The year might be wrapping up, but the indie horror lineup isn’t just yet. This month’s newest release of Crypsis, written and directed by Paul Anthony Rogers, might just be the fix you didn’t know you needed.
Crypsis' editing is a bit chaotic at times. The film includes a montage at the beginning, which looks similar to a 90s skate film or an intro to a true crime show. It’s creative but feels a bit too clunky the more it goes on. I like that they really went for it even if it doesn’t always work. It is apparent there was a lot of passion and drive in telling this story. There are a couple good chuckles and I appreciate the overall direction of the film, especially the scares. I knew the monster is lurking around but it really took me by surprise every time it appears. Every scene with the monster is paced and cut to perfection. I feel like the film would have benefitted from more of it.
A group of friends spend the night on an island on a bet that they won’t last the whole night through. They end up being hunted by a mysterious creature in the forest and have to work together to try to get off the island. We pretty much follow these guys around as they come across this creature and have to figure out how to make an escape raft. For the most part it’s just them not agreeing on anything and getting angry a lot. There’s a decent twist, but the editing sort of botched it as it quickly wrapped and left me a bit confused. I acknowledge the effort and I can see what they were going for. Unfortunately there wasn’t much to it.
ACTING | CHARACTERS | DIALOGUE:
These characters reminded me of surface level versions of the guys from Entourage. The scene of them in the bar being chummy, “Just guys being dudes,” made me weary as to if I would find anything to care about them. They’re pushing thirty yet fighting every five minutes and giving each other crap for being a virgin or not being able to swim. It’s hard not to feel like they deserve to be devoured by whatever is after them.
VISUAL EFFECTS | MAKEUP | DESIGN:
MUSIC | SCORE | SOUND DESIGN:
The monster’s howls from afar are incredible. When it’s up close in your face and all you hear is its breathing is even better. I loved the guitar riffs mixed in with the score, which is something I think horror films today are missing. It looked really dope when the characters and camera were on the move.
The cinematography is pretty good for the most part. I don’t really like found footage thing. They use this tiny camera possibly from the 2000s. They could have used a GoPro for footage that matched the principal photography much better.
This monster is absolutely no joke. It isn’t just a person in a mask, SFX, or simple costume makeup. This thing is slimy, disgusting, and so detailed. It looks like a hybrid of Krampus and the cave people from The Descent (2005). The dedication put into the practical look of this creature is apparent. So many films these days lack that authentication of their monsters. This one will surely be what people, including me, will remember most from this film.
A scary movie most likely lives on in your memories thanks to the monster/thing/creature that ignites that fear. When you do it well, it becomes your mascot for the film. I thought if this monster looks half as good in the film as it does on the poster, I’m in. I wasn’t disappointed in that category at all, but I do wish the overall story had a little more to it. If you’re really into freaky creatures in the good outdoors, Crypsis is surely a solid pick.