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DVD: Jeepers Creepers 2 (2003)
Review Rating:   Very Good  
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December 23, 2003



Genre: Horror  
Every 23rd Spring, a winged, demonic creature feeds off small townsfolk with serious short-term memories of carnage past. With less than 24 hours to go, the creature sets his baby blues on a school bus packed with jocks and cheerleaders.  



Directed by:

Victor Salva
Screenplay by: Victor Salva
Music by: Bennett Salvay
Produced by: Tom Luse

Ray Wise,  Jonathan Breck,  Garikayi Mutambirwa,  Eric Nenninger,  Nicki Aycox,  Travis Schiffner,  Lena Cardwell,  Billy Aaron Brown,  Marieh Delfino,  Diane Delano,  Thom Gossom, Jr.,  Tom Tarantini

Film Length: 104 mins
Process/Ratio: 2.35 :1
Anamorphic DVD: Yes
Languages:   English (Dolby 5.1),  French (Dolby Surround),  Spanish (Dolby Surround)
Subtitles:   English,  French,  Spanish
Special Features :  

Audio Commentary #1: 1. Director Victor Salva and Actors Shaun Fleming, Billy Aaron Brown, Travis Schiffner, Garikayi Mutambirwa, Kasan Butcher, Eric Nenninger, Josh Hammond, Marieh Delfino, & Nicki Aycox / Audio Commentary #2: Actor Jonathan Breck, Production Illustrator Brad Parker and Special Effects Makeup Brian Penikas / Deleted Scenes and Moments (15:51) / Behind-the-scenes: "A Day In Hell" (26:42) / Featurettes: "Lights, Camera, Creeper" (15:23) + "Digital Effects by The Orphanage" (5:22) + "Creeper Composer" (10:31) / Deleted Scene Storyboards: "The Creeper Lair" (4:08) and "Ventriloquist Creeper" (1:27) / Film Photo Gallery with 66 images, and DVD Menu Photo Gallery with 58 images / Theatrical trailer for "Jeepers Creepers 2"

Comments :

There's major irony, in that writer/director Victor Salva deliberately constructed the original “Jeepers Creepers” as sequel-proof… but executive producer Francis Ford Coppola urged him to squeeze some life in what became a classic B-movie horror flick, with a more streamlined narrative, and lacking some of the stupid character moves that affected the first film.

MGM/UA's DVD is packed with every conceivable extra fans of the diptych would want, though the commentary tracks are largely unnecessary. With multiple featurettes covering the production, the tracks fill in some minor gaps that make for generally light listening.

Assembling a good chunk of his teenage cast, Salva plays father hen to his companions, as the group watch and recall mostly trivial moments from filming, though there's some good nods to the expert stunt and effects crew during suspense sequences. The second track gathers Creeper actor Jonathan Breck, makeup man Brian Penikas, and illustrator/graphic artist Brad Parker, and the tone and content more or less focus on makeup, the memorable traits of the Creeper, and a deleted “Creeper's Lair” sequence that was dropped prior to shooting.

That sequence, along with a dropped ‘ventriloquist' scene involving a dead character, are showcased via animated storyboards with music score, in separate galleries. Another deleted scene that was filmed – a dreamlike graveyard sequence, littered with cadavers – appears with a fully mixed soundtrack in a montage of deleted scenes and “moments,” arranged chronologically, in a separate gallery.

Composer Bennett Salvay also gets his own featurette, and there's some excellent examples of shock scenes married to Salvay's arresting symphonic music. Split-screens balance the finished material with footage from the recording session, and director Salva also engages in a brief Q&A with the composer.

The remaining featurettes are fairly straightforward, showing some production scenes, actor Breck getting dressed up as the Creeper, and a montage of the film's crisp digital effects. The best featurette remains “A Day In Hell,” in which a small camera crew follows Salva on Day 41 of production.

Deliberately constructed to show the often slow pace of filming, it's also a good overview of the economical planning that gathered green screen and the school bus set in an airplane hangar, with Salva overseeing both aspects simultaneously from his director's chair. Tired yet resolved in spite of the usual production demands, Salva's more down-to-earth here as a director making a horror flick, instead of the idyllic portrait from his effusive cast and crew in “Lights, Camera, Creeper.”


© 2003 Mark R. Hasan

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