If I had to chose between Steven King and Clive Barker, I’d go with Barker … definitely Barker. Candyman showcases Barker’s originality. King typically does his take on every existing genre while Barker comes up with off the wall stuff no one else has already done. Candyman is one of the more original monster films and monsters to come out of Hollywood since the glory days. He’s not a vampire, not a werewolf, not a giant anything, he not just a killer who can’t be killed. He’s not exactly a ghost, he’s more of a demon or is he something else?
Viginia Madsen stars as a university graduate student doing research into urban legends. She hears a story about a woman who was murdered in a nearby housing project and decides to do some first hand research. Ms Madsen and her associate visit the site of the murder and find something like a shrine. She learns that if you look in a mirror and say “Candyman” 5 times he will appear. Guess what the ladies do. Don’t these people ever learn?
Tony Todd steals the spotlight as the title character. He mostly stands there waiving his hook and speaking without moving his lips. Oh that’s right, he’s speaking telepathically. Whatever he’s doing … it’s effective. Anyway he shows up and things get bloody. A dog get’s it’s head cut off and a baby is abducted. Someone gets a hook to the throat. Then Candyman releases his bees. It’s a good story told in a manner sure to keep you hooked right up until the ending.
Candyman is both original and clever. The story moves along at a brisk pace with a satisfying finish. The ending was a bit of a twist, even though it was the clear cut direction the film was heading. It was just hard to believe that Hollywood wouldn’t chicken out and come up with some type of lame alternative to the demanded ending. Candyman may not be a perfect film, but it scores high marks in areas most films only manage to get a passing grade on. In summary … Candyman is a semi modern classic.