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Film / The Candy Snatchers

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The Candy Snatchers is a 1973 exploitation film written and produced by Bryan Gindoff and directed by Guerdon Trueblood. Teenage heiress Candy Phillips (Susan Sennett) is kidnapped by three small-time criminals - Jessie (Tiffany Bolling), her brother Alan (Brad David), and their friend Eddy (Vince Martorano) - in order to extort diamonds from her wealthy father Avery (Ben Piazza). The only witness is a young boy named Sean Newton (Christopher Trueblood), but he is mute and unable to summon help.

The Candy Snatchers contains examples of:

  • Abusive Parents: Sean's mother openly despises him. Most of her screen time is spent yelling at him, hitting him, complaining about him, or threatening to destroy his toys. At one point she gives him a downer to get him out of her way for eight hours.
  • Adults Are Useless: Every adult who isn't evil is this. Sean's parents unknowingly foil all his efforts to rescue Candy, while Candy's mother is a drunk who never questions why she hasn't seen her daughter in days.
  • And Starring: Starring Tiffany Bolling, Ben Piazza, and Susan Sennet as Candy, co-starring Brad David, introducing Vincent Martorano as Eddy, featuring Bonnie Boland, Jerry Butts, Leon Charles, Dolores Dorn, Phyllis Major, Bill Woodard.
  • Binocular Shot: Done while the kidnappers are watching the ransom drop. They bring books on birdwatching to avoid suspicion.
  • Blindfolded Trip: Candy spends most of the movie blindfolded. When she tries to remove her blindfold, Alan says, "Listen, chickie, this little blindfold here is the only thing that's keeping you alive. So you figure out whether you want it on or off."
  • Bound and Gagged: Happens to Candy less than three minutes into the movie, and while her gag is sometimes removed, she's never untied.
  • Buried Alive: The kidnappers store Candy in a hole in the ground with a breathing pipe.
  • Cat Scare: When Sean accidentally knocks loose a plank from the kidnappers' attic, the kidnappers scramble for the attic to catch him. Then they see a cat and decide there was no intruder.
  • Dies Wide Open: Candy's mother, after Alan stabs her.
  • Downer Ending: Everything gets out of control due to Candy's stepfather - Avery - refusing to pay the ransom, leading to her mother to attempt to rescue her herself. However, she fails, is raped and later killed by Alan, leaving a Bound and Gagged Candy with no hope of being rescued from the hole she's trapped.
  • Finger in the Mail: The kidnappers want to cut off Candy's ear and send it to Avery. Eddy talks them out of it, so instead they force her to scream so they can record it, then purchase an ear from a worker at the local hospital.
  • Fingore: When Avery reaches for the gun in his drawer, Alan repeatedly kicks it shut on his hand.
  • From Camouflage to Criminal: Eddy used to be in the military.
  • Gold Digger: Avery admits that he married Candy's mother solely for her fortune.
  • Inheritance Murder: An indirect example. Avery is happy to let Candy get murdered because then he'll inherit her mother's fortune.
  • Janitor Impersonation Infiltration: Eddy disguises himself as a telephone repairman while he goes to deliver the ear to Avery.
  • Karmic Death: Mrs. Newton is implied to die by being shot from the same son that she abused.
  • Kick Them While They Are Down: At one point Jessie viciously kicks Candy while she's tied up and helpless on the floor.
  • The Mistress: Avery plans to run off to Rio with his mistress.
  • Modesty Bedsheet: Used when Avery has sex with his mistress.
  • Music Video Syndrome: "Money Is the Root of All Happiness" plays during the opening scene of Candy's kidnapping.
  • Must Not Die a Virgin: An extremely dark example. When Alan is told to kill Candy, he rapes her first so she won't die a virgin.
  • Not Now, Kiddo: Sean tries to lead his parents to Candy's hole, but they're too busy preparing for a fancy dinner.
  • Out with a Bang: Alan stabs Candy's mother to death after he has sex with her.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: The kidnappers wear fake glasses and noses during the opening scene.
  • Saw It in a Movie Once:
    Eddy: I gotta hand it to you, Jessie. I could never have thought of this.
    Jessie: Me neither. It was on television.
  • Say My Name: Sean's mother summons him by ringing a cowbell and screaming, "SEAN! SEAN NEW-TON!"
  • Sound-Only Death: A heavily implied case at the very end of the movie. Sean is being called back to the house by his mother, so he slides down the hill with the gun that he just got, leaving Candy behind. When he's out of sight and the camera pans down to where Candy is buried, the sound of a gunshot is heard, with the cowbell that Sean's mother was ringing stopping abruptly.
  • The Speechless: Not only does Sean not talk, he doesn't make any vocal noises at all. The closest he comes to speaking is mouthing "pew" when Candy asks him if he knows what killing is.
  • Stealing from the Till: Avery is very wealthy from constantly embezzling money from the jewelry store he manages.
  • Tap on the Head: Jessie knocks out a telephone worker by hitting him repeatedly with a plank.
  • Vehicular Kidnapping: The kidnappers drag Candy into a white and blue van with curtained windows.
  • Wicked Stepfather: Avery isn't Candy's biological father.