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My Bloody Valentine (2009)

My Bloody Valentine 3D

He's gonna break your heart.

Directed by:

Patrick Lussier

Rating: 5/10

Running Time: 101 minutes

US Certificate: R UK Certificate: 18

Country: United States

When I was a little horror fan, I remember watching something like Creature from the Black Lagoon on TV with 3D glasses you could get for free in the newspaper. I always got a headache because I got tired of wearing the 3D glasses over my own prescription pair so I’d try and watch the screen straight on, but the red and blue squigglies were hard on the eyes. All these years later, 3D is making a comeback, with movie thinkers thinking they need to compete with Blu-ray and downloads and Netflix by making stuff fly out at us. My Bloody Valentine is one of the first steps in this bold new/old direction, and though the film itself is pretty mediocre, the 3D is actually kinda fun and much improved.

Crazy miner turned killer Harry Warden bloodied his way through 22 men, women, and children, only to be shot, buried, and presumed dead. Now, ten years later, he appears to have returned to terrorize the town of Harmony, starting with the group of teens he was last toying with a decade earlier. Things are different now, though—one of them, Axel Palmer, (Kerr Smith) is the town sheriff, married to Sarah, another of the survivors (Jamie King). Also back in town is mine owner’s son Tom Hanniger (Jensen Ackles)—Axel’s former nemesis and Sarah’s former true love. With all that soap opera action going on, it’s little wonder that with every new kill, former victims begin to eye each other suspiciously when dead people hearts start turning up in candy boxes again.

There are things here that work—again the 3D stuff is done well, and even when it becomes obvious and you just KNOW they broke that glass to throw it in your lap, it still adds a thrill ride element to a typical slasher. There’s not really a high body count, if you don’t count the people from ten years previous, but the carnage we do see is plenty gory. The ending is actually more suspenseful than I expected, and it manages to surprise and leaves room for a sequel. The best thing, though, for any horror or B-movie aficionado, is the appearance of Tom Atkins as policeman Burke (Maniac Cop? Night of the Creeps?). Seeing him onscreen automatically added a star to my review. On the downside, Ackles is vastly too bland, even for a predictable horror movie, and the whole love triangle thing took up way too much time and slowed down the action. Also, as is customary, much of the killing seems routine (though I give props to Betsy Rue for not only surviving longer than most girls being chased with a pickaxe, but doing it totally nude and weaponless!); there’s almost a rhythm to it, and we always know exactly who’s about to get it next. All in all, it’s not really scary, but there’s some suspense, a little excitement, and even when I watched without the glasses, I didn’t get a headache.

It's Got: Tom Atkins, Decent 3D, More of a twist than I expected.

It Needs: Less marital angst, A few more interesting kills, To amp up the pace.

Alternatives:

Black Christmas, Halloween III

Summary

There’s nothing new here as far as slasher flicks go, but the 3D twist at least adds a bit more value to your movie ticket dollar.

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