Thursday, June 17, 2010

Horror Movie Review: My Bloody Valentine 2009

My Bloody Valentine

Starring: Jensen Ackles, Jaime King, and Kerr Smith

Directed by: Patrick Lussier

Written by: Todd Farmer and Zane Smith based on the story by Stephen Miller and script by John Beaird

Production Company: Lionsgate

Release Date: January 16, 2009

I've never been a big fan of 3D movies. I appreciate what they are trying to do, but it seems like more time is allotted for the set-up of shots to have things coming out at the audience than just setting up cool shots, and it can turn predictable. Now, granted, I didn't see My Bloody Valentine in 3D, and I haven't seen a 3D movie in 3D since Jaws 3, so maybe 3D has improved and I'd be more impressed. But conversion to flat TV seems to hurt 3D films.

The story is very similar to the original. The main characters in both are Tom (TJ in the original), Sarah, and Axel. Both have a maniac miner Harry Warden who goes crazy being trapped in a mine collapse and killing other trapped miners.

But where the original victims were teenagers trying to return their town to normalcy by celebrating Valentine's Day, the new film focuses on young adults character Tom returning to town following the death of his father in order to sell his inheritance, the Kanniger Mine, on which the town depends. Valentine's Day was less of a focus for this film, just being mentioned more in passing.

When someone in mining gear begins killing people, rumors start circulating that Harry Warden, who had supposedly died in a mine cave in after being pursued by the police during his crime spree, had not actually died in that mine, and he had returned.

The ending does a pretty good job of keeping you guessing who the killer is amongst two main characters and, a little less likely but still out there as a possibility, Harry Warden.

I think some of the jumps and shocks would have been more effective in 3D, but on flat TV they didn't translate well. The story was actually more interesting, although it took a while for things to get really murky about who the killer was, going so far as to toy with some horror movie role cliches.

I was puzzled, however, that Valentine's Day wasn't used more. Human hearts removed from bodies and placed in heart shaped candy boxes were a signature in the original, while in this remake it was hardly used. It was easy to forget it was Valentine's Day. And the large collection of Valentine's Day heart boxes, empty, found to incriminate the killer didn't match the few times we found hearts removed. It was more of an after thought. Similar to Axel's mistress Megan being pregnant. Mentioned in one scene and nary mentioned again, even after her death.

In the end I find it to be a less than favorable reimagining, although with some full frontal nudity where the original avoided breasts. It had many promising points, but the final looked more like a jagged connect-the-dots heart with sharp angles rather than smooth curves...except for Betsy Rue, our beautiful, smoothly curved, naked victim.

Related Trailers


Jensen Ackles, who stars as Tom Kanniger, also starred in DeVour. Jake Gray and his friends have been playing a deadly game called "The Pathway", which eventually spirals out of control and threatens a worldwide epidemic of violence.

They Wait

Jaime King, who played Sarah Palmer, also stars in They Wait. A young mother and her six-year-old son come face to face with the mysteries of two murders and a great crime against the Chinese community into which they have recently arrived from Shanghai.

The Forsaken

Kerr Smith, who played Axel Palmer, also starred in The Forsaken. A young man gets embroiled in a war against vampires.

Halloween II

Betsy Rue, who plays naked victim Ilene, also appeared in Halloween II. Laurie Strode struggles to come to terms with her brother Michael's deadly return to Haddonfield, Illinois; meanwhile, Michael prepares for another reunion with his sister.

White Noise 2

Director Patrick Lussier also directed White Noise 2. A man who see his family killed attempts to commit suicide. He then discovers he can identify people who are about to die.

Jason X

Todd Farmer, who helped on the script, also helped with Jason X. Jason Voorhees returns with a new look, a new machete, and his same murderous attitude as he is awakened on a spaceship in the 25th century.

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