Jonathan Hatting’s review published on Letterboxd:
[This review might contain spoilers]
Candyman (1992) is one of my favorite films of all time. It is a great culmination of style and story with a beautiful score, a brilliant villain portrayed by the alluring Tony Todd and general great sense of its genre.
Candyman (2021) is a different story. There is a lot of good to be said: Nia DaCosta does on the whole well as the film's director, the film was generally engaging and the cast is all talented. In terms of the horror it's mostly a good film. But somewhere along the way the story and message got muddled and it seems to have forgotten what the original film was trying to say. To put it shortly: this film seemed to forget the trauma that Candyman represents and instead it felt more like it was trying to make Candyman: the superhero origin story as a way of kickstarting the CCU (Candyman Cinematic Universe). The story has so much potential especially considering how it actually was gentrified in the 90's, and the film just never truly taps into that potential.
I guess one of the aspects I like most about Candyman (1992) is the way it makes me consider its characters' traumas and the environment they inhabit. All of that is sidelined in the new film and instead having the viewer make up their own thoughts it instead springs its ideas in their face.
I put off watching this film for a little while as I was scared of being disappointed by it and sadly I was even though it wasn't all bad. But to be honest the true atrocity is that this film does not contain nearly enough Tony Todd.