Real Time Review of Candyman: Day of the Dead

I watch a lot of horror movies. I like them. People ask me why I want to watch that type of stuff, with all the horrible things that go on in the world, but that’s kind of exactly why. Supernatural horror is a getaway for me. It takes me away from the horrors of the real world and gives me some meaty (oh, pun SO not intended, y’all) imagination fuel to go chew on. Does that make me weird? Maybe. Does this surprise you, that I might be weird? Probably not.

So I am currently in day umpteen of a migraine, but since I’ve learned to function so fabulously with these sucky headaches and I’ve tried sleep, quiet rooms, nice baths and more, I figure the horrid glare of the computer screen and a loud, obnoxious horror movie can’t hurt me more than I already hurt. Nice theory.

Imagine my delight when I flipped through the OnDemand menu and found Candyman: Day of the Dead. I realize that might sound like an odd statement, but I just loved the first two of those flicks. The original Candyman was actually scary, and Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh was so much better than I expected it to be so I was pretty pumped when I started this movie. The Candyman was a Clive Barker character, so how bad can it be?

About 20 minutes in I thought, “Holy crap, this is awful. I should blog about it.” Which brings us to now.

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This is not a good movie, folks. Even if you like horror movies, and even if you liked the first two, it just isn’t good. A few notable things:

Score

The first two films were atmospherically similar, mainly because of Philip Glass’s amazing scores. The music was beautiful, creepy, almost heartbreaking.

Adam Gorgoni did the score for this stinker, and while I have nothing against the guy, he didn’t even try to create something that was even half as cool and atmospheric as Glass’s simple masterpiece. There was some soothing flamenco music as the main character was making out with the gorgeous Jsu Garcia, who played an underdeveloped yet pivotal character in the film. Do we even call it a film when it went straight to video? Who knows? But, in a really convoluted way this brings me to my next gripe point.

Sloppy, Lazy Cultural Stereotypes

The movie takes place in (Miami?). There is a heavy Latin influence, with The Day of the Dead and everything, and it’s done pretty well although it fails to drive the plot forward, but that is sort of how the second one went with the whole New Orleans Mardi Gras thing. It provides a nice flavor and some good actors, so no complaints there. I did read an IMDB review that said it was poorly done, and that the old healer lady talked like Yoda but whatevs. Actually? The Day of the Dead thing does propel the plot because GOTHS kidnap the main character and take her back to their underground lair, where they plan to offer her up to Candyman as tribute because they, like, worship him all of the sudden. This is pretty bad in and of itself, but the king goth guy is SO bad. He’s like the love child of Ben Stiller, Keanu Reaves and Trent Reznor and he obviously went to the Keanu Reaves on His Worst Day School For Acting For Actors Who Want to Act Real Good. I actually stopped the movie there and rewound it a bunch of times to make sure it was as bad as I really thought. It is.

More Lack of Continuity

While it didn’t surprise me that the main character in the third installment was Caroline McCheever, daughter of Annie Tarrant, who was the main character in the second movie. Annie was played delicately, if not too sedately, by Kelly Rowan. She did a nice job, I guess she was too busy to reprise her role in this one. I mean sure, Caroline is 5 or 6 at the end of the second one and is obviously in her 20’s or 30’s (or 40’s – who can tell the true age of a Baywatch babe?) in this one, but they got Elizabeth Hayes to play Annie and she doesn’t really look old enough to be her mother anyway so, meh.

Also? They call the main character “Carolyn” all through the movie up until when Candyman shows up and says her name. Which is CAROLINE. Named after Caroline Sullivan, lover of Daniel Robitaille, who becomes Candyman after he’s killed by an angry mob + BEES. Angry mob + bees is a sucky way to die. In the origin flashbacks in Farewell to the Flesh Caroline Sullivan is played by Caroline Barclay. She’s played by Laura Mazur in Day of the Dead and the scenes are very late night Lifetime bom-chicka-wow-wow. It’s definitely a different portrayal. In Farewell to the Flesh they are all in love and tortured. In Day of the Dead they are all, well, you get it. It didn’t work for me.

Caroline

OK, I’m just going to say it. Donna D’Errico is not a very good actor. I won’t say anything about her appearance at the risk of insulting those Donna D’Errico fans out there (‘cept, BEWBS) but they got a cute Baywatch babe to scream a lot, and following in the footsteps of the awesome Virginia Madsen and then the totally acceptable Kelly Rowan, her character lacks dimension (except for BEWBS) and complexity.

So, to sum up, this is not a good movie. Tony Todd as the title character is consistent and creepy, as he should be, but considering the fact that he co-produced this film and then later went public saying he “didn’t care for it” he wasn’t enough to keep it in the same league as the second movie. And it couldn’t touch the first one. Just watch that one.

I got tired and sort of bored, so this might not have been interesting like I wanted it to be, so I submit this word cloud to entertain you. But since I couldn’t get the word cloud to work, the list of words I was going to use are:

BEWBS, whydoesthebetteractorblackfriendalwaysgetkilled? GREGOR!

and some more. The Gregor thing? This cop in the movie is played by Wade Williams and I was all “I have seen that guy somewhere before!” and it turns out it was, of course, on Buffy. Season 5. Gregor, the head of the knight guys that were out to fight Glory.

And with that, I show you exactly how big a nerd I really am.

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