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‘Candy Corn’ Review: Dir. Josh Hasty [Frightfest Halloween]

Candy Corn review: A Halloween prank goes awry and a group of thugs find themselves fighting for their lives in new slasher Candy Corn, which opens this year’s Arrow Video Frightfest Halloween event. 

Signature Entertainment

Set around Halloween, a group of young men’s traditional pranking and hazing of a local strange boy gets out of hand. The boy’s new boss, freak show ringmaster Dr. Death, uses a spell to revive him and the newly animated corpse goes on a deadly rampage. The premise of Candy Corn is nothing new, and sadly the execution of the premise is also lacking originality.

On paper Candy Corn sounds like a standard slasher film, one of the best strands of the horror genre, but in reality the film is tediously dull. Slasher movies typically move fast, having a new victim dispatched on a fairly frequent basis to keep the viewer engaged. Here the pace is super slow, and as a result, sometimes rather boring. The deaths are few and far between, and thanks to a critical lack of character development, the audience doesn’t care for them at all. Granted, most characters in slasher films don’t get a huge amount of character work beyond their cliched stereotype – jock, bitch, brain etc., but even our core characters here don’t have that. Events plod along all the way to the very end, by which most audience members will have switched off. It’s a massive shame as it’s been a few years since we had a great slasher meaning there is a gap for a film such as Candy Corn, but the wasted potential means it’ll just get added to the generic fodder pile.

You may notice Tony Todd’s name on the artwork, and he did serve as executive producer on the project, but he is criminally underused. He appears in a handful of scenes, having exchanges with Dr. Death, pleading with him to undo what he has done, but that’s all we see. If you have someone as well-known to genre audiences as Tony Todd in your cast, you want to either give him a meaty part, or at least an interesting and memorable cameo. Unfortunately, that the opportunity is squandered here.

An overlong pacing makes it a test of audience’s endurance to make it to the end; Candy Corn is a series of missed opportunities. A punchier pace, few more deaths, and some characters that we actually get to know (even if just as stereotypes) before their demise would all help Candy Corn to capture and maintain its target audience.

Signature Entertainment presents Candy Corn on Digital HD 4th November.

Kat Hughes is a UK born film critic and interviewer who has a passion for horror films. An editor for THN, Kat is also a Rotten Tomatoes Approved Critic. She has bylines with Ghouls Magazine, Arrow Video, Film Stories, Certified Forgotten and FILMHOUNDS and has had essays published in home entertainment releases by Vinegar Syndrome and Second Sight. When not writing about horror, Kat hosts micro podcast Movies with Mummy along with her five-year-old daughter.


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