'Candyman' says the name again, mixing horror with social commentary

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(CNN)"Candyman" juggles rather a batch successful creating a sequel to an astir 30-year-old movie -- an adjacent tougher feat erstwhile 1 manus is simply a hook. The effect is simply a thought-provoking contemplation connected radical injustice done the prism of horror, somewhat awkwardly serving its bloodier expectations portion draping the communicative implicit the bones of the original.

Producer Jordan Peele mastered the cardinal portion of that operation successful "Get Out," and collaborating connected the publication with Win Rosenfeld and manager Nia DaCosta (already tapped to helm Marvel's upcoming "The Marvels"), does truthful little successfully here. It's worthy noting that the movie was primitively scheduled for a June 2020 merchandise earlier pandemic-related delays, and its themes surely would person resonated conscionable arsenic loudly amid the summertime of wide Black Lives Matter protests.

For those who mightiness request a "Candyman" refresher course, the 1992 movie starred Tony Todd successful the rubric role, arsenic a ghostly fig haunting the Cabrini-Green lodging projects successful Chicago. The movie begins successful the aforesaid wide location, which has since been gentrified, with creator Anthony McCoy (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) and his assemblage manager woman Brianna (Teyonah Pariss, besides destined for "The Marvels") occupying a lavish flat there.

    Desperate for an thought for an upcoming exhibit, Anthony is told by Brianna's member (Nathan Stewart-Jarrett) astir the story surrounding the Candyman, whose hook-handed shade volition look and termination you if you look successful a reflector and repetition the sanction 5 times. (Ironically, the rubric "Get Out" represented a sly effect to anserine things that radical bash successful fearfulness movies, this full "daring the supernatural killer" happening being a premier illustration of them.)

      Anthony's probe brings him into interaction with a longtime nonmigratory of the vicinity ("Fear the Walking Dead's" Colman Domingo), who offers further humanities insights astir unit against Black men successful the area, drafting the creator deeper into a rabbit spread that begins to endanger his relationships and sanity.

      The filmmakers person done an admirable occupation weaving the mythology unneurotic portion employing inventive touches -- similar shadiness puppets arsenic characters sermon the past -- to research traumatic events without exploiting them.

      The main situation comes successful servicing the appetites of fearfulness fans, and "Candyman" fares little good connected that score, including a grade of predictability astir who's successful danger, and moments of grisliness that -- adjacent with efforts to finesse definite elements -- astir can't assistance but consciousness obligatory juxtaposed with the bigger ideas astatine play.

      Then again, Peele's caller projects ("Us" and "Lovecraft Country" serving arsenic premier examples) person helped invigorate fearfulness arsenic a conduit into the Black experience, an attack emulated by different movies similar "Antebellum" and the caller Amazon series "Them." "Candyman" fundamentally takes a acquainted title, circles backmost to earlier iterations of that dynamic, past seeks to bring it crashing into the 21st century.

        To its credit, the movie manages that successful a crisp 90-minute package. Yet for each that the movie does well, successful trying to equilibrium its cerebral, visceral and sequel aspects, "Candyman" appears to person bitten disconnected a spot much than it tin chew.

        "Candyman" premieres Aug. 27 successful US theaters. It's rated R.

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