Valentine (2001)
Main cast: David Boreanaz (Adam Carr), Denise Richards (Paige Prescott), Marley Shelton (Kate Davies), Jessica Capshaw (Dorothy Wheeler), Jessica Cauffiel (Lily Voight), Katherine Heigl (Shelley Fisher), Daniel Cosgrove (Campbell Morris), and Fulvio Cecere (Detective Vaughn)
Director: Jamie Blanks


This is another one of those slasher movies that defy all laws of physics. You know, where we have our heroine dashing around a cavernous hallway, slamming doors behind her, running up the stairs in leaps of three per jump, et cetera, while our masked killer takes his time strolling. Then she jumps on a corner after dashing up two hundred floors and watch out! He's in front of her! How did he get up here so fast? That sort of nonsense.

In Valentine, however, we also have Denise Richards in her black bikini screaming as a masked killer tries to stab her with an electric drill. Whatever you may say, this movie has the arouse/thrill the cult slashy movie audience formula down pat.

The story is about five friends who are being stalked and killed one by one by a masked killer who may be the loser they treated like smelly stuff back in high school. There's Paige, the sexy one. Dorothy, the big and fat one (her own words, not mine). Meet Kate, the popular and sweet one (obviously the heroine here). There's also Lily, the fun kooky one (re: artistic type). Finally, we have Shelley, the brainy one, who is the first to be killed in the opening few minutes.

Then we have the usual suspects, mainly Adam, Kate's on-and-off may-or-may-not-have-stopped alcoholic boyfriend who wants to be back in her life. Is he the one?

Despite having a slasher that seems to be able to move through doors and walls at the speed of light (how else could one explain how he places a rose in a pretty spacy jacuzzi room without Paige noticing him in one scene?), Valentine is pretty entertaining in a bad way. But still, I do feel cheated for paying premium ticket price for this instead of waiting for it on video. The movie pulls out all the expected plot twists, including women who hit the baddie with a baseball bat, then drop the bat, and start running into narrow, dark hallways so that she can be cornered without any weapons and then cut open silly. Fun.

Of the main female cast, only Paige, played by Denise Richards as if she knows the punchline, is memorable as the savvy, ultraconfident girl who isn't ashamed or afraid to give out. Kate is her foil as the sweet, unpromiscuous girl who waits for the right guy. Guess who dies. Lily doesn't register, she, er, gets out of the limelight soon enough. Dorothy may be fat and has no self-esteem but she comes off so whiny and irritating and stupid that I feel cheated when they didn't do a gruesome autopsy on her. Oh yeah, these women are, on a whole, rather dim-witted creatures who, even when they know they are being tracked down and cut down, would bicker and spat and then walk off to sulk alone.

But towards the last twenty minutes, the movie suddenly becomes a delicious tale of twisted love and obsession. I can't say much without spoiling the movie, but I will say that I finally woke up and paid attention to this movie then. Nose bleed is never so sexy, not when it comes with such obsessive declaration of love and dark desires. Ooh, this twisted broad likes, she really likes it a lot.

But not enough to give this silly, dull story the passing grade.

Rating: 48


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