Jeepers Creepers II (2003)

(On DVD, February 2016) The first Jeepers Creepers surprised me a bit by its genre savvy and its ability to play with familiar tropes, and the best thing I can say about Jeepers Creeper II is that it’s almost as good as its predecessors at playing with familiar expectations. Largely set on a school bus under attack by a fantastic creature, this sequel milks its premise for all it’s worth, cleverly pacing its action to spend an unlikely amount of time on a deserted rural road. (That bus truly gets trashed by the end of the movie!) While much of the material is generally familiar, writer/director Victor Salva wrings some decent thrills out of his premise. While Jeepers Creepers II doesn’t manage to escape its “invulnerable creature” nature (it does eventually become exasperating to see the creature survive what should have been mortal wounds), it effectively plays within that sandbox and delivers the thrills that anyone could expect from a horror sequel. Heck, even Justin Long has a small cameo in the movie.

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