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This is a ride back on nostalgia lane, but not in a very good way. I do love Stephen King, I do like George Romero, and the Creepshow comic that come out sometime in the early 80s was something special, if only for the fact that in those days, the world was a very much non-networked place and it required months and money transfers and daily eager observation of the mailbox to get it after ordering it through the awesome “Castle Rock” fanzine. Good times…

Watching this film version again today (after watching it 35 time in the 80s), I have to admit most episode are underwhelming:

There is “Father’s day”, which show the very simplistic nature of most spook stories in the creepshow tradition: man gets murdered, comes back from grave, hunts everybodt down, done. More a reminiscence to ghost stories than frightening in itself (the 1980s hair, clothes, music and – take this, young people – cassette recorders are actually frightening). “The Lonsesome death of Jordi Verrill” is great basically for the fact that Stephen King stars in it and gives a camp performance as moronic Jordi being eaten by weeds. “Something to Tide You Over” casts Leslie Nielsen very much against his clichéd comedian image, as a betrayed husband with a revenge plot that turns against him, approaching with wet feet splashing….  “The Crate” may be the longest segment, and also the most complete of a story, and a cast that just about looks like a John Carpenter movie: Hal Holbrook and Adrienne Barbeau and Fritz Weaver. Holbrook is always great, he is the last-generation sad faced character that today would be played by William H. Macy. He takes revenge on his annoying wife by showing her the hungry creature that they found in an ancient crate under the college stairs… Finally, “They’re creeping up on you” is in design and style an almost surreal piece about too rich person with too many paranoias, especially about bugs. On the other hand, it turns out he is right to be worried about the cockroaches invading his supposedly air-tight and bug-proof apartment.

With its bracketing prologue and epilogue sequences, and its animated elements to introduce each segment, the film manages to convey the feeling of the comic book. It does not, however, create something very thrilling, and is more a homage to the horror comic books that some of us loved so much when we were little. But I still treasure the comic book with Bernie Wrightson’s illustrations!

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