Critic Consensus: Though it ultimately sacrifices some mystery in the name of gory thrills, Candyman is a nuanced, effectively chilling tale that benefits from an interesting premise and some fine performances.
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Critic Reviews for Candyman
Candyman is an uppper-register horror item that delivers the requisite shocks and gore but doesn't cheat or cop out.
Like so many post-Val Lewton horror films, this 1992 feature starts out promisingly while the plot is mainly a matter of suggestion, but gradually turns gross and obvious as the meanings become literal and unambiguous.
The film's spooky atmosphere is accentuated by Anthony B. Richmond's cinematography and Philip Glass's score.
Madsen is a much better actress than is usually found in such a role. However, if you don't like splashes of blood or bees swarming out of bodies, you may want to think twice about this one.
Audience Reviews for Candyman
An eerie, scary and surprisingly efficient horror film that invests in an atmospheric score and an intriguing mystery about a living rumor who can only be real through his spooky legend - and it firmly keeps its roots in the real world while the gore never feels unnecessary.
Adapted from the chilling mind of Clive Barker, "Candyman" is much more than a story about an urban legend turned serial killer. Barker looks at the everyday, the mundane, and twists it into submission. He doesn't believe in the suburban, or the normal. Through the clichés he sees the gruesome world of dreams, the outer membrane that surrounds us all, and from that he cultivates a horror tradition that lends itself to the grotesque. In this film, his tensest buildup to date, he shows martyrdom in the face of evil. Virginia Madsen is a graduate student who searches for the legendary Candyman in the ghetto of South Chicago, inevitably finding him. The story revolves around her seduction, and eventual sacrifice for the good of the community. The film is great for the fact that it builds up its villain, and also sets a mood unlike other horror films. The seduction mirrors the old "Dracula" films, and yet is much bloodier for the benefit of slasher fans, bridging traditions and creating a terrifying narrative where the boogeyman is real.
|Candyman:||They will say that I have shed innocent blood. What's blood for, if not for shedding?|
|Candyman:||Heleeen. Be my victim.|
|Candyman:||Be my victim.|
|Jake:||Candyman's in there? My friend Charlie says so. A boy got killed there.|
|Helen Lyle:||Who was he?|
|Jake:||Ain't sure. Charlie, tell me he was weird.|
|Helen Lyle:||He was crazy?|