Well, I don’t know what to tell ya. I have no idea how the hell you are going to see this movie or when you are going to see it, considering it was just in theaters for one night and that night was last night, but I’m going to review it anyway, so that when it eventually pops up in that $5 Blu-Ray bin, or is available to rent from a streaming service, or available as part of your Netflix subscription, that you might want to leave the first and second films as a good distant memory, and pretend JEEPERS CREEPERS 3 never even existed.
When you have a third film in any kind of franchise, you usually have to go all out, even in horror, where you know there are several sequels yet to come. Scream 3, Dream Warriors, Child’s Play 3, Friday the 13th part 3, Saw III, Paranormal Activity 3, even though we know there are still more sequels to come, the films double down on its hand just in case there isn’t. There are certain rules, one must abide by in order to successful create a sequel to a horror film, and continue the franchise. It still has to follow horror film rules in general. Jeepers Creepers 3 breaks every single one of these rules, and then some.
I think we should go over some if not all of these rules shall we? Should make for an interesting and different review:
Horror Rule Number 1: Never, ever, show your monster in the daylight.
And that is all that Jeepers Creepers 3 does. I don’t remember the Creeper at night until the very, very end of the film. There is a reason for this which breaks one of the horror rules mentioned below, and this could’ve been completely unavoidable is this whole plot was scrapped, but they went with it, so the creeper is only shown during the day. What’s the problem with this? 99% of the time if your monster is shown during the day, it isn’t scary. The 1% of the time goes to IT and the original Halloween, because with IT the kids being out at night wouldn’t have made a whole bunch of sense (wait until they are adults, it will just be midnight scary madness then) and Halloween works because we needed to see Michael Myers stalk these babysitters on the way home from school. But the Creeper, being almost completely at night in the first two films, is in complete daylight here, and isn’t scary at all, and unfortunately very comical.
Horror Rule Number 2: DO NOT EVER make a third film where the story takes place between two others.
You can go all the way before, or you can go all the way after. If you go all the way before, or if for some reason you fuck up this rule like Jeepers Creepers 3 does, you have to reveal vital information on the monster/situation at hand. Final Destination 5 went all the way before, and it’s plot twist worked. Paranormal Activity 3 went back to when the terror started for the sisters, and it worked because it gave us new information. Jeepers Creepers 3 takes place in between films 1 and 2, which is why it is set mostly during the day. The movie seems like it is about to give us new info (like the original of the creature and how to really kill it), but it never does, it just hints at it and instead it gives us a very stupid cliffhanger that promises all will be revealed in #4 when the timeline finally goes back to after part 2. Stupid. Because of this story, we get the creeper in full daylight, making him not frightening at all. Plus, if you have the film between two others, you know that the menace likely survives, so all your would be tension goes straight out the window.
3. Horror Rule Number 3: Keep it simple, stupid.
Controversial writer/director Victor Salva, who helmed the other two, tries to put in way too many characters, and hints at way too much lore about the Creeper that is ultimately never revealed, making everything too confusing for the audience to care. With horror films, unless you are a film like Saw. Keep it simple, even when you actually have a plot, keep it simple. Scare your audience, not confuse the shit out of the them with too much crap put in. There are so many characters in this, none of them had any development whatsoever. And there are backstories hinted at, that are never truly revealed, which is a big no no here. I don’t care if you think there is going to be a #4, reveal what you hint at or promise. Or at least reveal most of it, and then it would be okay to keep a few things for later. Prometheus had that problem of asking too many questions and not answering them. Jeepers Creepers 3 literally tells Prometheus to hold it’s beer.
You can tell this film was cheaply made, in my eyes it is not even worth a Netflix release. This is straight up Sharknado, Sci-Fi channel only territory. Part of the fact is probably that Victor Salva had a small as fuck budget and this is the best he thinks he could’ve come up with. I disagree, I’ve seen some even cheaper Sci-Fi channel shit that had more heart than this. This was just lazy. Long takes to make the film longer than it needed to be. Horrible, terrible, CGI that was painful to watch. Terrible, laughable acting around every corner. The only good part of the film was that the Creeper’s truck was outfitted with some cool booby traps that would’ve looked fantastic with a huge budget. With what they had…it all looked terrible.
In the end, it completely looked like a student fan made Jeepers Creepers film. And with the original writer and director on board, no matter how controversial he is, is a big, big, no no. This movie was absolutely terrible and definitely one of the worst of the year. I bet the film Friend Request had more balls than this film (even though I am not going to see Friend Request until it hits a free market). My theater was packed and sold out with Jeepers Creepers fan and every face coming out of there told me that they were extremely disappointed by what they saw. Jeepers Creepers 3 makes Jeepers Creepers 1 and 2 look like The Exorcist and A Nightmare on Elm Street. If there is a 4th, Salva will have to try extremely hard to get more peepers, including mine, interested in ever seeing it.