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Jon Towlson

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781911325543

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781911325543.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 28 November 2021



(p.7) Synopsis
(p.3) Devil’s Advocates

Jon Towlson

Liverpool University Press

This chapter details the synopsis of Bernard Rose's Candyman (1992), which takes place in present-day Chicago. Helen Lyle (Virginia Madsen), a graduate student researching urban legends, investigates a series of murders in the Cabrini-Green housing projects supposedly committed by a hook-handed killer called the Candyman. Residents of the projects believe the Candyman to be the vengeful spirit of a slave's son who was lynched by a mob in 1890 after falling in love and fathering a child with a white landowner's daughter. After being attacked by a local drug dealer who has adopted the Candyman persona and being arrested under suspicion of abducting a baby, Helen is incarcerated in a mental hospital where her psychiatrist Dr. Burke (Stanley De Santis) attempts to convince Helen that the Candyman is a figment of her own psychotic imagination. Helen was able to escape the hospital and return to Cabrini-Green, where she attempts to rescue baby Anthony from the Candyman. Helen manages to save the baby while the Candyman is consumed by the flames of a giant bonfire in the Green. Severely burned, Helen dies soon afterwards. Later, her distraught husband Trevor (Xander Berkeley) invokes Helen in the bathroom mirror; Helen materialises in spirit form and exacts vengeance on her husband.

Keywords:   Bernard Rose, Candyman, Helen Lyle, urban legends, Cabrini-Green housing projects, vengeful spirit, horror film

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