Director: Wes Craven
Stars: Heather Langenkamp, Robert Englund, Johnny Depp, John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Amanda Wyss, Jsu Garcia
Over the years, Freddy Krueger—played brilliantly by Robert Englund—has garnered acclaim more for his stand-up comedian qualities than his ability to inspire night terrors. It makes perfect sense, since Englund's brilliant portrayal of the child molester turned knife-glove-wearing dreamland serial killer fully embraces the character's morbid wit.
When writer-director Wes Craven first imagined Freddy for the franchise’s jump-off point, A Nightmare on Elm Street, the ideas bouncing around in Craven's head were equally sick and clever. While sleeping, people are at their most vulnerable, making it nearly impossible to stop Krueger from offing whomever he pleases in gory, imaginative ways. Furthermore, nobody can stay awake forever, so, eventually, whether it's after a week or two months or longer, you're going to enter Freddy's domain. And the outcome won't be ideal.
And if you’re a young unknown actor destined for Hollywood icon status, Freddy will kill you in grand fashion. The future icon in question is Johnny Depp, who’ll forever have horror street-cred thanks to his big-screen Elm Street debut and for his epic death scene—Freddy sucks Depp’s character into his bed and spits his blood out of it in a geyser: