Now, I don’t normally look for recommendations, especially with horror films, but seeing as this was championed by not 1 but 2 of The Snooty Ushers, I felt comfortable giving it a go. (Dan wrote about it in his Negotiating Netflix column check it our here).
I often find the horror genre to be the most cliched, with a repeat helping of jumps, scares, tension and some foreboding horror, a lot of the time involving some creepy looking child and sometimes, just a whole load of gore. Creep (Patrick Brice, 2014) looked a little different.
It is a found footage horror, again I get that this is well trodden ground with the likes of Paranormal Activity, The Blair Witch Project and V/H/S franchises, but Creep, which features only 2 characters, does things a little different.
The story revolves around Aaron (Patrick Brice, who also directs and co-writes), who is an independent videographer who answers a Craigslist ad to film a cancer victim’s Josef’s (Mark Duplass, who also co-writes) message to his unborn child. All Aaron has to do is record Josef throughout the day and capture him as a normal dad doing normal dad things and remain quiet in the process. Josef seems strange but the money is too good for Aaron to pass up, so he agrees to the task. Throughout the day, Josef keeps involving Aaron in more and more disturbing activities and the video becomes less about the unborn child and more about the relationship between the 2 leads. As the day wears on Aaron becomes more suspicious of Josef and truly wonders if his actions are that of playful dad or if he has a sinister side or even some kind of mental instability.
The films does have it’s shortcomings, in that Aaron is slightly too dumb to be at all relatable and while I get that the point of him being where he is, is that he needs money, one of the 1st things he has to do is film Josef naked in the bathtub. At this point I probably would think something was a bit fishy and just left but for the purpose of the film it’s a good job he sticks around after so many weird requests. I would have also loved it if they advanced the Josef character in a slightly more subtle way, instead we find out he has a screw loose almost instantly and the name of the film is a slight giveaway as to what the film entails.
Despite that, there are many disturbing elements to the film. One stand out scene is the wolf mask which Aaron finds and the creepy explanations as to why its in the house, The wolfs name is Peachfuzz and it creates some of the most disturbing and tense scenes in the film, one of them is simply Josef wearing the mask and just standing completely still.
What sets Creep apart from the other found footage film is the chemistry between the 2 characters and with Brice and Duplass also writing the film, they got to know each-other really well and throw in enough twists and turns to keep even the most experienced horror veteran interested. The last 30 minutes get very intense and the film did something I did not expect, the roles of the characters basically get swapped and a new dynamic between the characters in created.
Clocking in at Just 82 minutes, it is just the right length for this kind of film and as found footage films go, this one stands tall above the rest of them.Creep is for sure a diamond in the rough but with a lovely little setting, a minimalist cast and a cool story to boot. I highly recommend that you get involved.