* FridgeBrilliance:
** Nancy's mother's drinking problem holds another layer besides straightforward self-medication when you realize that alcohol actually prohibits REM sleep.
** Tina mentions that nightmares sometimes foreshadow earthquakes; exactly what signifies Freddy's presence in ''WesCravensNewNightmare'' years later.
* FirstInstallmentWins: Widely regarded as the best film in the franchise and a landmark in horror films.
* HarsherInHindsight:
** At one point, Tina notes that nightmares foreshadow earthquakes. L.A. was hit by those during the filming of ''Film/WesCravensNewNightmare''. Interestingly, they [[ThrowItIn actually worked]] [[RealLifeWritesThePlot the earthquake]] into ''New Nightmare''.
** During the commentary, Creator/WesCraven notes that the old prison where they filmed was later condemned for asbestos pipes. He comments they would all die of cancer. Not so funny after his death of brain cancer in 2015.
* HilariousInHindsight
** Creator/JohnnyDepp tagged along to auditions for the film with a friend. Creator/WesCraven asked Depp to read as well, and Depp ended up being cast instead of his friend he was supporting. But fret not about the friend; 26 years later, Creator/JackieEarleHaley would go on to [[Film/ANightmareOnElmStreet2010 play Freddy Krueger himself]].
** Creator/JohnnyDepp getting killed off by a man with knives for fingers. Depp later gets out of ''[[Series/TwentyOneJumpStreet Jump Street]]'' by playing a man with [[Film/EdwardScissorhands scissors for hands.]]
** Nancy's boobytraps are pretty ''Film/HomeAlone''-ish.
** The GainaxEnding in which [[spoiler:Freddy is a car]] might remind 90s anime fans of the ending to the ''Anime/RevolutionaryGirlUtena'' movie, which is infamous for a similar... "twist".
** Freddy's actor ended up getting married in 1988 and he and his wife are still together. His wife's name? Nancy. [[Main/NotMakingThisUpDisclaimer No really.]]
** The BigBad is a RealityWarper who weaponizes his victims' worst fears and makes sure the AdultsAreUseless through sheer disbelief. Are we talking about Freddy or Literature/{{It}}?
* HolyShitQuotient: Glen's death.
* NightmareRetardant: At the end of the film, when [[spoiler:Freddy drags what is supposed to be Nancy's mother through the little window in her front door as a [[NotQuiteDead final scare]]. It's a [[{{Narm}} hilariously]] [[SpecialEffectsFailure obvious mannequin.]]]]
* RetroactiveRecognition: This was the first movie Creator/JohnnyDepp played in.
** [[Film/WhoFramedRogerRabbit Roger Rabbit]] is the lead doctor at the sleep institute where Nancy's dreams are studied.
* SpecialEffectsFailure: Freddy's stretching arms look rather shaky by modern standards. The mom mannequin at the end doesn't hold up either. In two scenes where a character jumps, you can see the mattresses.
** When Freddy is set on fire at the end, it is painfully obvious that it is a stunt double.
** In the scene just before Tina's death where Freddy chops his own fingers off, causing green ooze to spew from the stumps, it is painfully obvious that the effect is not working properly: only his pinky bleeds the ooze, even though he also cut off his ring finger. The problem is even clearer if you watch Freddy's face as the effect occurs- Robert Englund's eyes quickly dart back and forth from the camera to the hand, as though he's nervously observing the flub.
*** Robert's expression kind of works and even makes the event more horrifying if you consider that, in a certain way, Freddy looks as if he's ''excited'' about harming himself, and wants to see both his hand and Tina's reaction to it for his own enjoyment.
* TearJerker: Nancy's reaction to Tina's death:
-->'''Nancy''': You know Tina, she dreamed this was gonna happen... She had a nightmare, that someone was trying to kill her. ''(breaks down sobbing)'' That's why we were there, mom. She just didn't wanna sleep alone.
* VindicatedByVideo: The movie did solid box-office business for a low budget 1984 movie, but it was the home video sales that really demonstrated what a money-maker Freddy could be.
* SugarWiki/VisualEffectsOfAwesome: Glen's death and the ''epic'' geyser of blood that follows.
* WhatDoYouMeanItsNotSymbolic: While such notions have been lost with the overdone franchise, critics and film historians have stated that the movie represents the struggle young people have to see the distinction between fantasy and reality.
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