Horrid visual and auditory graphics that remove all immersion
Doesn't get that meta horror balance right at all
Above all, lacks the pacing to carry the plot through
In 2001, Victor Salva’s Jeepers Creepers film introduced the Creeper, who soon became a cult-favourite boogeyman. Some would have described it as Goosebumps for adults, with numerous genuine icks and the plot of a goofy horror film. A lot of us didn’t know what to make of it.
So when Jeepers Creepers: Reborn was announced as a reboot, one hoped that it would masterfully walk the line of being a meta horror parody while shoving in the scares. What with the way film technology has evolved since 2001 and the self-aware tone that the horror genre has seen resurgence of – think The Babysitter, Fear Street, the Candyman reboot. The reboot is directed by Finnish director Timo Vuorensola and features a cast led by Sydney Craven, Imran Adams, Ocean Navarro, all of whom are plagued by a horrendous script, which, at best, is written like an unintentional parody.
Adams plays Chase, a horror fanboy on his way to the Horror Hound festival with his girlfriend, who occasionally visions of herself caught in some sort of bloody, ritualistic sacrifice. The couple win a visit to a Creeper-themed escape room, which is where the Creeper unleashes itself upon them and its primary target – the baby in Laine’s (Sydney Craven) stomach.
While the movie opens on a strong note picking up from the original Jeepers Creepers trilogy, the general feeling of something sinister hanging in the air dissipates as it becomes remarkedly obvious how half-heartedly the film is paced. The setting is gaudy without finesse. Colour correction is painfully artificial and anti-immersive, props are garish, graphics look like they’re from a 2001 game, and the biggest victim of the film is the villain itself – The Creeper.
While a scare of two is achieved with gore, the Creeper makes for a villain who’s simply too laughable. He appears leathery, large, and is apparently dumb, leaving no factors to be redeemed. The character itself is revealed far too early in the film, a wasted opportunity to relinquish the audience’s fear of the unknown.
Jeepers Creepers: Reborn lacks the skill and tact to hold up to its source material, and has regretfully not updated itself in any manner. On the bright side, the reboot is indeed intended as a trilogy, there’s no way but up from here.