©2009 Big Empire Industries and Randy Shandis Enterprises
Every right imaginable is reserved.


This week:
My Bloody Valentine 3D

Filthy says:
"Dr. Tongue would be pissed."

Occasionally, I get an e-mail from someone who complains that somewhere in the middle of my reviews I "spoil" a movie by giving away some surprise. I am going to be very careful in this review to not do that. The character Tom Hanniger, son of the coal mine owner, and responsible for an accident ten years before, is the serial killer. See? This time I did it right up front.

My Bloody Valentine 3D cost me $12.50 to see. That pretty much sucks, especially when the assholes at the theater want you to give the glasses back at the end of the show. I'd like to keep the glasses to wear to the library and to coffee shops and shit so I can be smart looking and understand what I'm reading better. And maybe some really cute girl will ask me to read Dune to her while she caresses my feet. A girl so cute that Mrs. Filthy says it's okay, I mean. Girls at coffee shops around here are always reading Dune.

Twelve and a half bucks doesn't cheese me off, really. It's nearly two-thirds of my weekly allowance, but I also found a case of expired, Chinese cough syrup behind the Family Dollar the other day. It's 47% alc by vol and has a refreshing, metallic aftertaste. I drank a bottle, fell asleep and dreamed I was fucking unicorns. And I liked it. When I woke up, I remembered the dream visibly, and thought I saw unicorns everywhere all day, so I kept getting boners. Man, that's seriously good shit. Plus, all my facial hair fell of after drinking it.

What pisses me off about paying that much for a mediocre movie is that a high price should be the barrier that keeps out annoying teenagers. I thought for sure when I handed over that much cash I would watch My Bloody Valentine 3D with Arvada's cultured, pipe-smoking, elbow-patched elite. They would chortle at the jokes and comment on the similarities between this movie and the digressions in Thomas Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow. Alas, the audience was the same giggly, annoying kids that are always at the movies on Friday nights. Where the fuck did they get that kind of bread? How come they can afford cell phones and I can't? Not that I want to talk to anybody; I have a phobia about phones. I'd like to play Tetris, though. Where were the city council and members of the Historical Society? Did I miss the twenty-dollar screening? If overpaying isn't going to elevate me to high society, how the hell am I gonna get in?

Without getting to hobnob with the mayor and the president of the junior college, My Bloody Valentine 3D sure as hell ain't worth $12.50. It's not worth regular prices for the 2D version, and it won't even be worth watching for free on TBS in a couple years. I will say, though, that's it's the first of this new breed of 3D movies that embraces the tacky, cornball potential of three dimensions. You see more dangerous shit flying at you than would a guy wearing a PETA shirt at a crossbow convention. There are picks, fiery explosions, tits, pans, guts, brooms and teenagers. It's not to the level of Dr. Tongue holding his western shirt to the camera in Midnight Cowboy 2 in 3D. Still, it's more than any of the other recent flicks who try pretend it's not just a gimmick.

Beyond 3D, My Bloody Valentine is generic. The movie Scream and its sequels must be far enough in the past now that moviemakers can once again use the hoary old tricks and plots of the seventies and eighties. The only difference between this flick and its predecessors is that now the irrational, indestructible killer is a coalminer who wears heavy coveralls and a breathing apparatus that makes him sound like either an obscene phone caller or a fat kid with asthma. Oh, and the backstory is as belabored as that same fat kid during PE.

Ten years ago on Valentine's Day, a cast of low-budget unknowns in a small town were terrorized by a coal mine accident. Young Tom Hanniger (Jensen Ackles), son of the mine owner, caused the accident that trapped a few miners. One of those, Harry Warden, killed the others and survived. In the hospital, he woke from a coma, returned to the mine to grab a pick, coveralls and gas mask, and killed a bunch more people before being shot dead... or was he? (Yes, he was.)

After ten years gone, Ackles returns to the small town. On Valentine's Day! His old girlfriend (Jaime King) has married his high school rival (Kerr Smith - a very, very poor man's David Arquette) who is also the local sheriff. Ackles is there to sell his father's mine and rekindle his old lovelight. If you know what I mean. I mean, wax his candle wick. Which means, put his wiener in his ex-girlfriend's vagina. Which means make babies. Shortly after Ackles gets to town, a gas-masked killer goes about throwing picks at movie cameras, and shattering glass at movie cameras, and having naked girls run toward movie cameras.

Yes, there is a shitload of nudity, kids, but all in one burst. During illicit Valentine's sex at a motel, a naked girl exposes her boobs. Then, while being chased around the parking lot and motel, she shows her pubic hair and her ass, too. A lot. She's okay looking. She's definitely not a major character, so you know she's gonna get a pick through the face. The sad part is, the two better looking girls in the movie don't show anything. Maybe they have starry dreams of someday being real actresses. At which point, they will flash their genitals to the world in stolen home videos.

Once it is established that the killer dresses like a coalminer, My Bloody Valentine is a repetitive series of gory murders with almost no reason to care who gets stabbed. An old guy gets his face shoved into it. Two girls get chased around a supermarket. An old guy gets a pick hooked under his jaw and then his face ripped off. Teenagers get hacked up and everyone's heart gets ripped out and stuffed in a box of chocolates. Ah, yes, it makes sense to me. Whenever I think of Valentine's Day, I think of coal mining. It's a natural fit. Certainly not a contrivance to give the movie a convenient title. The deaths are numerous, the blood flows as easily as it does for four days every month in the women's block of a state prison. The 3D at least gives you a few startles. The movie, though, is never scary.

The order that people are killed, and the reasons are nonsensical, in keeping with the tradition established by shitty movies of the eighties and nineties. The plot and motivations are ridiculous. This could easily be Death Spa or Death Hospital or Candy Bottoms' ill-fated genre-bender Death Butt Sex. We're supposed to wonder whether the killer is Ackles or Smith. I never did; I just hoped someone else would get naked. Is Hanniger an innocent, decent guy (no), or is he a just-out-of-the-institution lunatic hellbent on killing everyone (yes)? Is Smith a philandering-but-decent cop (yes), or is he a killer with virtually no valid reason to chop people up (no)? I have to say, anyone who really wants to be surprised by this ending needs to get a fucking life.

In keeping with tradition, when Ackles is thought to be dead at the end, he isn't. The End?

Maybe there is something reassuring about the old horror tropes being able to support an entire flick. Perhaps it's supposed to be comforting that everything about this movie is as familiar as the smell of your own farts. It wasn't for me. The horror movies of the eighties sucked corn, and there was a reason. They were derivative and formulaic. Time has not made the formula any better. Without a buttload of 3D gimmickry, My Bloody Valentine 3D is bland and tired. I didn't care about the characters, I didn't care about the plot.

It's a Two Finger flick. If you want to see it, see it in 3D. It's gonna suck in 2D at the movies or the TV.

Want to tell Filthy Something?



Jim Ferguson of ABC-TV

Yes Man is "The best comedy of the year! Hilarious from start to finish... say 'yes' to Yes Man!"!"

Filthy's Reading
Graham Greene - Travels with my Aunt

Listening to
Sebadoh - Bakesale


Pavement: Slow Century