REVIEW: Creep (2015)

Blumhouse Productions poster for Creep

*I attribute it to 2015 due to the fact that it was only released at festivals in 2014 – and had a wide release in 2015.

I’m not a horror fan – let me start by stating that. For me to be interested in a horror film it has to either: be a horror classic, feature an actor / a director I like, or, my very favorite, be an acclaimed low-budget horror film. This film checks two of the three boxes for me.

Available on video-on-demand services, Creep is a found-footage horror film starring Mark Duplass (The League; Safety Not Guaranteed; Your Sister’s Sister) and Patrick Brice. Brice’s Aaron responds to a craigslist ad, and is to document/film Duplass’s Josef on one of his final days. But Josef quickly becomes more than Aaron bargained for.

For what it’s worth, I really like found-footage horror films. Normally they feel very real – though I’m cheated of that feeling, by being a fan of Duplass. But this is still a very solid found-footage film. Still, for this type of thing to work you have to understand how to manage the camera. I’m not saying that Brice’s camera-work isn’t good – it certainly adds to the unnerving feeling of this film – but here’s the thing: don’t overuse zoom.

With that pet peeve out of the way, let’s talk about the two starring actors. First up, our protagonist, Aaron, played by Patrick Brice. Somehow I didn’t connect with his character at all. He is supposed to represent the viewer, and he succeeds at doing that. But when he isn’t assisted by Duplass, Brice falls flat – and his lines suffer.

This just is Mark Duplass’s film. My favorite performance of his is from Safety Not Guaranteed, when he plays this introverted character – and I loved to see him expand his wheelhouse in this film. Duplass’s Josef is wide-eyed, brutally open, and, yes, creepy. Whenever Duplass is on film, the movie just works.

That said, the dialogue took me out of the film. I’m not sure how much of it was written and how much of it was improvised – but there are times when the dialogue just doesn’t work. This specifically happened in a scene when Josef revealed something to Aaron while the camera was off, and when a character calls the cops.

Still, Creep is a good found-footage horror film, and it is definitely worth your time – especially considering the fact that it only lasts about 80 minutes. Well worth your time.

Final Score: 7.5 out of 10Creep is a short but solid found-footage film, spearheaded by a great performance by Mark Duplass.

I’m Jeffrey Rex

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