(Photo by TriStar/ courtesy Everett Collection)

13 Movies To Watch If You Can’t Wait For Candyman

Yes the bees! Candyman is back, and here’s the hook: Jordan Peele is on-board as producer, co-writer, and convincer of Tony Todd to return to the franchise as the malevolent, mirror-jumping, body-slashing spirit. (Or at least we think Todd’s back – that was him at in the reflection at the end of the trailer, right?).

The 2020 Candyman, which is directed by Little Woods helmer Nia DaCosta, is the latest installment in the long-dormant franchise, so if you’re looking for movies what to watch anticipating the June 12 release, why not start with the original? 1992’s Candyman stood out among other horror releases of the decade (see: the 40 Best ’90s Horror Movies) for its distinctly African-American setting and plot, some raw honey-coated sexuality, and the perversely elegant direction and cinematography. Todd starred as Candyman, a man in 1890 who was brutally murdered by a lynch mob, and whose vengeful ghost could now be summoned at the Cabrini-Green projects in Chicago that had been built over his grave. Todd returned for two sequels, Farewell to the Flesh and Day of the Dead, and the 2020 film will follow the same continuity. For more of his horror work, don’t miss him as the mysterious funeral director in the Final Destination movies.

Peele has made groundbreaking strides in horror with Get Out and Us, and he and Todd appear in documentary HorrorNoire, which chronicles the history of black horror. For more films in this vein, where angry spirits return from the dead to menace the living, check out blaxploitation thriller J.D.’s Revenge, Snoop Dogg’s blaxploitation tribute Bones, and the comedic, race relations-tackling Tales from the Hood.

Meanwhile, Urban Legend is a ’90s slasher all about the spooky lore we create and share. I Know What You Did Last Summer, another horror anchor of that decade, also uses a sharp hook as its main instrument of dispensing murder. And if you just love the Chicago setting, the original Child’s Play is likewise set in a Windy City high-rise apartment building.

Adjusted Score: 5.145%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Tony Todd and Baywatch babe Donna D'Errico star in the third volume in the Candyman series, in which a woman... [More]
Directed By: Turi Meyer


Urban Legend (1998)

Adjusted Score: 23.607%
Critics Consensus: Elements of Scream reappear in a vastly inferior vehicle.
Synopsis: When a series of strange deaths occurs on campus, beautiful and assertive student Natalie suspects that they are murders based... [More]
Directed By: Jamie Blanks


Bones (2001)

Adjusted Score: 24.653%
Critics Consensus: Slow to start, the sleek looking Bones is more silly than scary.
Synopsis: Cinematographer turned director Ernest Dickerson returns to the horror genre with this African-American, urban twist on haunted house stories. Rap... [More]
Directed By: Ernest R. Dickerson

Adjusted Score: 29.835%
Critics Consensus: Doubling down on gore while largely abandoning the subtext and wit that made the original worthwhile, Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh disappoints.
Synopsis: In this blood-soaked horror movie, the horrific corpse of a former slaves rises again to walk the New Orleans streets.... [More]
Directed By: Bill Condon

Adjusted Score: 37.979%
Critics Consensus: Despite a panel of X-Files' alums at the helm and a promising premise, flighty performances and poor execution keep Final Destination from ever taking off.
Synopsis: Alex Browning, is embarking on a trip to Paris with his high school French class. In the plane's cabin, buckled-in... [More]
Directed By: James Wong

Adjusted Score: 45.748%
Critics Consensus: A by-the-numbers slasher that arrived a decade too late, the mostly tedious I Know What You Did Last Summer will likely only hook diehard fans of the genre.
Synopsis: Kevin Williamson scripted this thriller, an adaptation of Lois Duncan's novel about four teens involved in a hit-and-run incident. High... [More]
Directed By: Jim Gillespie

Adjusted Score: 47.464%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: When a trio of young criminals break into a funeral home searching for a stash of drugs, they instead find... [More]
Directed By: Rusty Cundieff


J.D.'s Revenge (1976)

Adjusted Score: 37.027%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Complete with a soundtrack by a then-barely-known Prince, this blaxploitation film stars Glynn Turman as a modern-day student possessed by... [More]
Directed By: Arthur Marks


Child's Play (1988)

Adjusted Score: 74.251%
Critics Consensus: Child's Play occasionally stumbles across its tonal tightrope of comedy and horror, but its genuinely creepy monster and some deft direction by Tom Holland makes this chiller stand out on the shelf.
Synopsis: Child's Play seems to have been concocted by a parent who went berserk after standing in line for hours on... [More]
Directed By: Tom Holland


Candyman (1992)

Adjusted Score: 78.637%
Critics Consensus: Though it ultimately sacrifices some mystery in the name of gory thrills, Candyman is a nuanced, effectively chilling tale that benefits from an interesting premise and some fine performances.
Synopsis: Researching urban folklore, a University of Chicago student snoops around the housing projects of Cabrini Green to find more about... [More]
Directed By: Bernard Rose


Little Woods (2019)

Adjusted Score: 99.512%
Critics Consensus: Led by standout work from Tessa Thompson, Little Woods tells a grimly absorbing tale that marks a commendable debut for writer-director Nia DaCosta.
Synopsis: Little Woods, North Dakota, a fracking boomtown well beyond its prime. Ollie is trying to survive the last few days... [More]
Directed By: Nia DaCosta


Get Out (2017)

Adjusted Score: 114.425%
Critics Consensus: Funny, scary, and thought-provoking, Get Out seamlessly weaves its trenchant social critiques into a brilliantly effective and entertaining horror/comedy thrill ride.
Synopsis: Now that Chris and his girlfriend, Rose, have reached the meet-the-parents milestone of dating, she invites him for a weekend... [More]
Directed By: Jordan Peele

Adjusted Score: 100.344%
Critics Consensus: Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror more than lives up to its title, offering a smart and entertaining overview of American film history through an overlooked lens.
Synopsis: Horror Noire features interviews with filmmakers and scholars, showcasing a who's who of black horror cinema, from those who survived... [More]
Starring: Ashlee Blackwell
Directed By: Xavier Burgin

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