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Film / Creep (2004)

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Creep is a British-German horror movie set within The London Underground, starring Franka Potente and Sean Harris.

Kate, a young, snooty socialite, ends up getting trapped in the underground after missing the last train. During a sexual assault she meets Creep, aka Craig, a malformed, extremely strong psychopath who goes to extreme lengths to hunt her down. Eventually, she does get caught, but she escapes and learns some clues about Craig's past before the final confrontation with him.

The movie is a classic horror movie playing on our fear of the dark, enclosed spaces and ugly balding people with knives.

Not to be confused with the 2014 American film Creep.

This film provides examples of:

  • Abandoned Hospital: Creep's home is part of an abandoned medical facility sectioned off from the London underground. It's implied that clandestine experimentation took place there, resulting in Creep being born.
  • Absurdly-Spacious Sewer: Justified and played straight. The maintenance tunnels underneath the subway are accessible to humans, and the tunnels closer to the Abandoned Hospital aren't specifically meant to exist — given that the hospital is an underground abortion clinic hidden in the subway. Played straight with the sewers in the opening.
  • Black Dude Dies First: Subverted. George is one of the first characters to appear, and he ends up surviving a lot of the film - until he ends up as Craig's final victim. The director's commentary mentions that George's actor was fully expecting to have his character die within ten pages of the script because of this trope, but was pleasantly surprised when he found out that wasn't the case.
  • Bloody Handprint: The DVD cover features one on a train window. Also used in the film, when Creep smears his blood-soaked hand over the security monitor.
  • Bittersweet Ending: With a heavy lean on the bitter. Kate and Ray (the dog) both survive, but all the other major characters have been horribly killed and Kate is completely traumatised by everything that's happened.
  • Character Development: Kate goes from a petty mean-spirited Rich Bitch disregarding the problems of anyone else to a cowardly but understandable victim who tries to invoke Screw the Rules, I Have Money! and doesn't try to help or be nice but at least cares for what's happening to others, to a Lovable Coward who cares about these people and their problems and tries to help but flees to an Action Survivor who won't let the others behind and has a certain level of badassery.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Kate's shoes. (Well, one of them.) The piece of jagged metal then drops down when George starts busting up the window panes.
  • Darkness Equals Death: A majority of the deaths happen in the near-pitch black tunnels of the London Underground.
  • Eye Scream: All over the place. The first corpse seen (that of one of the train drivers) has a piece of metal driven through his eye, Kate drives her stiletto heel through Creep's eye, and, in their final confrontation, Creep shoves his thumbs into George's eye sockets.
  • Facial Horror: Jimmy's fate. Grabbed by the head and crushed it with his fingers digging into the face.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Subverted twice:
    • When Creep slits the Security Supervisor's throat, the camera cuts away to focus on Kate just as he starts doing it - only for it to cut back again to show the full, gory result.
    • When Creep is killing Mandy, the camera cuts away just as he stabs her in the groin with a saw... and then we return to him later, still sawing away at her corpse. The viewer doesn't actually get to see the corpse as he's doing it... but, taking into account the grisly noises combined with blood splattering all over Creep as he hacks into the corpse, you don't need to see it to be horrified.
  • Groin Attack: A rare female example, as Mandy is stabbed in between her legs with a surgical saw.
  • The Grotesque: Creep, which helps add to his scariness.
  • Heroic BSoD: Kate. After escaping from her ordeal, she just sits silently on the platform, staring into space.
  • Hope Spot: A particularly brutal one. When Mandy starts stirring, revealing that she's still alive (although just barely), it seems that Kate might just turn around and notice her... but she never does.
  • Implacable Man: Creep takes a hefty beating throughout the film, yet loses almost zero energy and can still fight and kill with relative ease.
  • It's Personal: After Mandy is taken and presumed dead, Jimmy personally decides to go after Creep himself, despite knowing he'll probably die in the process.
  • Jump Scare: Several, with Creep's first full appearance among for most jarring.
  • Laughing Mad: At the end, Kate starts to giggle uncontrollably after she's mistaken for a homeless person during her Heroic BSoD. Her giggling quickly dissolves into sobs after everything that's happened hits her all at once.
  • Matchlight Danger Revelation: Used with torches, twice. Happens at the very beginning when Arthur shines his torch around and sees Creep for a split second, and later with Kate when Creep is fully seen for the very first time.
  • Meaningful Background Event: After Kate believes Mandy to be dead, the camera shows Mandy, in the background, still very much alive, trying to get Kate and George's attention. Unfortunately, she's so weak she can barely move, let alone speak.
  • Mistaken For Destitute: At the end of the movie, the traumatised protagonist finds herself dishevelled in the (now active again) train station, where a stranger hands her some money, ironically echoing her own treatment of a homeless person near the beginning of the movie.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: A lot of the film is utterly quiet, save for a very creepy ambient soundtrack reminiscent of Silent Hill.
  • One Crazy Night: A young woman returns home from a party late at night and ends up trapped in the underground after missing the last train. It soon turns out that the underground is inhabited by a hideously deformed serial killer...
  • One-Word Title: As an Antagonist Title, which is a nickname.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Creep has shades of this. It's implied that he was born in a secret underground facility, and it was later abandoned, yet he was left there all alone, with only the infant toys left to give him company.
  • Say My Name:
    • "MANDY!!"
    • "Jimmy... Jimmy... Jimmy... Jimmy..." Made even more horrifying when Creep repeats it to Kate and George later on.
  • Slashed Throat: How the Security Supervisor meets his end, although it isn't a clean slash - his neck is viciously hacked into. Creep himself also meets his end in this way.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: Kate hesitates for a second before hitting Creep. It's blink-or-you-miss-it, but it's there.