4 September 2005 | lost-in-limbo
Ain't bad for a sequel.
In New Orleans during the Mardi Gras festival an author who wrote a book about the legend of the Candyman is murdered and someone who he had a confrontation with that night is accused of the act. Although the accuser's sister a schoolteacher tries to discover who actually did kill the expert and learns that the legend of The Candyman is for real. She has conjured up the mythical serial killer by repeating his name in front of the mirror five times. This is where the horrifying nightmare begins and some surprising revelations occur.
The sequel to the underrated original you could say its just another slasher because it lacks the psychological edge, but I thought it was a reasonably good one and above the usual routine slasher. Sure it doesn't have the hypnotic power and impact of the original, but it still delivers enough well arranged shocks and has an mildly interesting plot that delves a little a bit more into the Candyman's background. With it showing us flashbacks of the painful ordeal he faced and how he became this legend. The plot isn't entirely focused on the Candyman legend (like the original was), with the investigation leading more towards the sister finding out about her family secrets while trying to get her brother of the hook and basically the legend is woven into it. Though, it's not as smart, or incredibly gripping this time around, with it leading more towards graphic violence and having some tedious moments slowing down the pace. It starts off rather slow, but it gets better as the story moves along and some moderate surprises pop up, but really it isn't that hard to guess to where the story is heading and some things just don't add up. The cloud of mystery around the Candyman just seems to be gone, or I should say far less evoking, with it seamlessly rehashing a lot material and ideas which were done so more effectively in the first film. On a whole it just doesn't capture the intense power and poetic tussle of the original's subtle plot and elegant dialogue. The material seems to want to force-feed us the information and the narration by the damn DJ was really starting to get on my nerves after awhile. But nonetheless, it's a bloody treat (literally) and at least it's not just another slasher involving horny/drunk teenagers with a shallow plot.
The look and direction of the film was alright, but it lacked the polish production values and the touch of detail and class. Atmosphere was slightly disappointing, because the dreaded build up is only effective in short pockets because it's was replaced by too many jump out scares that eases the tension. Although saying that it did provide some freaky sequences, but that was on the behalf of Todd's towering presence. Also there's a nice amount of nasty deaths and blood splattering for gore fanatics. Great makeup achieved and you got to love those special effects. The score from the original is used again and it creates that sense of mystic and doom that flooded the original. On show again is strong camera-work that truly catches your eye. The performances are fair with two reasonable standouts. Easily Tony Todd as the harrowing Candyman, who lives the part as the tormented soul perfectly and Veronica Cartwright turns in a surprise performance. Kelly Rowan as the heroine isn't bad either. The dialogue isn't that riveting, but Todd's echoing voice causes chills to run up your spine. Something about this fictional legend is quite impressive in my eyes. He lives on the pain and the people's fear of him. This is what gives him power and keeps his legend alive. Really, he is nothing but a heart lorn soul.
Overall, it doesn't hold up to the original, but as for a sequel, it's not all that bad.