Candyman ★★★

They love what we make. But not us.

Love to see Nia DaCosta driving her passion project. The voice behind it is clear. And I love to see women filmmakers doing horror. It’s one of the things I most like to see. A breezy 90 minute horror with themes and the content for 120 minutes, Candyman is visually sharp and carefully returns a Black horror icon to the cinema. My audience was largely nonplussed, had a couple walkouts, and when it abruptly ended, someone loudly sighed, “that’s it?!” and ran for the doors. Which is a Premium exit strategy but also a fair assessment of a good horror movie missing perhaps one more act that emphasizes the horror of it all. Where it does finish, however, is a fine point to be, with an effective loud bang (I’m so glad to see horror in a theater again!) and strobing lights (I had to put my hand over my eyes for this headache trigger, but not any of the horror.) I hope Nia DaCosta makes films for the cinema for a good long while. Candyman is all potential, and with few regrets. It has some structural problems, but it’s strong enough of an image and overall outcome, that we’ll be saying her name for a good long while, I hope.

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