“Candela” is a clever and mysterious thriller set on a beautiful Caribbean island

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A drag queen with with and gold flowers in her hair.
Candela by Breaking Glass Pictures Photo by Michael Conroy

The setting of a movie often can make the story even more intriguing. Something is interesting especially when movies can add an eerie vibe to a picturesque place. When writers choose to create a story like that, it adds a compelling element. Candela is a new mystery thriller that tells a shocking story in the beautiful island country of the Dominican Republic. 

Sera is a privileged woman of elite status. After she creates a situation that escalated out of control with a queer man named Renato, a Lieutenant Perez begins to investigate the case. Meanwhile, drag queen Candela, who was the boyfriend of Renato, takes matters into his own hands and begins to try to figure out what happened on the night the horrific event occurred.

The film is a good effort. The movie had great mystery elements that kept you guessing throughout it’s whole runtime. At times, though, it did feel slow. the dialogue was not really adding too much to the plot. But, despite that flaw, the story does feature several redeeming qualities.

It shows how people with extra privileges are given unfair advantages that at times can really have a hurtful impact on minority groups. That theme serves as a warning that there is still much work to be done to ensure that all groups of people receive equality. It also shows that those who cause pain, especially those privileged, need to be held accountable if causing hurt.

The plot line with Detective Perez is also intriguing. His character goes through a big transformation while investigating the case of Sera and Renato. He learns some important life lessons. One of note is he realizes even though he loves his job solving problems, there are some things in the world he personally can never fix on his own. That lesson sends a strong message to the viewer and is another highlight of the movie.

While at times it may be a little slow with its dialogue, Candela is still a good mystery thriller. It features a cool setting alongside its dark subject matter. It is a story line that features a lot of depth. It also has many twists and turns and its characters are put into compelling situations that add good intrigue for you the viewer. It is definitely a good movie to check out especially for this spooky season.

Candela online

4/5 star