Recently released on video-on-demand is the horror movie, Jeepers Creepers: Reborn. The film stars Sydney Craven, Imran Adams, and Jarreau Benjamin, and follows the story of a young couple who cross paths with a monstrous creature.
In the movie, Laine and her boyfriend Chase are travelling out to the sticks in the US, to attend a horror convention. This is something Chase is very excited about, as he’s a fan of horror, as well as myths and urban legends.
One such urban legend which has always fascinated him is that of the Creeper – a terrifying winged creature, who feasts on human flesh. According to legend, the Creeper awakes from hibernation every 23 years, to chow down on people for 23 days, before going back into a slumber.
But what Chase doesn’t know is the Creeper is real, it has been 23 years since he last went to sleep, and now he’s up and about and has one heck of an appetite. Oh, and to make matters worse, he just happens to have woken up in the exact same spot that Chase and Laine are heading towards.
Will they be able to survive the Creeper’s feeding frenzy or will they become the main course? And more importantly, will this latest entry in the Jeepers Creepers film franchise be an improvement on what has come before?
If you’re new to the Jeepers Creepers series then there are a few important things you should know. Some of this is essential reading, so please pay attention.
First and foremost, Jeepers Creepers: Reborn is the fourth entry in the franchise, following in the footsteps of Jeepers Creepers (2001), Jeepers Creepers 2 (2003) and Jeepers Creepers 3 (2017). However, unlike those other films, which were all part of the same continuity, Jeepers Creepers: Reborn is a reboot of the franchise.
In this new entry, the previous three films are fictional movies that exist in the ‘Reborn’ universe. So, if you’re a total newbie you don’t need to worry about playing catch-up.
The second thing you need to know, is that this latest film is directed by Timo Vuorensola and not Victor Salva, the controversial creator/writer/director of the first three films. The Jeepers Creepers series is attempting to move away from the past, and this in turn means sidestepping away from Salva and everything connected to him.
And then there’s the third thing that you need to know, which is that Jeepers Creepers: Reborn is complete and utter rubbish. All of the Jeepers Creepers films are pretty bad in general (with the exception of the first half of the first movie), but this latest offering is a whole new level of shit.
Badly written, terribly acted, and featuring some underwhelming (and frankly piss-poor) special effects, Jeepers Creepers: Reborn is a turgid mess of a movie. It starts off bad, then gets worse, and ends diabolically.
As Jeepers Creepers: Reborn opens, the film begins by riffing on the original movie. The first ten minutes are essentially a reminder of the best part of the very first film, with a couple of people travelling down a highway in their car, only to be met by a big-ass truck driven by the Creeper.
This part of the movie is a re-tread of past glories and is the ONLY good part of Jeepers Creepers: Reborn. And I should add, that I’m using the term “only good part” very, very loosely.
However, once this section of the movie is done and dusted, it becomes very clear why it was included. Sure, it might seem like an attempt at a fun call back for long-time fans, a little homage if you will; but I believe this opening sequence is only included because Jeepers Creepers: Reborn is devoid of any other ideas to fill out its run-time.
What follows this opening ten minutes is a poor attempt at a movie, slung together with terrible dialogue, various clichés, and ideas that appear to have been lifted from old horror movies from the early 2000s. It is the sort of shite that would go direct-to-DVD back in 2004, and would clog up the bottom shelves of Blockbuster.
To say the script for Jeepers Creepers: Reborn is bad is an understatement. The longer the film went on, the more I became convinced the script was written down on the back of a fag packet, before being tossed out completely, with the actors forced to improvise their scenes on the day of shooting.
This film has various ideas (a cult, a baby, a horror con, an abandoned house), but few of them really go together, and even fewer make sense. It is as if the story has been put together by someone who has watched half-a-dozen low-rent horror movies and has decided to make a mash-up of the lot.
And because none of the story works, and most of the ideas are stretched out beyond belief, the film also has to introduce some filler material to paper over the cracks. One of these ‘filler’ moments includes a scene in which Chase convinces his girlfriend Laine to try on some cosplay outfits.
This leads to an oddly inserted montage sequence, where Laine tries on four different costumes, including ‘sexy’ Freddy Krueger (it’s a thing apparently) and Harley Quinn. Of course, Chase doesn’t follow suit with his own dress-up montage, because who wants to see a boy in costumes when you can get a foxy girl to dress up as Harley Quinn instead?!
Yes, this is the mentality of this film. It’s the sort of thinking and scriptwriting that went out ten years ago and does not need to rear its ugly head again.
But as bad as the script is for Jeepers Creepers: Reborn, it’s nothing in comparison to the truly abysmal special effects, which range from shoddy to downright embarrassing. The budget for Jeepers Creepers: Reborn comes in at around $5 million and I’m guessing that about $6.85 went on the effects.
First up, the prosthetics used on the Creeper are dreadful. I’ve seen better make-up on Instagram cosplayers, who have zero budget and are coming up with costume ideas in their bedroom.
And then there are the computer-generated effects in this movie, which are so bad it is laughable. The CGI and blue screen work in this film looks as if it was produced on an old PC, which is still using floppy discs and operating on Windows 98.
None of the effects are believable, and every time some CGI is required the whole thing instantly takes you out of the movie. Not that you’ll be invested in any of the film anyway, because it is all such generic tosh.
The film runs approximately 88 minutes long, which is about 89 minutes longer than it should. Even just writing out this review feels like I’m prolonging the experience of Jeepers Creepers: Reborn and in turn wasting both my time and yours.
Oh, and I’ve not even spent time ranting about the terrible acting, but I’ll tell you what, let’s just take it on good faith that it’s all very bad and we shall speak no more of it. Not that I blame any of the actors in this film for giving such awful performances, when really they should be thanked for seeing it through to the end.
If I have one good thing to say about Jeepers Creepers: Reborn it is that this film took the wise decision to (sort of) distance itself from the other movies. Those previous films were largely crap, so at least Jeepers Creepers: Reborn recognised this in an attempt to move forward.
But alas, there is no moving forward, because Jeepers Creepers: Reborn is ultimately far worse than any of its predecessors. It offers nothing new, nothing interesting, and nothing worth sitting through.
As far as I’m concerned, the whole Jeepers Creepers franchise is a big fat turd. The best thing to do is push it, flush it, wash your hands, and walk away completely.