Wednesday, November 26, 2014

In Memoriam: Chase Porter

That's me in the corner, that's me in the spot-light...

Chase Porter might be one of the most impactful deaths ever done in a slasher film.  One thing in New Nightmare that works so well, is that none of its victims are deserving of their fate at all.  The other major death happens when Dylan's nanny is trying her best to protect him.  Chase is Heather's husband, based on Langenkamp's real life beau, and from what we see he's good a that and being a father.

When Heather is discussing her dreams, he's not quick to dismiss them or fired up about her being crazy.  We actually get scenes of him talking it out with her and giving her a rationale solution to what her fears may actually be.  The two of them have realistic adult and parent conversations in the film, raising its sense of grounding and humanity.  All of this making it the most unfortunate and undeserving of circumstances when he is killed in a car accident.
Normally in an Elm Street film, we'd have the car crash, cut to a funeral and then move on with the story, with only our main character feeling some extra stress as they complete the challenge.  Not here, we take every possible step through this real life horror and nightmare with Heather.  We go from the police arriving at her house to inform her, to the coroner and then to the funeral.  And the coroner scene has always got me with how genuine Heather Langenkamp is her and she has one of the most realistic vomits I've ever seen on screen.

The remainder of the movie does have Freddy's itching closer to snatching Dylan and conquering Heather, but we are also dealing with Heather and Dylan coping with the loss of Chase.  Much of the outside perception from people on Heather's behavior due to Freddy, people discuss and put blame to dealing with the loss of her husband.  His death is really focused on and rounds out a lot of how characters are in the movie.  Its a death that matters and that's the key as to why it and this movie is so effective.

Here's to Chase!

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