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Creep 2 Review

Creep 2 is a 2017 horror film about a video artist looking for work who drives to a remote house in the forest to meet a man claiming to be a serial killer.

Picking up from the first, Patrick Brice‘s Creep 2 is another found footage, low budget chiller with a sharper edge and a bit more horror, flipping it about and finding ways to deliver more on the premise it already established. You don’t need to know anything about the first to jump on board and for fans of the genre and narrative device, will certainly hit the spot.

After a disturbing intro where the film firmly makes clear that Aaron (Mark Duplass), taking the name of his victim from the first, is back on the job, Creep 2 begins not so as a catch-up but a tentpole for the story entire. This guy is off his rocker and now turning 40, feels he needs to up his game, to wither in mediocrity or evolve. Enter Sara (Desiree Akhavan), a failing YouTuber with a series called ‘Encounters’, where she meets weirdly interesting men who have posted ads for such. She’s about to give it all up, deciding her latest will be her last, when she receives an invitation from Aaron, offering her big money for an interview. He’s a serial killer, he says to her, and wants to tell his story, but Sara isn’t quite buying his over-the-top machinations, but as the day progresses, she pushes him and a relationship forms that defies the expected.

On the surface, Creep 2 is basically a remake of the first, or at least a rehash of the formula, but with the gender switch, putting Sara in the mix, it finds some new ground to tread upon, managing to squeeze out plenty of tension. That falls right on Duplass, who has always had this sort of stalkerish quality about him – in the best possible way – and makes every frame he’s in, if you’ll pardon the wording, creepy. Brice, who co-wrote the story with Duplass, and was the victim in the first, knows well what the genre demands and credit must be given to how well the plausibility of the camera is maintained, a conceit that often traps movie like this into flailing about hoping to build suspense with herky-jerky shots of people running around trying to keep the action on screen. At least here, it makes sense.

To be sure, this is a movie about a setup, and the brilliant opening ignites that start, planting the truth with absolutes so that everything that follows has tremendous weight. Like the previous, it is not a slasher movie but a psychological thriller pitting two decidedly whacked-out personalities in the same room. Akhavan does well as the interviewer with a cold streak of her own, ambivalent and disbelieving of everything Aaron does, and it’s true that the more Aaron prattles on, we wonder ourselves what he’s up to. If it weren’t for how it starts, we’d be wholly unsure. It literally keeps the entire film on edge.

Creep 2, with its 80 minute runtime, is a brief encounter, but an affecting one. It leads us down an always compelling path and is greatly salvaged by its performances, wisely deviating from the conventions of modern horror in favor of a more surreal experience. It’s twisted and well worth a look.

Creep 2 Review

Movie description: Creep 2 is a 2017 horror film about a video artist looking for work who drives to a remote house in the forest to meet a man claiming to be a serial killer. 

Director(s): Patrick Brice

Actor(s): Mark Duplass, Desiree Akhavan

Genre: Horror

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