Reviewed by Andy Bowers
Rating: 4.5 Beans
knew a guy in grade school where instead of giving him Valentines, kids would pitch their hard plastic Jabber-Jaw and/or Snorks lunch boxes at his head after class (exceptionally cruel considering plastic on a cold February day has the density of a brick).
If I was a nerdy dweeb who got “Carrie”d on all the freakin’ time at school, it’d probably be just a matter of time before I grew up to be a serial killer or owner of Microsoft.
In Valentine, a lot of pretty, yet very low wattage twenty-somethings have their lights turned off permanently in many gruesome and surprisingly enjoyable ways. It’s a holiday themed “Scream” of sorts, where a mysterious cherub masked hack and slasher from the past comes back to exact revenge on those who tortured him/her as an adolescent freak. Not exactly a milestone in originality. Paybacks a bitch and as have it, so are most of the lead characters in this uninspired stalker flick.
Not since “The In Crowd” have I salivated so heavily in anticipation for a good on screen cat-fight with torn shirts and pulled hair. Sadly, I was grossly disappointed when things got about as catty as a dog show. More importantly we get Denise Richards (her of the champagne three-some in Wild Things) as a rich-bitch who enjoys dirty dancing with sweaty strangers, pouring hot wax on guys who have just pitched a tent, sans the tent and hot tub in her bikini at any given chance she gets (Warning – this film is rated PG-13 –so don’t expect Denise au natural).
Making his big screen debut is David Boreanz (Angel on TV’s Angel) as an enigmatic alcoholic ex-boyfriend (no need to push ladies – the line forms here) showing that perhaps he may have already been pigeon holed into a certain genre already (That’s not a bad thing, as long as he doesn’t end up doing tripe like his Buffy cohort Sarah Michelle Gellar – Simply Irresistible?).
Valentine, while no great achievement in the stalker genre, shows a bit of wit in dialogue and a certain panache for giving us a group of expendable supporting characters that are much better than the 90210 Barbie dolls who get top billing. But bottom line – this film exudes a true spirit of evil, bitterness and epic one liners… not from the killer him/herself – but from the intended victims.
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