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It's the Booze Talkin'; The return of Helen to Candyman could be sweet!

It's the Booze Talkin, Cassie Kramer, Tony Todd, Virginia Madsen, Jordan Peele, horror, sequel, AITH, Arrow in the Head, JoBlo.com

There are certain films that tend to hold up especially well after a few years. You know, the type of movie that terrified you as a child, yet still manages to give you the heebie jeebies while watching at home all by yourself, even after you’ve said goodbye to all your childhood fears? One such flick was inspired by the spooky Clive Barker short story “The Forbidden.” And yes, I’m talking about the gorgeous and horrific CANDYMAN (GET THE BLU RAY HERE). The 1992 original feature is beautifully directed by Bernard Rose, and features two dynamic talents in the leading roles. In fact, watching this film again, it’s striking how great both Virginia Madsen and Tony Todd were together. The fascinating examination of race, class structure and a frightening urban legend help give this a surprisingly fresh feel, especially for a film that is nearly thirty years old. However, like every other popular flick from the past, we’re about to see yet another remake of sorts. I’m still intrigued.

We’ve discussed this very film in this column a couple of times before - yes, I apparently have a bit of faith. However, after another casting announcement, we’ve decided it may be worth bringing up once again. First we had the big news that Jordan Peele is producing and wrote the script along with Win Rosenfeld. Then there was the inclusion of AQUAMAN baddie Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, as well as the casting of Tony Todd. And now there’s more news coming from the Nia DaCosta directed “spiritual sequel,” and that is the return of Helen Lyle. For those of you who’ve forgotten, Lyle was the role that Madsen made famous. This time, Cassie Kramer will be taking it on. This little twist brings a whole bunch of questions as to what we have in store for this updated vision. Spoiler alert for those of you who have no idea what befell Helen in the first film… she had a pretty freaking tragic end.

It's the Booze Talkin, Cassie Kramer, Candyman, Tony Todd, Virginia Madsen, Clive Barker, Jordan Peele, horror, sequel, AITH, Arrow in the Head, JoBlo.com

As I’ve said in the past, I’m very much looking forward to the return of the this iconic villain. Even though he’s not directing, I feel that Jordan Peele will clearly have a huge impact on this particular story. Certainly I’d be curious what it would be like if he was actually directing, but something tells me he may be onto something by giving this story to a fresh filmmaking vision. It’s likely that the continuation will not really follow any of the sequels that came after, but I wouldn’t be terribly shocked if they make a reference to them. As well, the inclusion of Tony Todd as a character named Stix is sure to give fans of the original a bit of a thrill. But again… how do you bring Helen Lyle back? What the hell are they thinking with this bit of casting news? And more importantly, why am I so excited and confused by the whole thing?

After reading the news, I decided to watch the first film again to get a feel for how her character could come back. They certainly do have her return in the final scene as yet another urban legend - perhaps one that goes after cheating spouses. But I highly doubt that the final scare in Rose’s feature will be the direction the new film goes. So how do you bring Helen back? Is she just like Candyman himself and will they stick with the original ending? Will they present her only in flashbacks in some form? Or will the give us an alternate fate for the bright but troubled grad student? After all, that last choice worked well enough to make the recent HALLOWEEN a hit. And the last question I have… what time period will this take place? Clearly this cannot be a modern film if she is returning at Kramer’s young age. A current story would have made a ton of awesome sense if they brought back the incredible Madsen to reprise the role.

It's the Booze Talkin, Cassie Kramer, Candyman, Jordan Peele, Clive Barker, Virginia Madsen, Tony Todd, JoBlo.com, horror, AITH, Arrow in the Head

CANDYMAN for me is perhaps one of my favorite genre films. And the story behind it still feels relevant. Even though I get a bit tired of all the remakes and the reboots that are a fixture in modern cinema, there is something that truly excites me when it comes to the promise of what this film could deliver. Since they are bringing Tony Todd back, I’d really like to see Madsen involved in some way. Even though the casting of Kramer for this role brings way more questions than it answers, it only makes me more interested in what they are trying to accomplish here. Do I have doubts? Damn straight, but there is something about this upcoming film that feels especially promising. As well, we haven’t had an adaptation of Barker’s for so long that I’m hoping for a bit of his artfully done bloody goodness back on the big screen. And yes, if Helen Lyle is a part of it, my curiosity is certainly piqued.

Maybe it’s the booze talkin’; but Helen Lyle’s return to Candyman could be a sweet treat. Look, I’m a bit shocked that this particular film has me so excited, but there is something about it that has made it one of my most anticipated films of the year. Much of this may come from the choices that Peele has made as a filmmaker himself. As stated before, he’s not directing, but it certainly feels like a story that holds a very special place in his heart. And then there is that whole “spiritual sequel” aspect. Some of my favorite modern remakes have followed a similar pattern, including MY BLOODY VALENTINE and THE TOWN THAT DREADED SUNDOWN. The story of Cabrini Green being gentrified also brings a cool take to the first story presented. So why not get back to the mirror and say his name five times? What do you think? How do you predict they are going to handle the return of Helen Lyle in the upcoming flick? Let us know in the comment section below. I for one am clearly looking forward to more sweets to the sweet.

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