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  • Writer's pictureGareth Bradwick

Candyman ★★★★

Nia DaCosta

Starring Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Teyonah Parris, Colman Domingo, Tony Todd

Jordan Peele has been a huge part of the new post-horror sub-genre that’s seen the likes of Get Out and Us change the way we think of horrors in general. Up to now they have centred on new stories, but this time Peele has turned his typewriter towards a story revisited. We join events in this movie as Anthony Mccoy (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) learns of the true story behind the Candyman. What follows is the gradual unravelling of his past and his sanity.

Before this review goes any further, it’s worth noting that I hadn’t seen any of the Candyman content or original movie before going in to see this. The folk law and rules were completely new to me. If you are the same as me, you are in for a ride!

With Candyman we see what we’re dealing with early on. Probably because most people know who the terror is from the original, we do away with any formal introduction here. Usually in horrors we wait until the end to see what’s been scaring us all along so for someone new to the story, seeing Candyman early on worked to heighten the tension later. Subsequently when you see a glimpse of that coat in the mirror you knew what was coming.

And it’s in those moments where the Candyman is present that this movie truly terrifies. It’s a little while coming, but when he’s in the room you feel it; those tiny glimpses in the mirror are just enough to ensure that you never say Candyman five times at your reflection, just in case.

All the actors are on point here, with Yahya naturally the highlight. However, his partner, played by Teyonah Parris, cements the story and assumes the role of the audience's compass through the madness. Parris plays this part brilliantly and lives up to everything that’s going on around her.

This movie, if you can’t get to a cinema, deserves to be viewed in the dark, with the volume up loud, and in the company of friends. It’s a shining example of how horrors can get under your skin in increasingly new and exciting ways without becoming clichéd. Although there is a lot of light shining on Jordan Peele right now, it’s the Director Nia DaCosta who deserves the praise for bringing the words and terrors to life in such an original way.

Candyman available in cinemas now

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