Josiah Morgan’s review published on Letterboxd:
Hoop-Tober 2.0: Film #13 (Unplanned)
Patricia Arquette is the latest star of a starmaking franchise, by comparison to the first two this is the first film in the franchise truly about sleep as your one true escape and what happens when that escape is corrupted by an omnipresent malevolent force. This is a film filled with true energy whether it be lighthearted or not, around every corner is a new filmic innovation, with every plot beat is a new revelation and whilst the performances are never brilliant (aside from early glimpses of Arquette's talent) they're somewhat endearing. Narrative drive takes the front seat here above formal aspects and character development, leading to a slower, slightly unexpected pacing which ultimately works in the films favor as it subverts the expectations I had going in.
Oh, it also has the typically bonkers Nightmare On Elm Street trademarks - a melting tricycle or a house attacking Arquette (this also has one of the strongest screen-within-a-screen sequences I've seen in a long time, I just love things being reflected on screen as they are in real life and reminding us that we're watching a film).
The Nightmare franchise and this film in particular works on a different plane than most horror films as generally there's a subconscious rationalization that we can just get away, turn off the screen, go to bed and it'll all be over, however in this case the crime scene is your head, and it's a terrifying prospect - how do you escape when your own mind is against you?