Review: Kissing Candice

Kissing Candice stars Ann Skelly in the title role. Candice is a bored 17 year old epileptic daughter of a small boarder town Garda detective (John Lynch). An over protective father investigating the case of a missing school boy, Caleb (Jason Cullen). Candice dreams of something better and wants to get out of town. She dreams of Conor (Ryan McParland)during an epileptic fit. As a gang of young men attempt to kidnap her, following threatening calls to her father, Conor a member of the gang comes to her rescue.

Kissing Candice received its world premier at the Toronto International Film Festival (08/09/2017). The film is Lynch-esq. As the story of the missing boy infatuates the cast of characters.

The film's director and writer Aoife McArdle tells a gripping story of growing up in small town Ireland that is wrapped up in the case of a missing school boy.

Candice seems to have a sixth sense about the boy, but the director avoids the pitfalls of such storytelling by allowing the character of Candice to think that her visions are only caused by her epilepsy.

The loss of the missing boy is seen through out the town and in the school. His mother is harassed by a local gang and flowers are laid at Cabel's old school locker.

Increasing her father becomes over protective of his eldest daughter as he investigates the local gang of youths. When he sees Candice hanging around with one of the gang members he he becomes infuriated.

The daughter/father relationship has changed. A beautiful child is now seeking out her own life. "You used to like fishing" he says as Candice stands on the boat in disgust at the caught fish, she quick throws one back into the sea.

She has romanticized Conor, she dreams of him sexually. He avoids her advances saying "your still in school". They form a relationship, he teaches her how to drive.

The gang increasing become erratic. This is shown not just by their actions but also by Candice's increase number of epileptic fits. As she sees Cable around her school and as she see more visions of Conor.

The cinematography coupled with a haunting soundtrack have allowed McArdel to show a dark underbelly of small town Ireland and how the disappearance of a young boy can take over the mind of a mother, a father and a town.


Ann Skelly - Candice

Ryan Lincoln - Jacob

Conall Keating - Dermot

Ryan McParland - Conor

Caitriona - Ennis Martha

John Lynch - Donal

Directed by Aoife McArdel

Cinematography by Steve Annis

Sound design by Jon Clarke