Critically maligned when it was first unleashed on the world and was bashed for years by fans, “Freddy’s Revenge” is a movie that caught the fan base by surprise. With the advent of the internet, fans have been able to appreciate the sequel to one of the most influential horror movies as a classic in its own right. It’s a sentiment that’s managed to spread along the entire horror community as more queer horror fans have found “Freddy’s Revenge,” allowing Freddy Krueger to reach a part of society that reached beyond dreams and in to the sub-conscious in to ideas about self acceptance and repressed sexuality.
Sadly, one of the souls to experience the harsh repercussions of immense homophobia during the eighties was Mark Patton, the star of “Freddy’s Revenge.” A rising star before the film was made, Patton managed to take center stage in the film, and just like that he was gone. With the making of the hit documentary “Never Sleep Again,” producers sought out Patton who is now a recluse. This meeting with the very private Patton is where “Scream, Queen!” took life and gave us a look in to the fall out and legacy of one of the most polarizing horror films ever made.
“Scream, Queen!” is a surprisingly somber albeit flawed dedication to not just the original movie, but Mark Patton who became something of a sacrificial cow for the movie’s backlash initially. Directors Roman Chimienti, and Tyler Jensen spend about eighty percent of the film looking back on Mark Patton’s career and how he spent most of his life in the closet. Once they manage to get him to unwind, he’s very honest about his experiences, even recollecting a make out session with David Bowie on a staircase. If you want to learn the cogs and machinery of “Freddy’s Nightmare,” you’re a lot better off watching “Never Sleep Again,” as the pair of director’s venture more in to Patton’s personal life. It’s a bit presumptuous to proclaim that “Freddy’s Revenge” killed Mark Patton’s career, as most, if not all, of these slasher films were never made with the intent to jump start anyone’s acting career.
They were made as disposable money makers, and anything beyond that was a result of very hard work and desperately pushing back against being pigeonholed. That said Mark Patton doesn’t seem to have any proclamations that he was destined to be a blockbuster star in spite of the documentary, as his spiritualism grants him a mind set that he served a different purpose. The big draw for “Scream, Queen!” is watching how much more accepted homosexuality has become since the eighties, and how Mark is able to confront the original film’s director over issues involving pinning the brunt of the film’s criticism on Patton. It’s a tense confrontation that closes out what is a well rounded and satisfying documentary, altogether. For the LGTBQ audience and horror buffs, it’s an arguably essential documentary that warrants viewing and thoughtful conversation.