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Home | Film Reviews | Film Review: Candy Corn (2019)

Film Review: Candy Corn (2019)

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It’s Halloween weekend and a group of bullies are planning their annual hazing on local outcast, Jacob Atkins. When they take things too far, he’s resurrected to seek revenge against those that wronged him.”


Do I admit that I sometimes eat the candy corn? I went on social media and asked my friends. I got varied answers.

Jacob Atkins is sitting on the sofa is eating his. He doesn’t look like he is admitting anything. The seventies are working well for this movie.

“Just the usual Halloween hazing.” This is not at all the usual Halloween hazing. The message about bullying is important.

Written and directed by Josh Hasty, “Candy Corn” is fun, perfect for Halloween and it delivers one hell of message about bullying and why it is NOT okay. Today is the first day of fall and all the fun Halloween films are making the rounds. Josh Hasty’s “Candy Corn” is so much fun. Grab the popcorn, M&M’s, candy corn and, whatever snack you want and watch this movie.

A quiet, sensible town. We meet a group of “kids” in a diner. It is probably the diner everybody goes to.  There always is a group of kids. They are looking for fun but they wind up committing murder… I mean hazing. Mike (Jimothy Beckholt), Bobby (Caleb Thomas), Carol (Madison Russ), Steve (Cy Creamer). “This is tradition” Mike blurts out.

What a tradition. We meet Gus (Sky Elobar) who may be the creepy dude of the entire town.

Oh, Jacob Atkins (Nate Chaney), sitting with a blank stare, eating candy corn out of a pumpkin bucket. He rides his bike barefoot. His torn and tattered look is sad. This sort of shows what some people do go through. (I know it’s a MOVIE but still. The writers apparently touched on a few important topics. Bullying is never okay.) You feel sad for Jacob. The fact that these kids do what they do is awful.

Jacob’s bike ride is a long and lonely one. The town is set up for Halloween. Decorations that look like they are from the seventies. Phones with CORDS! What are those contraptions? Okay, kids those were the phones people had to use. You couldn’t get far because of the cords. But, you could really slam the phone.

“This place is disgusting.” Carol said it! The “kids” are now at the carnival. This seems great. What is it about traveling carnivals?

As soon as someone says, “I have a bad feeling” YOU LEAVE! Run! We all know it is going to get worse.

We meet Dr Death AKA Lester (Pancho Moler who does an incredible job) He seems to be the leader of this motley crew. Dr. Death reminds Jacob he is one them. “Please welcome to Dr. Death’s Sideshow Spook House Spectacular.

Gus shows up at the carnival with the troublemaking kids. “The freak at the freak show.” The group attack Jacob. They brutally attack Jacob. This is more than hazing.

The way the film is shot is beautiful. The lit up carnival. The creepy atmosphere and the beauty of the trees changing.

We meet Bishop Gate (Tony Todd, Tony is incredible in so many of his films. He stands out portraying Bishop Gates.) Who is standing and helps carry poor lifeless Jacob inside the trailer at the carnival.

Now these troublemaking kids are trying to come up with excuses for what they did. Carol has had enough and leaves.

Dr. Death has a book. I do love a good conjuring of the dead. (Don’t try this stuff at home kids.)

Dr. Death also has a mask. It is creepy and looks like someone was dead forever and someone peeled a face off and just let it rest.  A mask and a pumpkin that is all a homicidal killer needs. Dr. Death is reading from the book over poor Jacob.

So far nothing is happening….. Dr. Death looks sad… WAIT! Could the intense music mean JACOB IS ALIVE?

Nope, they cut to what looks like the suburbs and Sheriff Sam Bramford (Courtney Gains) Every town needs a Sheriff. A Sheriff who will watch out for the town and radio to his dispatcher, Marcy (P.J. Soles)

He doesn’t see a single case of misconduct. The houses are decorated and all of the sudden the Sheriff spots a bloody man standing in front of a house near the bushes. (I am looking out my window just in case.)

The Grove Hill Sheriff.

Carol is in the Sheriff’s office with Marcy and the Sheriff. She is trying to explain what her “friends” did to Jacob. It is sad. The Sheriff is going to talk to Mike. This movie touches on bullying and a lot of topics that should be addressed. This film is a cautionary tale. The Sheriff doesn’t seem to treat people like they are “crazy.” Not yet, anyway.

“Guess, I’m going to the carnival.”

The Sheriff is going to the Carnival. Dr. Death explains his law enforcement views. He is right about one thing, don’t trust anyone. The Sheriff leaves and calls Marcy. He explains the situation about Jacob and he is “alive and well.”

Bishop Gate (Tony Todd, the legendary Tony Todd) gives his two cents to Dr. Death. A look of disappointment washes over his face.

He is going to see Jacob now. At random the aerial shot over all the trees. It looks to be perfect fall weather. The Sheriff on his drive. This film is beautifully shot. The Sheriff arrived at Jacob’s. He is nowhere to be seen.

The effects team did a good job. The mask Jacob wears is different. The death scenes are brutal and mostly he is killing them with his hands. There isn’t a weapon of choice for Jacob.

Jacob is now out and about committing a lot of crime. Murdering the people who hurt him and took his life. This sort of feels like “Pumkinhead” for today. The pace for the film is good.  We find Carol home in what seems to be a scene out of ‘Halloween” or even “Scream” with the swift answer of the phone and her staring out the window for a second to be scared by her obnoxious boyfriend.

Steve tries to butter Carol up. Despite what may be homages, the film is good. It is definitely a movie you could watch with friends and have fun. It is a horror film with a message. The old school decorations. The diner is decorated, the houses. It takes you back to when people did celebrate Halloween.

Everyone decorated.As usual, we find out the carnival is leaving town. Do they ever stay? Gus gets creepier throughout the film. He meets Jacob who is wearing the mask and the pumpkin bucket filled with candy corn sits nearby like a weapon of choice a different masked maniac might have. His seems more for aesthetic and in case he gets hungry.

Chet (Matt O’Neill) is busy doing his own thing. Gus is being brutally killed. Again, the effects team really went to work. Steve is working and Carol shows up to see him.

Jacob gets Mike and WOW! He is just ripping his teeth out. This is insanity. The brutality and kills are not hokey. This movie is fun for Halloween. The characters are fun and make sure to watch the film and check out what happens with Jacob Atkins.

Make sure to watch Josh Hasty’s Candy Corn

Candy Corn is now on bluray per Epic Pictures

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