My Bloody Valentine (1981) - Special Edition
|Lions Gate || R - 90 minutes - $19.98 || January 13, 2009|
|Reviewer: Brad Lowenberg || Posted On: 2009-01-15|
Writer(s): Stephen A. Miller (story), John Beaird (written by)
Cast: Paul Kelman, Lori Hallier, Neil Affleck, Keith Knight, Alf Humphreys
Theatrical Release Date: February 11, 1981
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My Bloody Valentine came out right when slasher films had started to catch on - a few years after Halloween and less than a year after Friday the 13th (which makes sense - Friday was a box office hit). There was a ton of slasher films planned and it seemed like every holiday was taken - except Valentine’s Day. So the story was born and My Bloody Valentine became a cult classic.
Twenty years ago, two absent minded supervisors for the local mines decided not to check the methane gas levels because they were so eager to go to the small towns Valentine’s Day party. As you might image, a huge explosion occurred trapping several of the miners under rock. It took weeks for the town to dig them out, and when they did, they found one survivor - Harry Warden - who was feasting on the remains of his fallen workers. Harry was sent to a mental hospital only return to the little town of Valentines Bluff a year later, killing the two supervisors who neglected them a year before. In his leave, he made sure to let the town know never to throw a Valentine’s Day party again...otherwise he would be back for vengeance.
And what do you think happened next? The town thought it was ready for another Valentine’s Day party! Yep, they didn't listen to the warnings and assumed everything would be fine. As the festivities begin, members of the local town slowly get picked off one by one with their hearts left for the Sheriff to fine. After the party is canceled, a group of young adults decide to movie it elsewhere - obviously picking the best place they could find - the local mines!
Like any other slasher film, you get a huge cast of generic characters you really don't care for. There is no sense actually naming them, because the be honest, I had a hard time remember their names because so many of them looked the same. For many this was there first "serious" acting gig and they do a decent job portraying absent-minded characters who think having a party in the local mine is a good thing.
Fans will be overjoyed that Lionsgate (and Paramount) heard their screams - for the first time, the film is presented in its true, horrific extended cut. Before, deaths were often cut off, leaving you with your imagination to fill in the blanks. Here, with rough footage, we finally get to see some of the amazing deaths that have taken years to get put back into the film.
Overall the film is a success in the slasher genre. Deaths are pretty unique (Happy's being the best) which include shoving a girl through a shower head, boiling a kids head in a pot of boiling hot dogs and the classic pick ax through the stomach. It does everything right in the slasher genre and deserves a watch.
This release includes a nice shiny slip cover.
Bloodlust: My Bloody Valentine (21 Minutes) - This is basically the Making Of which goes into how the film was thought up when all the other slasher films will coming out, filming locations, special effects and some discussions with the cast and crew. Halfway through it becomes a fluff piece for the 3D "remake" with some scenes as well as a very enthusiastic Kerr Smith. I got to say, all the women from the original film look really good thirty years later.
Bloodlines: Interactive Horror Film History - A click and go feature where you get to select different genres of horror and read a few paragraphs on them. Newbie horror film will love it; seasoned vets will find it boring.
Deleted Footage with Commentary (15 Minutes) - Now, these are all the 'just found' scenes that have been re-Incorporated back into the film for the 'Extended' cut. If you watched them already, it’s still worth a re-watch for some information on why they were cut.
Shame, they managed to get a handful of the original cast, director, writers, and special effects together for the new features... yet no commentary?
.::AUDIO & VIDEO::.
My Bloody Valentine is presented in 1.78:1 (16x9). Well, as I mentioned in my review, the quality varies depending which version you watch. The original, theatrical version is miles ahead from the previous Paramount DVD release from years ago. Colors are more in tune, less grain, and blacks look a hell of a lot better. The Extended Cut is the same quality, except where the additional gore/death scenes have been re-inserted. Now, this is not a bad thing - a lot of work was done to make the additional 4 (or so) minutes look good, but obviously they will never look as good as the Theatrical. They are often filled with dirt, grain, marks hair etc. You will know when you are watching an additional scene. Overall, Lionsgate did a fantastic job with a title that is nearly 30 years old.
Lionsgate has included an English Dolby Digital 5.1 track (along with English and Spanish subtitles). For a film as old as this, I will give them some slack. The film is very dialog heavy, with the exception of some noises in the mine. The mix obviously is heavily center to the front speakers, while rears remain fairly inactive.
My Bloody Valentine is often regarded as a cult classic that should have gone on the release sequel after sequel like its brothers Friday the 13th, A Nightmare on Elm Street, etc. However, with a poor box office it didn't.. .but don't let that get you down. This film is just as good as any of those and with this release by Lionsgate you are going to see some incredibly brutal deaths.