Nancy dies soon after and the kids are left to mourn her passing.

A few days later, Doctor Gordon visits the cemetery again. This time it is to attend Nancy's funeral. As he turns away, he sees Sister Mary Helena. He goes over to thank her for her advice, but as he does so, he sees her body literally disappear in front of a gravestone. Doctor Gordon learns that Sister Mary Helena was actually the ghost of Amanda Krueger.

Cast[edit | edit source]

Home Video[edit | edit source]

  • The film is also included on disc 3 of The Nightmare on Elm Street Collection, which was released on September 21st, 1999. Features on the standard DVD include widescreen (1:85:1) or full screen (1:33:1) formats, closed-captioned English Dolby Digital 5.1 and Mono soundtracks, DVD-ROM original screenplay, "Jump to a Nightmare" scene selection, a "Dream World" trivia game as well as information on the cast and crew.

Soundtrack & Music Video[edit | edit source]

Dokken vs. Freddy.

The Official Motion Picture Soundtrack to A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors was released as an audio CD in 1987 and produced by the Varese Sarabande label. In addition to sample scores from the film by composer Angelo Badalamenti, the soundtrack also included two tracks by the 1980s hard rock band Dokken. The title track was called "Dream Warriors", which was also made into a music video in 1987. The song was released as a single and written specifically for the film. The other song by Dokken is "Into the Fire", which first appeared as track 7 off their 1984 album Tooth and Nail.

A music video for "Dream Warriors" was produced in which Dokken made an appearance. They are seen performing the song composited against mock-up sets from the movie. The video also includes clips from the film itself. Throughout the course of the video, Freddy Krueger appears and attacks each of the band members one by one, dragging them away. At the conclusion of the video, Freddy awakens in his own bed and realizes that his entire experience with Dokken was just a dream. Breathing a sigh of relief, Freddy exclaims "Whew! What a nightmare!"

Notes & Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Principal filming for A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors began on October 15th, 1986 and concluded in November.
  • In the novelization of the film, Kristen Parker's first name is slightly changed to Kirsten.

Body Count[edit | edit source]

See also[edit | edit source]

External Links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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Film Series
This article relates to one of the films in the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. This template will categorize articles that include it into the A Nightmare on Elm Street films category.
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