Jeepers Creepers (2001 film)

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Jeepers Creepers
Jeepers Creepers film.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Victor Salva
Produced by
Written by Victor Salva
Music by Bennett Salvay
Cinematography Don E. FauntLeRoy
Edited by Ed Marx
Distributed by United Artists
Release dates
  • August 31, 2001 (2001-08-31)
Running time
91 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $10 million[1]
Box office $59.2 million[1]

Jeepers Creepers is a 2001 American horror film written and directed by Victor Salva. The film takes its name from the 1938 song "Jeepers Creepers", which is featured in the film.


Two siblings, Trish and her brother Darry, are on their way back home from college for spring break. As they drive through the Florida countryside, an old and rusty truck tries to run them off the road. The vehicle eventually passes them, and they later see the same truck parked next to an old abandoned church, with a man sliding what appears to be a body wrapped in blood stained sheets into a large pipe sticking out of the ground.

The driver notices Trish and Darry watching him, and attempts to run them off the road a second time. After barely escaping, Darry convinces Trish to go back to the church and investigate. When Darry hears something coming from within the pipe he crawls inside with Trish holding on to his feet, but ends up falling in. At the bottom, he finds a dying man with stitches running down his stomach, and hundreds of other bodies covering the basements walls and ceiling. When Darry escapes the two flee the scene and attempt to contact the police at a diner. They are phoned by a strange woman who warns them that they are in terrible danger, but confused and frightened, they ignore her warning. Trish and Darry leave with two police officers providing a security escort. As they travel, the police learn that the old church has gone up in flames, and all evidence of any bodies has been destroyed. They are then attacked and killed by the mysterious driver, who loads the policemen's bodies into his truck.

Fleeing once again, Trish and Darry stop at a reclusive old woman's house, begging her to call the police. The woman complies, until she notices the driver hiding in her yard. She tries to kill him with a shotgun, but the driver kills her and pursues Trish and Darry once again. Trish hits the mysterious driver with their car and runs him over several times, which seemingly kills him. However, they are horrified to see a giant wing tear through his trenchcoat and flap frantically in the air. They drive to the local police station and are approached by psychic Jezelle Gay Hartman. She reveals herself as the woman who called them at the diner and tells them the true nature of their pursuer: it is an ancient creature, known as "The Creeper", which hunts every 23rd spring for 23 days to feast on human body parts, which then becomes a parts of its own body. She also tells them that it seeks out its victims through fear, and that by smelling the fear from Trish and Darry it has found something it likes, but she does not know what.

The wounded Creeper attacks the police station and gains entrance to the cells. After feasting on prisoners to heal, he is swarmed by police, but evades capture. Meanwhile, Jezelle, Trish and Darry attempt to escape but find themselves trapped. Jezelle warns them that one of them will die a horrible death, while the song "Jeepers Creepers" plays on a phonograph in the background. Darry demands to know who, and she looks at Trish. The Creeper discovers them, and they are separated. He heads toward Jezelle, and sniffs her intently, but lets her go, and heads off to find Trish and Darry.

After a lengthy chase, the Creeper corners both Trish and Darry in an upstairs interrogation room. After sniffing and tasting them, the Creeper throws Trish aside and chooses Darry. The police burst in and take aim, and Trish offers her life for her brother's; but, the Creeper escapes out the window and flys away with Darry. The next day, Trish, contemplating Darry's fate, is picked up by her parents, and Jezelle returns home in regret.

The final scene shows the Creeper in its new hideout, an abandoned factory; and the audience finally learns what the Creeper wanted: by ripping out the back of Darry's head, it has taken his eyes. The film ends with The Creeper leering at the audience, through Darry's empty eye socket while "Jeepers Creepers" plays in the background.



Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator, reports that 45% of 108 surveyed critics gave the film a positive review; the average rating was 5.1/10. The sites consensus reads: "Jeepers Creepers has a promising start. Unfortunately, the tension and suspense quickly deflates into genre cliches as movie goes on."[2] Metacritic rated it 49/100.[3] Scott Foundas of Variety wrote that it is "the most conventional and least imaginative of the recent crop of high-class fright movies".[4] Stephen Holden of The New York Times called it "a cannier-than-average teen horror movie" that "disintegrates into a shoot-by-numbers monster hunt".[5] Kevin Thomas of the Los Angeles Times wrote that the film "has the scariest opening sequence of any horror picture in recent memory" but becomes an "amusing horror-comedy, spooky and jolting but too literally preposterous to regain its initial aura of suspense."[6] Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian wrote that the film starts off well but quickly degenerates into cliche.[7]

Box office[edit]

Jeepers Creepers opened in 2,944 theaters and took in a domestic gross of $37,904,175; it later made $21,313,614 internationally, making a total of $59,217,789 worldwide.[1]

It broke the record for the highest ever Labor Day opening weekend gross. The record for Labor Day weekend four-day gross is now held by Halloween (2007). Jeepers Creepers now holds the #5 spot and the #3 spot goes to its successor, Jeepers Creepers 2.[8]



Jeepers Creepers 2[edit]

Main article: Jeepers Creepers 2

In 2003, a sequel was released, Jeepers Creepers 2. Events in the second film take place days after the first film. The Creeper and Darry are the only characters to appear in both films, although they are not the only actors to appear in both films. In the first film, actor Tom Tarantini appears as the minor character "Austin McCoy" AKA "Roach" who is a car thief and regular in the Poho County jail. In the second film, he portrays "Coach Dwayne Barnes".

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Jeepers Creepers (2001). Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2010-10-24.
  2. ^ "Jeepers Creepers (2001)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2014-07-25. 
  3. ^ "Jeepers Creepers". Metacritic. Retrieved 2014-07-25. 
  4. ^ Foundas, Scott (2001-08-26). "Review: 'Jeepers Creepers'". Variety. Retrieved 2014-07-25. 
  5. ^ Holden, Stephen (2001-08-31). "Jeepers Creepers (2001)". The New York Times. Retrieved 2014-07-25. 
  6. ^ Thomas, Kevin (2001-08-31). "Clever 'Jeepers Creepers' Pushes Too Far". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2014-07-25. 
  7. ^ Bradshaw, Peter (2001-10-18). "Jeepers Creepers". The Guardian. Retrieved 2014-07-25. 
  8. ^ All Time Labor Holiday Weekends. Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2010-10-24.
  9. ^ Mentioned in the directors commentary audio track, in the Jeepers Creepers DVD

External links[edit]

Preceded by
American Pie 2
Box office number-one films of 2001 (USA)
September 2
Succeeded by
The Musketeer