Even though the Silent
Hill movie won't be hitting theatres for some time now, fans of
creepy, surrealist and occasionally gruesome horror can snag the
next best thing in the UK's offering, "Creep."
First off, you've got
to love that title. It's truth in advertising.
Personified. Yes, yes,
it's called "Creep" largely because of the villain's
name, but truth be told this is some fantastically creepy stuff.
I mean REALLY creepy.
And if you don't believe me, just check out the menu.
Those different security camera angles, each revealing a new and
progressively scarier detail, are an excellent stroke.
But even these hair-raising
menu options (no, it's not hyperbole. Hit the
special features button and see for yourself!) are no match for
eight minutes. The first eight minutes are going to be home to a
lot of edgy
moments, and it has the effect of putting you on edge.
Now, the plot doesn't
sound like it should be very creepy. Basically, a
model agency booker named Kate is going to try and get across town
George Clooney. I think we can all be pretty confident that she's
Anyway, she can't get
a cab to meet George, so she turns to the subway to
get her across town, and after downing one of those little bottles
I'm guessing is vodka (though from the way the girl was drinking
at the party
she'd just left it could be paint thinner for all I know) she "dozes
(read: passes out for those not inclined to be charitable) And by
she wakes up, the station is empty, and everyone around her is gone.
Okay, Silent Hill moment,
And then the next train
comes in. And then...all hell breaks loose.
Seriously. We've gone from creepy to bloodstained in the space of
oh, five minutes or so. And that's the thing that got me about "Creep."
This isn't one of those movies that takes a while to get fired up.
isn't one of those movies that pulls a Monev the Gale with a wild
minutes and then can't keep up with the rest of the film. This starts
runs big through the middle, and then finally ends on a pretty big
does not lag. There are no slack moments. Sure, there's some quiet
plot development--everybody worth talking about's got that--but
quiet time is well used to develop tension.
And even better, some
of the scariest parts of "Creep" take place in a
brightly lit environment. Now how's that for originality? Everybody
the dawn of horror's been counting on the moving darkness to yield
scares--"Creep" stages most of its shock value in a white
station with overhanging flourescent light. Now THAT is bright!
Perhaps the biggest reason
for applause for "Creep," the gore factor--which
you'd rightly expect to be ramped through the roof--is actually
Splatter is a minimum here, and used rather sparingly, especially
compared to some bucket-based filmmaking we can all name.
Ladies, a special note--always
wear pumps. The biggest heel you can get.
Aside from the fact that most of us guys truly enjoy the sight,
demonstrates at the fifty seven minute six second mark, if you're
trapped in a sewer system by a homicidal flesh eating ghoul, those
stilettos to an eye just might save your life.
Think about it.
The ending features a
plot element seemingly tacked on at the last second to
give our main baddie a little note of humanity (which I actually
forced and a bit confusing, it's kind of like "Dr. Giggles",
but only a bit),
some fantastic cat-and-mouse work, and even a surprise comic twist
Yeah, that's the twist!
The ending's funny!
The special features
include audio and video options, several making-of
featurettes including a Q&A session at Fright Fest 2004, director's
commentary, an alternate ending, an alternate BEGINNING, and trailers
"Saw II" and "Bloodline."
All in all, "Creep"
is an excellent example of some creepy, surrealist horror
with just enough gore to keep the plot spicy. A freaky opening,
done middle and an ending with a laugh is just the combination "Creep"
to be put at the top of a rental list.
GRADE: 4 stars ****
Directed by Christopher Smith
Written by Christopher Smith
Starring Franka Potente, Vas Blackwood, Jeremy Sheffield, Sean Harris
Produced by Julie Baines, Jason Newmark
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