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CANDYMAN (1992)

Directed by Bernard Rose

Starring Virginia Madsen and Tony Todd

From the opening scene panning   over the rooftops of Chicago as Philip Glass' eerie organ music plays in the background, you know this film is going to kick ass. And kick ass it  doesuntil the end, which was contrived and seemed to conform to some film executive's idea of how a horror movie is supposed to end.

Director Bernard Rose is known for making another kick-ass horror movie"Paperhouse"but actually outdoes himself with this film, which is based on a Clive Barker short story.

Grad school student Madsen decides to conduct a study on an urban legend about a character named "Candyman" that local ghetto dwellers believe in. After being assaulted by a gang, the leader of which calls himself the "Candyman," she concludes that it's just a mythuntil Tony Todd shows up and she finds herself accused of brutal murders she knows she did not commit.

Rose has made a genuinely frightening film by honing in on what exactly what it's like to be a raving paranoiac. You're not sure whether Madsen's character is really being tormented by a boogey man or simply going nuts. Madsen is also great in her role. The film also focuses on racial tensions between the Chicago African American populationsome of whom are depicted as believing in the Candymanand Madsen's character, who is noticeably afraid of them. Gritty, intelligent, realistic and frightening, "Candyman" is an absolute must-see for any horror fan worth his salt. 

Tragically, producers were never able to follow-up the excellence of this film. Two lame-ass sequels resulted.

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