Of all the subgenres of horror, slasher movies have the most conflicted relationship with the supernatural. Some of them make do without any supernatural elements whatsoever; others incorporate it in an ambiguous manner, like how in the original Halloween it isn’t clear whether Michael Myers is truly a supernaturally unstoppable force or merely possesses above average toughness.
And then, just sometimes, a slasher movie will go full supernatural, at which point the usual slasher stalk-and-slay dynamic changes comprehensively. A Nightmare On Elm Street might be the most famous example of that, alongside some of the more offbeat Halloween and Friday the 13th sequels: here’s some more obscure ones.
The opening, with the nighttime shot prowling around the exterior of the house set against a very John Carpenter-esque synthesiser soundtrack, is a transparent rip-off of Halloween. We even get a child killing someone in their household, just like Halloween! This time, however, there’s extenuating circumstances; young children Lacey (Natasha Sciano) and Willy (Jay Wright) are peeping on their mother (Gillian Gordon) starting to get it on with her boyfriend, who is never named in the movie and only credited as “the Lover” (Howard Grant). An annoyed Lover decides that an appropriate, proportionate response to this gagging and tying Willy to Willy’s bed. Lacey gets a big ol’ kitchen knife and frees Willy; Willy takes the knife and kills the Lover, which I guess in a way is freeing himself and Lacey.
Years later, and Lacey and Willy – now played by Suzanna Love and Nicholas Love respectively – are all grown up. Willy was traumatised by his childhood deeds, and has never spoken since the killing. Lacey is doing better; she’s married to local cop Jake (Ron James) and the pair have a child of their own, little Kevin (Raymond Boyden). Lacey’s family, along with Willy, live in the sprawling house of Aunt Helen (Felicite Morgan) and Uncle Earnest (Bill Rayburn), who took them in after the killing and have provided them with a loving home.