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Bonus Reviews: Skinamarink, Munster Go Home, and all the Jeepers Creepers films
Horror Bulletin Bonus for Week 204
Note that starting last week, we’re going to try sending out a single, combined email with all the reviews, both regular and bonus, in a single mail.
This week in our “regular” reviews, we looked at the Jeepers Creepers series: 1, 2, 3, and Jeepers Creepers Reborn from this year. We liked them all, but each successive one was less than the previous film.
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For our bonus films this week, we had some fun with “Munster Go Home!” from 1966 and the new, “experimental” film “Skinamarink” from this year.
New Book: The Horror Films of Roger Corman
We do the usual “Horror Guys Treatment” for all the horror films directed by Roger Corman from 1954 up to 1990. Included are 29 full-length films that truly count as horror. In addition, we’ll look at seven other noteworthy Corman movies that aren’t horror, including his first producing credit, his first directing credit, his favorite non-horror project, and a few others. If you love Roger Corman’s macabre masterpieces, we’ll cover all of them here.
Fifteenth Issue of Horror Bulletin now available
The newest issue of Horror Bulletin Monthly, our monthly compilation of all our reviews, is out now. This includes all the bonus content and is available as both a print book and an ebook. If you don’t have time to read the website or email, here’s one more option for you!
• Buy from Amazon: Amazon.com
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Check out all our books!
The Horror Guys Guide to:
• Tales to Make You Shiver, Volumes 1 and 2
Here. We. Go!
• Directed by Kyle Edward Ball
• Written by Kyle Edward Ball
• Stars Jaime Hill, Lucas Paul, Ross Paul
• Run Time: 1 Hour, 40 Minutes
Spoiler-Free Judgment Zone
The Horror Guys are unanimous in their dislike of this one. An extreme dislike. We didn’t find it scary. We were bored. There are some online raves about this and people who say they were terrified watching it. We can’t agree.
We begin in 1995 as credits roll over grainy footage that looks like something from the 70’s Super-8 era. Kevin and Kaylee are partially shown as the camera is really pointed at the hallway carpeting. We cut to the same hallway at night, as we hear a TV talking in the background as the camera shows us the house, mostly in the dark.
Eventually, we see really subtle things like towels being pushed off shelves, doors opening ever-so-slightly, and stuff like that. One of the children asks “Are you hiding?”
Dad calls Mom on the phone and says Kevin is fine, but he fell down the stairs onto his head. Kaylee says he was sleepwalking. They didn’t even need to do stitches. We then return to grainy, silent shots of places in the house.
The two kids wake up in the middle of the night, and we see a window blink into existence and then go away. “Where did it go?” One asks. Their father is suddenly gone too, along with the doors. They go downstairs and watch cartoons.
Where has the toilet gone? Why is there a doll on the ceiling? Oh! A loud jump scare! More cartoons and whispering. Occasionally, the kids hear Dad whispering, “Come upstairs, look under the bed,” and so forth. At one point, one of the kids whispers, “I can’t see anything,” which got a laugh out of us, because neither could we.
Some brief whispering with Mom ends in a completely unnecessary squealing noise to ensure we’re still awake. Then there are more shots of toys on the floor before another loud jump scare of Kaylee with no eyes or ears. It’s literally the first face we’ve seen in the film, and this is a full hour into the thing.
Later, we hear a voice. “Put a knife in your eye.” Kevin wanders the house alone, at one point calling 911, but that doesn’t go anywhere.
The scariest part of this film is watching all the bare feet walk around the house covered in scattered Lego. Nightmare fuel!
This film is getting tons of hype online, possibly due to the crowdfunding nature of the production. There are lots and lots and lots of odd shots of walls, floors, carpet, electrical outlets, and trim, but very little of actual people. Most of it is over-dark, and all of it is grainy and would have been considered low-budget in the 70s.
I think this film is probably terrifying if you’re either four years old or high as a kite while watching it. For anyone else, not so much. The only so-called scary parts are just insanely loud noises that come out of nowhere— they aren’t even proper jump scares.
When it was done, Kevin said, “That was an abomination.” No, calling it that would be an insult to abominations.
I guess the gracious, generous thing is to call this film “experimental,” but instead, I’ll go with the “most boring film I’ve seen all year, and certainly in the top five worst films of my entire life.”
Munster, Go Home (1966)
• Directed by Earl Bellamy
• Written by Joe Connelly, Bob Mosher, George Tibbles
• Stars Fred Gwynne, Yvonne De Carlo, Al Lewis, Butch Patrick
• Run Time: 1 Hour, 36 Minutes
Spoiler-Free Judgment Zone
This is like a longer, amped-up episode of the TV show. And it’s in color! The first time that the Munsters were not black and white. It’s silly and goofy, with a lot of the humor still holding up after all this time. Marilyn is played by a new actress, but the other four family members had been doing it for a while by this point. They all seemed to be having fun, making it even more fun to see.
We begin on Mockingbird lane, where a hearse drops off a body-- no, wait, that's just Herman getting a ride home from work. He goes inside to find everyone looking depressed. Herman's Uncle Cavanaugh from England has died, and it’s time to read the will. The uncle has given Herman... everything. He's now a rich lord with a castle!
The whole family is packed up, including Grandpa and his little bag of goodies and Eddie with his coffin-shaped surfboard. Marilyn, poor thing, is still revolting. They board the ocean liner, and Herman is seasick the whole way there. Marilyn meets up with Roger Moresby, and he likes her.
Meanwhile, at Munster Hall in England, Freddie Munster is throwing a temper tantrum. He's angry because he didn't get to be Lord Munster. He thinks someone should be hired to "do him in." His sister Grace is there as well, as odd as he is. Their mother Lady Effigie Munster says that she has a way to get rid of Herman. The simple answer is fear. They'll scare them away. The butler, Cruikshank, looks like John Carradine in monster makeup. Freddie admits he's already sent a package to Herman aboard the ship.
Back on the ship, Herman's fruit basket is ticking. Grandpa has a pill for Herman’s seasickness, and he takes one to demonstrate that it's safe. Grandpa suddenly gets all hairy. Whoops- that was a wolf pill. He full-on turns into a wolf and leads the stewards on a chase through the ship until he ends up in the kennel. Lily throws the ticking apple out the window and it explodes, no harm done. Herman tries to spring Grandpa from the kennel.
They finally disembark in "Shroudshire." Wolf grandpa runs off, gets separated, and reverts to his vampire form again. A couple of men at the pub, Alfie and Joey, take boxes in and out of Munster Hall on a regular basis, and the locals think it's weird. Suddenly, Dracula walks in asking for directions to Munster Hall. Awkward!
Freddie, Grace, Effigie, and Cruikshank see the Munster-Coach approaching and get ready to scare the newcomers to death. The Munsters come in and unpack; Marilyn is still sad over not saying goodbye to Roger. Eddie crawls into a drawer to sleep.
Herman and Lily go to bed, but they soon hear screams and wolves howling. There's a skeleton in the closet. "How nice of your family to make us feel so at home!" There are skeletons and mummies and ghosts and dead bodies, and Lily and Herman laugh in joy at the whole thing.
The next morning, Herman introduces his family to his extended family. Back at the pub, Joey and Alfie tell Squire Moresby about the boxes going to Munster Hall. Afterward, Squire Moresby has a bicycle collision with Marilyn. The old man takes her home to meet his son-- Roger. Smooches!
Grandpa and Cruikshank talk about cars. Cruikshank says that there's always been a rivalry between the Munsters and the Squire. This year, Roger will be in the big race that his family always wins. When the Squire finds out Marilyn is a Munster, he gets all snooty. Kids throw tomatoes at Eddie. Apparently, the Munsters are very unpopular in this town. Lily wants Herman to go to the police, but he and Grandpa decide to work this out on their own.
The bumbling pair sneak out that night to see if there's a basement in the castle. They almost immediately find a secret passage. Outside, Joey and Alfie arrive for more boxes. They run into Grandpa and Herman, and everyone scares each other. Grandpa opens one of the boxes and it's full of counterfeit money. They soon find the printing setup in the next room. They've learned the secret of Munster Hall.
In the morning the British Munsters are annoyed that the Americans learned about the counterfeiting. Effigie plays innocent and tells Herman she'll tell the police right away. Freddie still wants to kill Herman; Effigie proclaims that Herman will die in the upcoming road race. Apparently the Griffin is someone pulling the strings who will take care of Herman. They cackle evilly.
Herman's looking forward to the race. Lily says he could get killed, but Herman knows he can handle it. Herman immediately wrecks the car, so Grandpa decides to build a new one-- called "Dragula."
The men at the pub have the odds on Roger to win-- again. Herman is definitely the underdog. Freddie bets against his own family, putting fifty pounds on Roger. Freddie ties up Grandpa and Lily while the race proceeds. Freddie tells them someone calling themselves the Griffin is really behind the counterfeiting and the race plan to kill Herman.
It’s time for the race, and someone dressed identically whacks the helmeted Roger over the head and takes his place. It soon becomes a contest between Herman and "the Griffin." Some goons shoot out Herman's tire, but he quickly fixes it with a handkerchief and duct tape-- he blows the tire up himself.
Grandpa and Lily escape from the dungeon and have a misadventure with a motorcycle and sidecar and then-- horses! Grandpa loses his horse and ends up taking a wolf pill to run faster-- then gets chased in a fox hunt. Other shenanigans ensue until Roger finally wakes up and comes out from wherever they stashed him. Marilyn sees him and realizes he isn't so bad after all.
Herman wins the race! As he bows to the audience, the Griffin runs right into him. Herman being Herman, he just stands there as the Griffin and the car go flying. The police pull off the helmet from the Griffin, which turns out to be Millie from the pub. Freddie and Grace take off running, but Herman stops them easily. Effigie and Cruikshank try to flee to the airport, but Lily and Eddie have taken the driver's place.
After the race, Herman writes a letter that explains the whole sordid plot. They are heading home to America; Herman is giving the castle to the townspeople. Marilyn and Roger say goodbye, but Roger gets a look at the rest of the family. This time he doesn't let on.
Robert Pine's faux-British accent comes and goes pretty regularly; he's not very good at being British. John Carradine, as the butler, was suitably creepy but didn't really get much screen time here.
It's so... colorful as if color was a new thing! Actually, this was the Munster's first appearance in color. It's a much longer story than anyone had seen the family in before; between that and color, this was a big hit at the time. Otherwise, it's pretty low-budget for a movie, but still way better than any single episode of the show.
If you liked the original Munsters, this is a nice addition to the TV show. It's still funny and holds up pretty well even today. The last half-hour is mostly racing shenanigans, but they pulled out all the stops to keep it entertaining.
Jeepers Creepers (2001)
• Directed by Victor Salva
• Written by Victor Salva
• Stars Gina Philips, Justin Long, Jonathan Breck
• Run Time: 1 Hour, 30 Minutes
Spoiler-Free Judgment Zone
This was still really good after a third viewing. It’s got an interesting monster, creepy situations, suspense, and scares. The effects and acting are all very well done—all in all, a big thumbs up.
Trish and her brother Darry are taking a road trip in their classic car. They’re taking the long way through the country, but Trish won’t explain why. As they banter back and forth, a big creepy truck comes up behind them. As the maniac passes, they try to figure out his vanity license plate, “BEATNGU.” Beating You? Trish remembers some people that went missing not too far from here.
They pass the creepy truck and see a guy taking what sorta kinda looks like he takes a body wrapped and tied in a sheet and dumps it in a pipe. The guy sees them seeing him and jumps in the truck to pursue them. He rams them from behind a few times. Darry’s no match for him and soon runs off the road.
The pair talk about that body in the pipe. He wants to go back, but she wants to find a police station. They decide to go back.
The building is an old, boarded-up church covered in crows. They find the big pipe sticking up out of the ground, and Darry goes over to check it out. It smells terrible, but they can’t see anything. Darry hears someone moaning down there. Trish yells, “You know the part in scary movies when someone does something stupid? This is it!” He falls in.
Justin recovers from his fall and finds a body wrapped in a sheet. It’s a still-living boy who has been sewn up after a clumsy surgery. The boy says, “Hide” before dying. Darry looks around and finds numerous other bodies and surgical implements. He looks up and finds the whole ceiling is covered with corpses, two of whom are the people Trish was talking about earlier. He makes it out to the car and the two go looking for help.
They stop at a diner for gas and run into the creepy truck. They get a phone call from a woman who describes them and asks if they have seen the cats yet. She knows all about the Creeper; she’s not sure if it’s a demon or devil or what it is, but she knows it can’t stop. She warns him about the song “Jeepers Creepers.”
The police arrive, and they don’t believe most of the story. Trish also doesn’t quite believe most of it. The policeman says the missing dead people would have decomposed by now, but Darry says they’re preserved somehow. Someone spots a strange man sniffing the laundry from their car.
The police are halfway convinced now and follow the teens to the old church, but the radio reports that the church is on fire. It doesn’t matter anyway since the cops don’t survive the drive. They watch the Creeper pick up the cop’s head and take a bite out of it. Trish and Darry drive away as the Creeper loads the bodies into his truck.
The duo stops at an old house to call for more police. They walk past a weird scarecrow and talk to a cat lady who doesn’t have a phone. She doesn’t like the police because they try to tell her how many cats she can have. Suddenly, the power goes off, and all the cats start growling. Wait— that’s not a scarecrow on that pole. The old woman comes out with a shotgun. She shoots him, but he can fly or leap or something. The Creeper gets into the house and starts messing with her cats, so she charges inside to die.
Trish and Darry finally get a look at the Creeper, and he’s a literal monster, not just a murderer. They run him over with their car, multiple times. They watch the now-legless creature sprout wings and try to fly away. They run over him again.
They make it to the next police station, and Jezelle storms in. She’s the woman who phoned them earlier— she’s a psychic. She knows everything that’s been going on from her dreams. She tells them, “Every 23rd Spring, for 23 days, it gets to eat.” It only eats certain things from certain people. It only eats the body parts that it needs; lungs to breathe, eyes to see. Plus extra to be stronger. She thinks it’s eaten so many hearts that it can’t ever be killed.
We see the Creeper outside the police station limping along on one leg with only one arm. Suddenly, the power goes out. It eats one of the prisoners’ arms and legs. He is whole again!
Jezelle, Darry, and Trish listen as the cops downstairs battle and lose. The Creeper ignores Jezelle, but grabs both Trish and Darry. He sniffs and licks them both very carefully and then chooses Darry. Trish tries to talk the creature into trading for her, but no, the thing sprouts wings, flies out the window with Darry, and vanishes into the night.
The next morning Jezelle talks to Trish. Elsewhere, we see the Creeper in his new lair as “Jeepers Creepers” plays on an old phonograph. There’s lots of screaming as the Creeper makes use of Darry’s eyes.
Yes, there’s controversy about the problems with the director, but this is really good. The monster is interesting, the situation is completely believable, the acting is good, and we don’t get much in the way of explanation for any of it. Later films added a lot of lore to the Creeper, but he’s just a mystery here.
This was Justin Long’s first horror film, and he’d only had small roles in a couple of other films before this. The Creeper makeup and prosthetics look really well done, halfway between a man, lizard, and gargoyle.
Jeepers Creepers 2 (2003)
• Directed by Victor Salva
• Written by Victor Salva
• Stars Ray Wise, Jonathan Breck, Garikayi Mutambirwa, Eric nenninger
• Run Time: 1 Hour, 44 Minutes
Spoiler-Free Judgment Zone
This is a great sequel to the first movie, taking place only a matter of days after the first film. You wouldn’t have to see the first one to appreciate this one, but we think you’d get more out of it seeing them in order. It’s really well done, with a good story and excellent special effects.
We are reminded, “Every 23 years, for 23 days, it gets to eat.” This is Day 22.
On the family farm, Jack Taggart Senior yells at Billy to get the scarecrow up straight, as the crows are thick this year. The old man blames Jack Junior for messing with the post-hole digger. The dog barks at the cornfield— there’s something out there. Billy doesn’t see the weird scarecrow on the end looking at him, at least not right away. Billy runs, but the Creeper is fast, and he can fly. The Jacks run through the cornfield to help, but the Creeper flies away with his prize.
We cut to a school bus full of people way too old to be high schoolers, but I guess we’ll suspend disbelief just this one time. It’s Day 23. Something breaks on the bus, and they’re stranded. There’s a big bone weapon with teeth stuck in the tire. They’re going to have to call a mechanic to change it. We hear the radio news about police excavating the corpses under the church in the first film. That was only a few days ago. Some of the bodies were over two hundred years old.
Jack Junior finds a knife carved out of bone. It literally throws itself. The father and son get an idea and start getting ready for a fight.
Back on the road, the bus driver decides to “limp” the bus back to town. Some of the team debate Izzy’s sexuality (“Izzy or Izzn’t he?”). It gets dark, and there is teenage sports team drama from Scotty. Minxie, one of the girls on the bus, dreams about Darry from the first film— he’s pointing at something in the cornfield. She watches out the window as the Creeper throws another bone thing and flattens another tire. They aren’t going anywhere this time.
One of the coaches suddenly gets taken— straight up. Several kids see it happen when the bus driver goes next. They all get back on the bus for safety. When the third and final adult gets pulled out of the bus, they all see that.
Back at the farm, Jack listens to various police calls on the radio.
Scotty and Izzy find javelins and a flare gun on the bus. Scott wants to make for a nearby farmhouse to find a phone. There’s some homophobic and racist stuff, as Scotty argues with pretty much everyone. The Creeper returns, and he smells something he likes on the bus. It smiles at them.
Minxie has another vision, this time seeing the Taggart farm and the scarecrow. Darry is there as well, and he knows about 23 years and 23 days because he’s part of it now. When she wakes up, she understands why the Creeper is there; it’s picking out dinner and spare parts.
The Creeper returns and gets a javelin through his skull, which he pulls out slowly and very theatrically. With half his head gone, the Creeper flies away. No— he’s just building speed before he falls onto the bus and nearly destroys it. The students want out, but they can’t get the doors open. As soon as the Creeper wakes, one of the students goes headless; the Creeper needed a new head.
Rhonda sticks her head out and watches the Creeper tear his own head off and throw it away. He then grows a new one from the head he stole. Minxie thinks it only has one day left, so if they can hold out until morning, they’ll be all right. Never mind all that; they all go outside and run for it, which goes very badly for Scotty.
Jack and Jacky find Minxie running down the road. She says, “you can’t kill it,” but Big Jack disagrees. The Creeper returns to the school bus to grab Bucky, but Jack arrives before he can get any more kids.
Jack’s got a huge harpoon gun mounted on the back of his truck made from the post-puncher. He fires, and it hits the Creeper, who tries to fly away but can’t. The Creeper flies and drags the heavy pickup truck behind him. Then Jack starts to reel in the Creeper like a big fish on the line. The Creeper sends the harpoon back to Jackie Jr. Jack reloads for another shot. He hits again, this time, right through the school bus. He’s not gonna pull that away.
Yeah, he is. The cable slices right through the bus and destroys the pickup as well.
Izzy finds Rhonda and Deaundre, and they find another of the Creeper’s victims. The exterminator is gone, but his van with a big bug on top is still there. The Creeper shows up, and the truck doesn’t last long; neither do his wings, arm, or leg. The Creeper’s pretty well beat up, but he still goes after the injured Deaundre. Jack arrives just in time to save Deaundre, again harpooning the monster, this time, right through the forehead. Then Jack stabs it about a thousand times, but it still won’t die.
Then the sun comes up, and it wraps itself in a cocoon. “Looks dead to me,” Jack finally admits.
Years pass. A bunch of kids drive up to Taggart’s farm; they want to see “it.” The now-much-older Jack Junior runs the farm now, and he charges them each $5 to see the “Bat out of Hell.” They go into the barn and see The Creeper still in his cocoon, mounted up on the wall of the barn. Now an old man, Jack Senior sits there waiting with another harpoon gun. It’s been 23 years now, and he knows what’s coming in “about three more days, give or take a day or two…”
Not all sequels are good, but this one is a worthy sequel to the original. Who knew being trapped on a school bus could be so entertaining? The bus is claustrophobic, and the students ramp up the suspense just right without being too annoying.
The creature makeup is even better here than in the original, and they make a lot of use of the creature's wings and flying. The special effects of the creature flying are actually really well done. The year this takes place is surprisingly vague, so the Creeper could make another appearance at any time!
Short Film: Final Gasp (2022)
• Directed by David E. Teixeira
• Written by David E. Teixeira
• Stars Catarina Carvalho, Sergio Moco
• Run Time: 11:30
• IMDB Link: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt23139972/
Lindsay shares an apartment with two roommates. They're both gone, yet she wonders if someone is watching her. She tries to practice playing the piano, but the neighbor won’t stop knocking on the wall. Then she gets a notification that she needs to take a pill.
She gets a package delivery with no label. Could it be for one of her roommates? What’s in the box? Why would someone send her that?
Whenever a character in a horror film is seen taking pills, you immediately start wondering if they are hallucinating the rest of the story. “Off their meds” is a pretty common trope in fiction. That may or may not be the case here, but the doubt is always there and makes it interesting.
The acting and direction here are really good, but the standout thing with this one might be the music. It’s perfect for the story; it’s simple but with enough variety to make it interesting.
Jeepers Creepers III (2017)
• Directed by Victor Salva
• Written by Victor Salva
• Stars Stan Shaw, Gabrielle Haugh, Brandon Smith
• Run Time: 1 Hour, 41 Minutes
Spoiler-Free Judgment Zone
This was another worthy sequel to the first. It smoothly takes place between the first and second movies. So you could watch them perfectly in the order 1, 3, 2. There’s a little more weapons action and supernatural elements in this one, and it’s still really entertaining like the first two were.
We see someone running from one of the Creeper’s bone shurikens. Just as he’s about to flag down a truck, something grabs him from above and flies away.
Twenty-three years later, the police find the Creeper’s corpse-filled truck left over after the first film ended. Sheriff Dan arrives, and he recognizes the truck. The sergeant fills us in on the deaths at the police station and Darry’s kidnapping at the end of the first film. The truck is filled with all sorts of deadly boobytraps.
While the sheriff checks out the damage at the station, someone tows away the evil truck. Dan knows that this has all happened before. Meanwhile, on the tow truck, the Creeper arrives, and he wants his truck back. The truck drives itself as the Creeper rides away on top. The sheriff knows all about the Creeper; “All we can do is follow the birds. Ravens and crows travel when it does.” He ran into it 23 years ago, and they remember each other.
The next morning, Gaylen Brandon talks to Kenny. He’s her dead son, who warns her, “He’s coming back.” There’s a piece of it buried there. He knows things because “I’m part of it now.” He wants her to leave to save herself and Addison. Addison, meanwhile, watches her crazy grandmother talking to no one out in the field. Gaylen tells Addison she should go away for a few days, just in case.
Sheriff Dan assembles a group of local people who have run into the Creeper in the past. One of the men has a super-charged Gatling gun mounted on his pickup truck. Sgt. Davis needs some convincing that this isn’t all some crazy nonsense.
Addison goes to the Mathers farm to get hay to feed her beloved horse— they haven’t got enough money to pay for it. Beth Mathers says her brother Kirk has a rabbit in his trap but likes to torment the rabbits. They don’t have any hay, so Addison has to see the Hooks. They don’t have any credit left, but Buddy Hooks has a crush on her.
Kirk and his biking friends come across the Creeper’s truck in a field. They know the story about the 23-year thing, and they know the name of the license plate. They’re creeped out but don’t find it that simple when they try to break the windows. The back door opens, and they find bodies. They luckily avoid the door’s booby trap but not the bone harpoon. The Creeper arrives in broad daylight and throws a spear through two of Kirk’s friends.
Buddy catches up with Addison and has some hay for her, bought with his own money from their business against his father’s opinion. They return to Addison’s farm and find old lady Gaylen digging in the field.
Sheriff Dan calls for Gaylen; he knows she was involved 23 years ago as well. Gaylen finds what she’s looking for: a clawed, severed hand. It grabs her hand and lifts her off the ground; her eyes turn white.
Buddy and Addison go to a farm to deliver hay for others, and the people there - those still surviving - are hiding under their vehicles. Something in the air has been attacking them. They soon encounter the monster, who smells them and likes Addison. The Creeper grabs her and flies away with her.
The sheriff and sergeant come to Gaylen’s farm, but she already knows “it” is back. We get a flashback showing us how Kenny got the claw 23 years ago and buried it in the field. When she touched the hand, she understood how it came to be and what it is.
Addison and Kirk wake up in the back of the Creepermobile, and they cut themselves loose of their bindings. Kirk finds another boobytrap the hard way.
The sheriff and his men converge on Gaylen’s farm to deal with the claw. They all hold onto Dan as he touches the claw. His eyes turn white as he has a vision as well. He can’t explain much, but it’s much older and bigger than anyone knew; “It’s ancient.”
Buddy cries to his dad about what happened but then joins the others.
The sheriff and sergeant catch up to the Creeper’s truck. The truck is not only un-shootable, but it drops landmines of a sort. Bullets fired at the truck reflect toward the shooter. Miller, the guy with the Gatling gun, approaches, and we know how that will go. It does exactly what we expect, going badly for him and his driver.
Sheriff Dan mans the crashed truck’s Gatling when the cars all crash. The Creeper, now on foot, approaches the sheriff and the super gun. The gun fills the Creeper full of lead, but that doesn’t stop him from killing the sheriff.
Gaylen buries the claw back on the hill and waits with her gun. Kenny warns her that she can’t stop the Creeper. Buddy shows up and tells what happened to Addison.
The Creeper comes for Addison, and she uses the truck’s boobytraps against him. He loses an eye and a wing but still comes after her. The creature runs out into the highway and gets hit by a semi-truck. Soon, the Creeper has two eyes again, courtesy of the truck driver. The Creeper gets his claw back and screams. The screams make the crows fall from the sky dead. Buddy rescues Addison.
The next morning, Buddy comes to see Addison. Buddy puts on his yellow team jacket and boards the school bus to go to the big game…
In one final scene, Trish, from the first film, swears to be ready for the Creeper when he reappears.
This takes place between the first and the second films. Everyone drives antique cars to keep the time period vague, but Kirk and his friends have a cell phone, so this couldn’t be too far back. We see the Creeper outside a lot in the daytime, and we also see him using a police scanner to know what the cops are up to. Actually, we might see too much of the Creeper here; I’m not sure having the majority of the film shot in the daytime was a great idea.
I like that they brought back the creepy truck from the first film. That was an important part of what made that one so good, and this time, they added some magic to the truck. This film, however, didn’t show the Creeper doing as much flying as the second film did, which was a disappointment.
They added a good amount of lore to the Creeper without still giving too much away. We see a lot more supernatural stuff than we did in the first two films, but considering the probably-demonic nature of the Creeper, that’s OK here.
Jeepers Creepers Reborn (2022)
• Directed by Timo Vuorensola
• Written by Sean-Michael Argo
• Stars Sydney Craven, Imran Adams, Jarreau Benjamin
• Run Time: 1 Hour, 28 Minutes
Spoiler-Free Judgment Zone
This one was a step down in quality from the first 3. A different actor is playing the Creeper, they redid how he looks and eased him a little more into a “Jason from Friday the 13th” kind of killer. It’s a less scary story with some elements that don’t make much sense. We didn’t hate it, but it was a disappointment.
Ronald and Marie, an old couple, drive through the countryside in the afternoon. A big truck with the license plate “BEATINGU” comes up behind them. It’s not the same truck, but it’s got the same horn. They pass the truck later and see the driver dumping a body into a pipe near an old church. The truck pursues them and runs them off the road. Ronald writes down the license number to call the police when he gets the chance. As they return to the road, they see the Creeper change his license plates to something more generic.
Ronald wants to return to that church and see what was in the pipe. They arrive at the old church, so we can see that this is all before the first film. They check out the pipe, and Marie screams.
We pull out and see that this is an “unsolved mystery” show on the Internet. Liane and Chase are watching it on their phone. That happened twenty-something years ago. She laughs at his gullibility, but he’s into all the creepy monster stuff like Mothman. Chase tells her the story of the twenty-three-year legend. Didn’t they make three of those “Creepy Creeper” movies? The pair is on their way to a horror convention, but the location doesn’t seem to be on any map (it must be a great convention center).
We see that Chase is planning to propose to Laine sometime very soon. Elsewhere, we see a withered, filthy, half-dead-looking creeper crawling in the dirt and pulling his skin off. Waking up after 23 years is apparently pretty rough.
Sam, one of Laine’s friends, calls Laine, and she says that she’s probably pregnant. He gets out of the car to pee, and the newborn Creeper eats his face.
Laine stops in at a creepy antique store and gets creepy directions from a creepy psychic proprietor who calls someone after they leave and says, “We have a tree bearing fruit.” Chase wants to cosplay for the convention, but Laine pretends to be disinterested. He turns on the TV, and they’re doing a show from the convention.
Laine and Chase arrive at the “Horror Hound” and see a weird preacher out front talking about sinners. Kevin said this Horror Hound gathering “is a ghetto horror ren-fest, not a convention.” We see the Creeper walking around just outside the grounds.
There’s a throwing game, and one of the weapons is one of the Creepers, shurikens. Laine finds it disturbing. They’re reproductions, of course, because the Creeper is only a legend. Right? No, Laine gets a vision from handling one of them, of a cult with her involved.
At midnight, they have a “Creeper Draw.” Madame Carnage is the master of ceremonies. The grand prize is an escape room for two that’s Creeper-themed. Lady Manilla draws for the winner, and we see that she’s the creepy psychic from earlier. Guess whose name she draws? Yep, we saw her rig the drawing earlier.
So Chase and Laine win the prize of spending the night in the “Creeper House,” as an Internet show. Jaime, the producer, is coming along to film everything along with Michael, Carrie, and Stu. They leave for the prize as the Creeper knocks out all the Wi-Fi for the convention by knocking the tower over with his truck. The Creeper heads into the convention with his weapons.
As the group walks to the haunted house, cameraman Michael gets eaten. The Creeper swoops in from somewhere and grabs Laine. Chase tries to convince the others what happened, but they don’t believe him. Then they find Michael’s body, and they believe that.
Laine wakes up tied to a table as the Creeper cuts into her. Chase, Carrie, Jaime, and Stu go into the haunted house, and the cultists (he has cultists now?) seal them inside. Jaime thinks it’s all part of the escape room gimmick, and they want out.
They go upstairs and find Sam’s body hanging from the rafters. The Creeper breaks in through a skylight, and Stu shoots him in the hand. Then he blasts them with an ultrasonic whistle noise. Downstairs, Laine cuts her ropes and gets loose. She grabs a knife and some shurikens from a nearby table and starts looking for a way out.
Chase finds a phone and calls 911, but they think he’s on drugs. Jaime steps into a bear trap. Laine has another vision about cultists. The Creeper gets Carrie and plays his favorite song as he eats her brain. The survivors find an altar and a secret dungeon full of corpses. Laine tells Chase that she’s pregnant, and the baby is what the Creeper wants.
Jaime dies next, and the Creeper gets more play out of his only record. The Creeper faces down Laine while Stu and Chase sneak upstairs. She stabs him on both sides of the head with shurikens, and he’s not happy about it.
Chase and Stu throw a huge wind vane off the roof, impaling the Creeper right through the head. Then a bunch of crows attack, and Stu falls to his death. The birds swarm the Creeper’s body until he’s all gone. Chase and Laine stagger out to the road as the police finally arrive.
The crows all gather together in the graveyard and reconstitute a new Creeper.
The creature has been re-designed to look like a cross between a giant Gremlin and a burn victim. Nope. Didn’t like it. They didn’t want to pay for the rights to the original “Jeepers Creepers” song, so they made up a new one with no tune whatsoever.
Most outdoor sets are done on a soundstage, and it all looks pretty artificial. There’s way too much CGI here that is far too noticeable. It was obvious, but it gave the film’s outdoor scenes an interesting look, so that was actually OK.
It’s pretty bad overall. Who takes a monster as interesting as the Creeper and thinks it’s necessary to put him in a haunted house film— with cultists, no less? What are the cultists getting out of all this? Why did the Creeper suddenly want a baby?
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