Regardless of your dork level, you’ll feel like a fool putting on green and red 3-D glasses in your living room. But, that’s part of what makes watching My Bloody Valentine 3D on DVD so much fun. To get the full effect, you really have to watch it with another person, so that when you look over at him/her you see that, yes, you both look like super-nerds. These are not the new-wave 3D glasses you got when you saw Monsters vs. Aliens, these are the old-school paper ones that, if bent the wrong way are rendered useless. They are, however, a throwback piece of flair that fit right in with the old-time B-movie feel of My Bloody Valentine 3D. Like its predecessors, My Bloody Valentine 3D is predictable and features bad acting strewn across a simple script, yet it does come with a few fresh upgrades. It does that without stooping to Saw-level violence.
As any good cheesy horror flick does, My Bloody Valentine 3D opens with a bloodbath. We learn from newspaper clippings played over the opening credits that Harry Warden (Richard John Walters) has just survived an accident in the mines of fictional mining town, Harmony. He may or may not have killed four men with a pick axe while he was trapped in the mines. We first see him when he wakes up from a coma in Harmony Hospital and instantly gets to murdering folk. The killer then makes his way to where the town’s teenagers have clustered for a party in the mines. This is where we meet Jaime King and Jensen Ackles, the clear winners in the group of actors populating My Bloody Valentine 3D. We get to see some teenagers murdered and our first glimpse of Harry Warden in his act-of-killing get-up. With his gas mask, mining gear and pick axe Warden is sure to garner a cult following and is certainly worthy of a mediocre franchise. Warden gets caught and the film cuts to ten years later when he resurfaces on the Valentine’s Day anniversary of his original killing spree.
When asked to think of 21st century horror flicks, you’re going to come up with something along the lines of the Saw or Hostel films. You’ll probably think of the new-school gritty antiqued look that screams bacteria infection, and the over the top bloody mess of decapitations and torture that populate these films. My Bloody Valentine 3-D thwarts the new aesthetics and themes in favor of tamer killing scenes, more three dimensional characters and way less torture. Yet, the film still has a very 21st century feel to it. When Warden returns, the first person on the agenda to kill is the slutty Irene (Betsy Rue). She appears on screen nude and mid-coitus with a married man. She is clearly a throwback to the slutty blonde that is always the first to be killed in older horror movies. Yet, rather than just running around with a wet t-shirt, showing her tatas, like she would have in the 80’s, Irene tries to escape her killer buck naked. She runs from Warden in heels and nothing else. It’s all very modern. This is an example of just one of the hilarious new twists that My Bloody Valentine 3D uses to make the horror genre look fresh again.
The most refreshing of the new twists being, of course, the fact that the film is presented in 3D. Don’t even bother watching My Bloody Valentine in 2D; all of the genuine thrills of the movie come from the awesomely bad ways the crew comes up with to abuse the third dimension. The pick axe comes at you numerous times, a sure-fire way to startle anyone with a big enough television. At one point, the pick axe launches an eyeball right into your face. Another time, a bloody jaw gets wrenched off and flies towards the camera and into your memory forever. These moments are clever, funny and gross all wrapped in one. Yes the thrills are somewhat cheap and certainly cheesy, but they are still thrills, all the same.
If you can get past the way the screen twinkles in red and green (due to the afore-mentioned glasses), the occasional double vision and the unavoidable sense of motion sickness, chances are you’re going to enjoy My Bloody Valentine 3D. This film fits easily into the mold of bloody horror flick. This will surely lead to some calling it cliché. However, many will see that this is endearing and that the film is clearly an homage to B-movies of the past. The plot is nothing new, the actors nothing special, and the dialogue mundane but the pace is fast the technology cool and the bloody hearts abundant. For any old-school horror fan, this movie is a good fit and a super-fun ride.
Editor's Note: This is a review of the single-disc, 3D/2D flip version release of My Blood Valentine 3D. It's also available in a 2-Disc, Special Edition and if you're looking for extra features, that may be the one you want.
My Bloody Valentine 3D is light on extras. A making-of featurette about all of the murder sections of the film would have been great, and deleted scenes are always fun. Unfortunately, all we're given is audio commentary with director Patrick Lussier and co-writer Todd Farmer along with the theatrical trailer. The disc is a flipper, with the 2D version of the film on the flip-side, but that isn’t exactly desirable because the 2D version is surely not worth watching.
The theatrical trailer really does not do the throw-back nature of the film justice. It is really just a generic preview of many of the kill scenes complete with the generic movie announcer guy doing voice over. After re-watching the trailer, I can really see why I had no interest in seeing the movie in theaters.
One can really grasp just how much fun the crew had making the film by listening to Lussier and Farmer’s audio commentary. They are obviously aware of the film’s vintage feel and wanted to uphold that throughout the film, but clearly weren’t taking anything too seriously. Lussier does use the phrase “Twin Peaksian,” which I’m pretty sure he invented, when describing a scene that takes place in a motel. I’m not sure that Twin Peaks should be said in the same sentence as My Bloody Valenting 3D, and he probably should have said “Lynchian,” instead, but I appreciate the thought. Plus, that explains why the main character’s last name is “Palmer.” The most intriguing part of the commentary was the scene in which the girl gets slayed in the nude, as Farmer actually plays the married man that Irene is boinking. He brings an interesting/creepy perspective to the scene. All in all, the commentary was pretty fun to listen to, but doesn’t exactly stand alone very well as a special feature. This disc should have been crazy packed with special features. I guess you’ve got to drop a little bit more cash for the special edition DVD if you want real extras.