The great underrated horror entry of the late slasher era gets a modern revamp with Nia DaCosta’s Candyman, a film that builds on its predecessor while not surpassing it. The 1992 film made exceptional use of Tony Todd as the titular vengeful spirit while also being far more intelligent than its genre typically requires. Some of Candyman’s themes are visible in DaCosta’s version, but the world’s a different place than it was 30 years ago and her film reflects that. Working from a script cowritten by Jordan Peele, Candyman has a lot on its mind. It has to effectively convey its ideas while also serving up the kills and mayhem, but DaCosta’s film is often is at war with itself over which interest it’s trying to serve.
The Green Knight
Dark Ages imposter syndrome takes center stage in David Lowery’s The Green Knight. This viewer has long thought Lowery was an imposter himself, scratching my head at the overheated praise for works like his flimsy adaptation of Pete’s Dragon and his ponderous A Ghost Story. With his adaptation of an ancient Arthurian story, Lowery finds a setting to match his mythic impulses and finally gets over the hump with something close to a masterpiece. The Green Knight wraps its mossy arms around the ambition and the hypocrisy of medieval feudalism as its lead character tries and fails to fulfill expectations that are on his back from birth. This epic film does that with a foot in the cold steel armor of the Christian world and another in the mysterious natural world of whatever came before. Both feet are planted firmly in a cinematic fantasia of rasping foxes and loping giants, making The Green Knight into a package that generates awe in the moment and contemplation long after.
Random projects from the MMC Universe.