If you’re willing to buy that the beautiful Sage Hall somewhere likely in her early thirties is the mother of a man also in his early thirties, then “Candy” might just tickle your funny bone as something of a creepy and unusual horror short film. The appeal of “Candy” is Hall’s directorial style in which she enlists her experience as a video artist to paint a vivid and often uneasy little portrait of a family celebrating Halloween. Hall plays Candy, the curvaceous but coddling mother to her son who experiences jealousy and resentment when he brings home his girlfriend to get in on the festivities.
She takes issue with the girl’s donation of pre-wrapped store bought brownies, she refuses to believe her son would indulge in a date, questions the girl’s virginity, and even goes so far as humiliating him with baby pictures to keep her desires at bay. Hall’s visual style is superb often shifting from tones of black and white to color, introducing dabs of reds and blues every so often and using the editing as a means of expressing emotions and the psychological ticks the possessive mother Candy has for her son. The entirety of the film involves Candy’s war with her son for his love as they do battle back and forth obsessing over baked goods and the holiday, with his girlfriend looking on and trying to keep him within her clutches from the dominant and intrusive Candy.
What’s revealed in the final scene is pretty much explanatory of the age difference among Candy and her son, and is a wicked little nod for horror fans who appreciate the holiday of Halloween. Hall is a director clearly capable of using the camera as a means of expressing key emotions for her characters and “Candy” is ultimately a little treat for the horror fans that I watched twice. Hall has a lot of potential to be a visually brilliant independent director implementing editing and colors quite well and relying on her experience as a video artist to convey her characters actions and justify her vision. “Candy” is a very solid short horror film, and one worth checking out.