Film Review: Creeped Out
A small block of neighbors have something more sinister to deal with than COVID during their quarantine in Creeped Out, a short screwball comedy film by Matt Holt. A woman, Kishi (Rita Jagpal-Mohan) attempts to seek help after an encounter with her horny neighbor a.k.a. Lewdo (Stuart Horobin).
An older man Adrian (Peter McManus) pledges to retaliate against Lewdo rambo-style with a nerf gun while Narcia (Catherine Harris) is more concerned with judging Kishi than she is with calling the cops to arrest the neighborhood pervert.
Larger than life characters spring off the page with fun banter written by Keith Large. Keith throws in some clever COVID-related jokes as the plot heats up, all of which we can relate to no doubt. Rita’s performance as the voice-of-reason to her two absurdist neighbors plays well for comedy. She provides a window that most viewers can level with. Everyone has probably dealt with a Peter or Catherine, neighbors who get in your business whether you like it or not. Peter provides a delightful bit of action-comedy to the mix while Catherine’s performance as the nosy neighbor has us chuckling from insult comedy. All characters weren’t afraid to go ham, and it really works with the lighthearted style.
While these characters rile with dysfunction, Lewdo schemes a way to get back with Kishi after initially attempting to trap her in a garage. Stuart’s performance is so silly and heightened as the pervert that it offers enough of a break from reality to warrant amusement over fear. It’s innocent enough that even a teen or young adult could watch without worry.
With regard to the pervert encounter, what could be obscene is handled with charm by director Matt Holt. Holt keeps the situation and camera movements playful and light. He emphasizes performance through the utilization of primarily close-ups and two shots with zippy whip pans for style.
The short ends with a satisfying conclusion: a confrontation with Lewdo, and a realization with who Lewdo really is in the neighborhood dynamic. This playful romp offers a delightful distraction from the ennui of isolation and devastation of COVID. It reminds us that even though we can do our best to remain alone during this quarantine, we cannot always control the actions of our neighbors. You do kind of wonder after all the rigamarole, though, has anybody caught COVID?
Creeped Out - Trailer