Based loosely on the urban legend if you say “Biggie Smalls” three times in a mirror it will summon the ghost of Chris Wallace, Candyman is an urban-gothic tragedy romance horror flick. I’m sure we’ve all seen this one before so I’m not going to get into a whole lot here, just going to share some thoughts and hit the high notes.
I kinda fibbed when I said it’s based on the Biggie Smalls legend, that’s actually from an episode of South Park, but wouldn’t it be cool if it were true? The script was actually adapted from the short story The Forbidden by Clive Barker from his phenomenal Books of Blood series. I have read the story but it’s been many moons ago, so I can’t really remember it, but I do think it was a lot different.
Tony Todd is phenomenal as the lead role of the villain protagonist Candyman. He is a classically trained theater actor and knocks this role out of hte park. He’s a classic Barker villain: deadly, tragic, seductive, and regal. Though for my money it doesn’t hold a candle to his role as sleazy con-man Reverand Zombie in Hatchet II.
Everything in this movie is the making of a horror classic: a simple story, basic “rules” to survive, a deadly villain, and an iconic score by Bernard Rose. Though the score may not be as well known as other slashers, I’d say it holds up pretty well and was even used to excellent affect last season on FX’s horror collage anthology show American Horror Story.
Mr. Blonde’s sister Virginia Madsen does a good job as love interest/victim Helen. Her cheating husband is a jerk and we want her to have a happy ending although we know it probably won’t. Her selflessness makes her an endearing horror heroine and we can see why Candyman gets jungle fever for her. His offers of “Be my victim” is something we want her to take him up on because quite frankly he’s a better man than her husband.
I caught it this morning as part of the FearFest on AMC, and it’s the first time I’ve seen it in a few years. Yeah, I do have it on DVD but it’s been a bit since I watched it. I first saw it when it hit VHS when I was in like middle school and it absolutely terrified me. I still think it’s a very well done movie with all the makings of a classic and is a staple of 90’s cinema. If you haven’t ever seen it, you can’t call yourself a horror fan.