(1992, Dir. by Bernard Rose.)
Why It's Here:
Balancing on the line between the old-fashioned ghost film and the slasher film, Clive Barker's tale of the Candyman always has something unique up its sleeve. Anchored by Tony Todd's titanic frame and a haunting musical score by renowned composer Phillip Glass, Candyman is a one-of-a-kind horror film. But it's not all kills and scares, with a focus on urban legends and their place in cultures and societies serving as a fascinating companion to the horror trademarks of the film.
The Moment That Changes Everything:
Any moment in which Candyman surprises a potential victim is worthwhile, but the film's most haunting image occurs when he shows up in broad daylight, beckoning Virginia Madsen's Helen from the other end of a parking garage. Todd's booming voice should create unease in even the most cynical viewer.
It Makes a Great Double Feature With:
One of the central themes of the film - as with much of the horror realm - is to be careful what you wish for. In a roundabout way, it's the same kind of theme as Stan Winston's '80s monsterfest Punpkinhead. The urban legend comes to life and runs out of control in both films, and the sharp contrast between the settings and characters in the two films should make this double feature an interesting social experiment in poverty, revenge, and fate.
What It Means To Me:
My first blitz into horror of the R-rated variety occurred in the early 1990s, and Candyman stood tall as one of the shining examples of what horror is. It's an intelligent story that still feels like it came from a campfire tale of terror, and it still packs all of the punch that it did 20 years ago.