Candyman (2021) - Bee man takes on gentrification

Written and produced by Jordan Peele. Directed by Nia DaCosta.

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Lots of Clive Barker stuff getting remade lately.

Remake of classic Clive Barker horror movie: please don’t.
Remake of classic Clive Barker horror movie by Jordan fuckin’ Peele: yes, yes okay you have my attention. (Okay, not directed by, but still. Close enough.)

I respect Jordan Peele but I won’t be seeing this remake. I love the original too much. One of the few horror movies that I can recall actually scaring me, and some great performances by Virginia Madsen and Tony Todd. I’m open to being convinced that I’m wrong though.

His heavy involvement is about the only way I can see a remake doing anything worth the airtime.

Is Philip Glass still doing the score?

This seems to be less a remake, and more a Halloween 2018 style sequel to the original.

Wikipedia says it’s a sequel, not a remake.

The trailer looks okay, but I rarely watch horror movies. Too much stress.

Same here. I’m in. I will say that trailer was okay but not moving in a way that makes me jump up and down. That’s the one thing giving me pause is that fact that it isn’t Peele’s initial story here. I’m sure I’ll enjoy it, but for now I’m reserved until we get to see more.

Hmmm.

Spooky.

Let’s compare to the trailer for the original:

So is it a woke remake?

Also I have never seen the original Candyman. What do I need?

I saw this last night - it’s pretty good! It’s a bit too slick to actually be that scary, but it has some nifty set pieces. The very end didn’t quite land for me though.

A lot of the original is about race and class, so it was already “woke”. It’s more a case of being a lot blunter about it, and changing the perspective to a black one.

It’s also a direct sequel, and retells the broad strokes of the events in the original as a scary story, so you don’t need to know the original.

The original is really good though, so you should see it anyway.

I wasn’t impressed. Although I question your use of the term as a pejorative, I’d argue it’s less “woke” than the original film, which yes, did occur from a white doctorate student’s perspective, but felt much more in-touch with the lived experience of poor Black Americans than this film does, where every character is essentially a metrosexual artist or adjacent. The new Candyman does some interesting things to expand the lore of the first three films—expanding the concept of Candyman to not be so much about a single person as an idea that can incarnate itself in the form of anyone to help people make sense of the generational trauma of the Black American experience—but in a very real way, this makes the film a lot less tense, because there’s no longer a charismatic monster like Tony Todd’s Candyman to scare you through the film. All the movie did was make me appreciate how ahead of its time the original film really was.

Yes, this was the biggest weakness for me. I went into it wondering how they would get over that issue and the answer was that they sadly didn’t.

It just feels like they had a bunch of competing versions of the script and never really fully reconciled them.

Oh, sorry about that. I might have misused the term since I have never actually heard woke used in the physical meat space. I first learned about it only through a terribad buzzfeed video one time through the power of the Internet. So I guess it carries a pejorative since it links me back to that awful video.

Thanks for clarifying! Generally speaking, when people complain something might be “woke,” they are criticizing it for showing sensitivity towards issues such as race, gender, identity, and class. All things I’d argue we should be sensitive towards as a society, especially in the context of art, and all qualities that the original Candyman exhibited. People who consider themselves to be sensitive towards issues of inequality rarely refer to themselves as “woke” unironically.