This is my favourite non-A Nightmare On Elm Street film of all time. The book is entertaining as well, but the film surpasses it in every darn way. The Tim Burton movie is terrible. Sure, it sticks a little closer to the book, but the entire tone was changed. Case in point: compare Wilder's witticisms with Johnny Depp's hushed voice and "I don't lyke you." Christ.
Anyways, I'm really sad to hear about the director's passing, as he has affected my life in a huge way for someone whose name I had never known until now.