Helen Lyle (Virginia Madsen) is a graduate student researching urban legends for her thesis. She soon learns about the myth of the Candyman and its hold over a community living in a housing project where a woman was mysteriously murdered. Helen begins to investigate why so many of the people living in the Cabrini-Green projects buy the legend, and soon comes face to face with the Candyman (Tony Todd) himself. And he wants to make Helen just as famous as he is.
The '90s were kind of barren when it comes to huge horror classics. Of course the decade only ended 15 years ago, so time will tell us what true classics really endure (let's all hope society forgets about Leprechaun though -- well, except as the unofficial backstory of Rachel Green on Friends). Without a doubt Candyman will be remembered.
This movie has the awesome tie-in promotion of inventing an urban legend that kids pass around like Bloody Mary. Both appear to you in the mirror after you say their name three times and both are terrifying. This film was the playground talk of the '90s. After all that playground hype it was easy to imagine it contained bloody hook slayings and mirror jump scares, sure, but one can't predict what an absolute mindfuck it is.
Candyman isn't so much interested in stalking Helen as he is in destroying her reputation and her life which is a super fun kind of horrifying a less cerebral slasher wouldn't be able to achieve. While this movie certainly lacked in creative or fun gore deaths, and it spent a little too much time on a pointless adultery subplot it certainly was not what I expected. This film portrays a monster who uses his hook, sure, but he also uses his magic ghostliness to straight up fuck up your life.