MOVIE REVIEW: ‘Creep’ Is Incredibly Unsettling


Film: Creep
Starring: Patrick Brice, Mark Duplass
Directed By: Patrick Brice

I have never seen a found footage film quite like Creep, but I always wanted to. It’s a combination of horror, drama, and comedy that is so tightly wound that you never know what to expect from one moment to the next. Credit for this is owed as much to the script as it is to the cast, which consists of just two people, and even though I know it’s still a bit early in 2015 to say such things, I must admit I walked away from Patrick Brice’s first foray into horror knowing without a doubt in my mind it’s the most unsettling film to be released this year.

The idea is simple: Responding to a Craigslist ad that sought a videographer for a one-day job, an unassuming man named Aaron (Patrick Brice) drives to rural California to film a dying man’s final video message to his wife and as-of-yet unborn child. At least, that is why he believes he is taking the job. The real reason he was hired, as well as the story of the man he lured him into one of the more scenic areas of the gold rush state, remains a mystery to Aaron and the audience throughout most of the film. Even when the twists begin to be revealed the true horror of everything happening remains a secret. It’s not until you’re able to step back and consider the movie as a whole, from beginning to end, that the twisted mind of writer/director Patrick Brice reveals its sinister master plan to ensure you never, ever trust strangers you meet online in the real world again.

The man Aaron travels to meet, Josef, is portrayed by indie film everyman Mark Duplass (Safety Not Guaranteed, The League). He and Brice share an on-screen chemistry rarely found in film today, especially POV titles like Creep. The idea of first person is always good in theory, but over a decade of disposable Blair Witch Project-inspired horror has taught viewers otherwise. Making viewers feel the way the person holding the camera does is incredibly hard to accomplish, but through either genius or sheer luck Brice and Duplass pull it off. It’s as much in what you see and hear as it is in what’s left to the imagination. One conversation that, while heard, is never shown on camera and forces viewers to pull together their own mental depiction of events, and the results are likely to send chills down your spine.

Running under 80 minutes, which is perfectly fine for the genre, Creep is a disturbing nightmare of a film that takes twists that may feel familiar, but through innovation and creativity are made new once more. If you go on the adventure Josef hires Aaron to experience with the same open mind as the protagonist there is not a doubt in my mind you will spend the next several days or weeks trying to scrub certain elements of this film from the darkest corners of your mind. Oh, and good luck making new friends.


Review written by James Shotwell

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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