Candyman (2021) Movie Review

Nick74

Distinguished Member
There's often a thing with remakes, especially in the horror genre. Typically they take the subtext of the original and make it explicit. The end result is far less interesting and nuanced.

All the social commentary that's reportedly foregrounded in this updated version of Candyman is in the earlier film; it's just that those responsible for the original trusted that the audience would get there on their own.

There are exceptions, of course, such as the Kauffman directed Invasion of the Body Snatchers, which offered in my view more subtle and interesting social commentary than the original's trite red scare message.

While I'll reserve judgement on this new version of Candyman until I've seen it, I fear it'll fall into the category I described. I hope I'm wrong.
 

terencejames

Active Member
I'm going to be honest, seeing Peele's name attached to this doesn't inspire much confidence. I liked 'Get Out' but pretty much everything else I've seen with his dabs on has been just OK.
 

Ace Of Wands

Active Member
A fair review & score from someone who is a huge fan of the original I’d say. I haven’t seen it myself for many many years & can’t remember it at all. I am a fan of Peele’s work, so I must admit I am looking forward to seeing this.
 

richp007

Distinguished Member
Bit disappointed from that review. But then I wasn't expecting much anyway I guess. Horror remakes are often troublesome.

I have concerns over Peele. Feels like he might be treading the Shyamalan path. A tremendous break out film and then not hitting the mark really since (although Shyamalan did have Unbreakable too).
 

Mensy

Distinguished Member
I think everything Peele has done so far has been utter pap so wasnt expecting anything new from this reboot.
 

Coulson

Distinguished Member
There's often a thing with remakes, especially in the horror genre. Typically they take the subtext of the original and make it explicit. The end result is far less interesting and nuanced.

All the social commentary that's reportedly foregrounded in this updated version of Candyman is in the earlier film; it's just that those responsible for the original trusted that the audience would get there on their own.
I think you hit the nail on the head.

But before the eyes roll and the cries of those parts of the audience that want a little less politics with their entertainment take hold, as the transition into the modern day and the slow reveal of the Candymen legend is made, it becomes clear this is exactly the kind of socio-political commentary that this film should have had.
Not according to the other reviews I've seen mate :) To be clear I'm not one of those people who say films are purely for entertainment. That's obviously not true.

But the modern obsession with spelling out the politics of our time means that the film might not age well. Also as @Nick74 said, it reduces the potential for growth on rewatch. But the most common complaint I've seen about this film (from all sides) is that the film grinds to a halt for the point to be made. That's just bad film making.
 

Mark Costello

Distinguished Member
I think you hit the nail on the head.


Not according to the other reviews I've seen mate :) To be clear I'm not one of those people who say films are purely for entertainment. That's obviously not true.

But the modern obsession with spelling out the politics of our time means that the film might not age well. Also as @Nick74 said, it reduces the potential for growth on rewatch. But the most common complaint I've seen about this film (from all sides) is that the film grinds to a halt for the point to be made. That's just bad film making.
Interestingly for me, the film did both - it sets its stall out from the opening prologue with its obvious commentary but then it takes much more of a back seat through the rest of the film……in today’s climate it HAD to take a stance on its messaging because Candyman is about racial injustice. Granted the first film was a lot subtler but we live in a less subtle world. The film would have been damned for not making a statement about current politics and it made the right one right at the beginning.

But then sadly at it’s finale it just drops it on the audience again from almost out of nowhere with the subtlety of a sledgehammer. It just wasn’t needed to be rammed down our throats in the final minutes of the film at all because we’re all intelligent enough to have gotten the message after 85 mins…….it’s not just poor film making, worse, it doesn’t have faith in its audience.

As to it not aging well, that’s exactly the point I made in the review when I said this was a film made for NOW whereas the original was made for all time. So agree entirely that it might not age well at all……but then again sadly it might…..
 
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Coulson

Distinguished Member
The film would have been damned for not making a statement about current politics and it made the right one right at the beginning.
I don't think it would have. The proof of that is that the very people this was aimed at are criticising it for the same thing.

But then sadly at it’s finale it just drops it on the audience again from almost out of nowhere with the subtlety of a sledgehammer. It just wasn’t needed to be rammed down our throats in the final minutes of the films tall because we’re all intelligent enough to have gotten the message after 85 mins…….
Another reviewer says the script is bad but the final act just falls apart so there is some consistency to the criticisms.

As to it not aging well, that’s exactly the point I made in the review when I said this was a film made for NOW whereas the original was made for all time. So agree entirely that it might not age well at all……but then again sadly it might…..
Yep. I think of Veerhoven films like Starship Troopers or Robocop or Brambilla's Demolition man which on the surface are mindless vehicles but were anything but. They were way ahead of their time and that's what makes them timeless. Modern films have gone in the opposite direction.
 

Drax1

Distinguished Member
Although I saw the memorable original at the flicks, I'm more than happy to sit this out until it's part of a streaming subsciption. Curious to see it, but not that much based on the review.
 

Skull n Bones

Well-known Member
Just watched the original tonight again and have this booked for Tuesday. No more reviews til then but hoping it turns out ok.
 

mb3195

Distinguished Member
6/10 seems about right to me. Definitely no scares throughout though.
 

Nick74

Distinguished Member
So agree entirely that it might not age well at all……but then again sadly it might…..

Do you mean that the injustices depicted will prevail (in which case I agree that sadly they will)?

For clarity on my post above (and restating that I haven't seen the new Candyman film) my issue with remakes, reboots, updatings of "classic" texts is that they often strip away nuance. My difficulty lies not with the message but the often clumsy manner of its delivery.

The irony is this - fan communities obsessively unpack all forms of popular culture, keen to unearth every detail. When it comes to horror remakes, filmmakers might give them something more to dig into.
 

Mark Costello

Distinguished Member
Do you mean that the injustices depicted will prevail (in which case I agree that sadly they will)?

For clarity on my post above (and restating that I haven't seen the new Candyman film) my issue with remakes, reboots, updatings of "classic" texts is that they often strip away nuance. My difficulty lies not with the message but the often clumsy manner of its delivery.

The irony is this - fan communities obsessively unpack all forms of popular culture, keen to unearth every detail. When it comes to horror remakes, filmmakers might give them something more to dig into.
Absolutely - the specific injustices literally shown may very well continue, as might the anger behind them. I hope not, but I suppose the film makers can only make a film for now, whether or not it becomes timeless or a remnant of a past time is down to society.

And yes, that sadly is the case with this remake - there is no subtlety at all. While the film makers may state that they don't want the film to be subtle, that their message needs to be front and centre and rammed down as many throats as possible (and its decent box office so far may prove that this is legitimate), it does indeed render it a poor legacy to the first film.

But there's lots to get into - does this shift happen not just because of our different society but by other things, such as now we have a black protagonist, whereas the first film had a white one? Lots of inane character banter is now also firmly rooted in race - while this may be there to add some levity or some, excuse the pun, colour, it still keeps the entire film firmly about race and nothing else. Even the art/artist commentary and how this links back to the story telling and myth theme of the first film is shot through with the race lens because all the artwork depicted is about race.

It feels like there could have been a much broader thematic discussion - thoughts on legacy and fate for example, as well as African American's role in their own culture and how they choose to use and shape it through these stories and anger - that would have brought this much more in line with the first film........but instead the film makers went 'nah, we KNOW what our single overwhelming message is and we're sticking to it'.

I'd need to get into spoilers about the ending to explain this further so if you haven't seen the film, avoid the below......!
The final act sees an African American literally 'create' Candyman for real, revealing himself to be one of the film's antagonists and setting up a lovely twist on how the story of Candyman could indeed be weaponised by the local community itself. But before we've even really had time to get our heads round this, a group of white cops show up and just shoot everyone. And not just that, they then proceed to tell the only survivor that unless she tells authorities the cops were faultless, she will be implicated as an accomplice. Suddenly the film completely pivots back to 'white cops = bad' where the exploring the notion of the community itself using the Candyman legend was infinitely more interesting.

And if to then finally nail the coffin lid of the film firmly shut, the survivor looks in the mirror of the police car and says Candyman five times, making him appear, kill all the cops and leave her completely untouched, a massive about face on the whole Candyman legend and one that just doesn't work at all. So disappointing as it had all the bones of a solid ending, instead ending on a polemic rant.....
 
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Fake Shempz

Active Member
Another classic horror which did not need to be remade.

I remember seeing the original at the Odeon Swiss Cottage one evening and then watched The Bad Lieutenant straight after in a double bill.

Twas quite the evening.
 
Oh dear. I was very disappointed with this. For the majority of the short run time I felt bored. The original film had a nightmarish quality, a consistent creepy atmosphere, great performances (especially Todd & Madsen), excellent practical effects and a terrific score.
Plot wise this follow up (and it most definitely is a sequel) makes perfect sense, the main twist I guessed maybe 10 mins into film though. That’s about as it good as it gets, some icky body horror aside, there’s nothing in the way of scares or shocks. Performances range from bland to irritating, poorly served by a thunderously pretentious script complete with sledgehammered social commentary.
One of the biggest failures of the year for me.
3.5/10
 
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Kingchin

Active Member
I'm going to be honest, seeing Peele's name attached to this doesn't inspire much confidence. I liked 'Get Out' but pretty much everything else I've seen with his dabs on has been just OK.
A lot of people are mistakenly thinking Peele directs it when he is only one of the producers and his company part financing the movie. Jordan Peele has only directed two movies Get Out which was critically acclaimed.

And Us while not as good was still a decent movie above average. His next film directing Nope sounds interesting and we will see if he's a one hit wonder director or not. Myself I'll stick with the excellent original Candyman collectors edition on blu ray.
 
A lot of people are mistakenly thinking Peele directs it when he is only one of the producers and his company part financing the movie. Jordan Peele has only directed two movies Get Out which was critically acclaimed.

And Us while not as good was still a decent movie above average. His next film directing Nope sounds interesting and we will see if he's a one hit wonder director or not. Myself I'll stick with the excellent original Candyman collectors edition on blu ray.
He’s co-writer on Candyman as well tbf.
 

terencejames

Active Member
A lot of people are mistakenly thinking Peele directs it when he is only one of the producers and his company part financing the movie. Jordan Peele has only directed two movies Get Out which was critically acclaimed.

And Us while not as good was still a decent movie above average. His next film directing Nope sounds interesting and we will see if he's a one hit wonder director or not. Myself I'll stick with the excellent original Candyman collectors edition on blu ray.
I know he's only directed two movies but he's got a lot of producer credits and from what I've seen, they're all pretty average. I know he might not be directly responsible but it's his name being used to sell these movies. If they're all rubbish, he's going to run out of goodwill pretty quickly.
 

raduv1

Distinguished Member
The original film was quite pants if I remember at the cinema back in the day. It was a dim witted affair and rather shallow in its premise that much like all others focused on teens dying than the origin of this the review finds so good . I know we never felt the need to revisit it on home cinema release . Much the same here as may have a gander once its on a streaming service I subscribe to .

One would only go into this if its above the original film in story, production , uprick in horror, gore or mind fudge .

Considering this film gets a lower score than the awful original film ( also quote sh*te ) I would stay well away .
 
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The original film was quite pants if I remember at the cinema back in the day. It was a dim witted affair and rather shallow in its premise that much like all others focused on teens dying than the origin the review finds so good . I know we never felt the need to revisit it on home cinema release . Much the same here as may have a gander once its on a streaming service I subscribe to .
There aren’t any teens killed in Candyman (1992)
 

raduv1

Distinguished Member
There aren’t any teens killed in Candyman (1992)
There aren't any teens killed in any of these crap take sh*t films, that part of the circus is quite fun .

Bad film is a bad film whatever era , silly cult following on SM likes does not make a good film .

The original was not a good film .
 

raduv1

Distinguished Member
Pardon ?
There are in the new one.
Ah so this is better than the original then ? Reading the review I take it the reviewers has doubts. I have my doubts on the poor original film so this will be a film watched on a subscription, couple of weeks to go ...

I'm not one to have or need a review of a poor film or indeed a forum reinvent my veiw on a crap film .

The original is crap , big this up on

The Cat From out of Space was pants , new film will be pants as it was a poor concept from the start.

Oh my we went and saw this at the cinema much as we did Candyman. Bothe were below poor .
 
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