Massawyrm takes a pickaxe to MY BLOODY VALENTINE 3-D!!
Hola all. Massawyrm here.
Horror goes through phases – it always has. Being a relatively cheap and easy genre to produce (but not necessarily to get right), there’s always enough money in the studio coffers to earmark for making whatever the current trend is. A few years ago it was remakes of foreign films. A few years before that it was about knocking off the Wes Craven/Kevin Williamson Scream look and feel. Right now it is all about the remakes. And while I hold no grudge against remakes as they are, like any phase you have really good examples of the movement, and then you have the ones that kill it.
My Bloody Valentine finds itself squarely in the kill it category.
I certainly understand why someone might want to update or even remake the original MBV – there’s a lot to love about that low budget, splatter fave. The ominous Miner killer, the lovable group of authentic feeling salt of the earth blue collar types and the great character story between two good friends (who really FEEL like good friends) fighting over the same gal – a gal they both seem to genuinely be in love with. But everything that works in the original is manhandled here. The film seems less about telling a great, mythic, slasher story and more about putting gore and nudity into 3-D. Not that there’s anything wrong with that sort of endeavor – but when a good story suffers at the hands of special effects…
And that’s exactly what happens here. There’s TONS wrong with this film. It is a frustrating, sigh inducing, cheap labor that takes short cut after short cut in order to put as much blood on the screen as it can…without ever really earning the fear and mood that should come with this level of ultra violence. The first major sin of the film is that when they sat down to reinvent it, someone on the creative team clearly said “Hey, you know I’m digging on this movie, but why does the killer keep using boiling water and shower heads and ropes to kill these kids when he’s got a perfectly good pickaxe in his hand? WE should make a film in which ALL of the deaths happen with the pickaxe. Otherwise, why is he carrying it?”
And the result of that conversation is a complete lack of ingenuity in the kills. A good slasher movie has two things going for it in the kill category. The first is that the deaths never get repetitive. The second is that each one is more dastardly, more sinister and more mind shatteringly fucked up than the one before it. We need to believe, especially at this point in our cinematic sophistication, that not only is this maniac so warped that s/he desires to kill LOTS of people, but that their mind is so fractured that they delight in creatively killing us or cleverly displaying our corpses when he’s done. But MBV’s Harry Warden just wants to kill. With his pickaxe. A lot. The film operates upon the premise that you will be so awed by the 3-D effects during the killings that it won’t matter that you’ve just watched the same death for a 20th time. While some might argue that “No, it’s different. This time when he got the pick through his head an eye came out. That’s TOTALLY different from the time that guy got a pick through the head and his jaw came off.”
No. It’s not.
The second great sin of this film is that they make the fatal mistake dealing with the law of diminishing returns. The film opens with a historical look at the origin of Harry Warden. Then we show up at what is the climax of the original – the party in the mine. Mind you, this is the first 3 minutes of the movie. Then we show up at a hospital where they’re treating and restraining Harry Warden…only to discover he’s killed EVERYONE there. 2 dozen bloody, gutted corpses are strewn about. They never show us the killings and it feels like an almost supernatural level of gore. It doesn’t FEEL like anything…but silly. THEN, we get a shortened sequence of the third act of the original – complete with just about as high a body count.
So now we’ve seen this guy kill half a party and discovered that he’s killed everyone in a hospital. And we’re supposed to be impressed when he kills a teen girl or an old man on his porch?
The third and final sin of the film is that they cheat. The film delivers an ending that just plain cheats in the worst way possible – one of those endings in which they have to go back and show you what REALLY happened earlier in the film because they were lying to you the first time so you wouldn’t guess who the killer is. When they finally get around to taking the mask off, the revelation is not only unsatisfying, but truly obnoxious. I would have figured by now that most film makers out there would know not to try to cheat an audience like this. BUT no. There are still folks out there who think they can shock us with such a cheap and easy trick.
No, this film has one thing and one thing only going for it. 3-D. But that wasn’t enough for me. Blood flying at the screen and a 3-D naked women running around for 4 minutes could not make this worth enduring the lame character development and the inability to create a real, authentic feeling mythology. While the film isn’t entirely sparse (there are a few good kills with the pick and a pair of moments that really are interesting turns on the original) it is not a film good enough to EVER warrant seeing outside of the 3-D. This film is all about the gimmick, and lacking the gimmick it is a relatively soulless horror film that shows off the very worst of what horror remakes can be.
Now keep in mind that this isn’t the angry voice of nostalgia talking. Until recently I held no special place in my heart for the original. I saw it when I was 13 in the midst of a slasher film binge and was unimpressed. The original, you see, had been gutted during a short lived reaction against ultra-violence after the death of John Lennon. With most of the truly great special effects removed from the film (effects by the team that would immediately follow the film up with a relative unknown sci-fi horror film, The Thing) it lacks the gore to compliment the strong story – something I didn’t fully appreciate as a 13 year old. But if there’s any good that’s come of this film, it is that they’ve rereleased the DVD with all the good stuff cut back in. And it really holds up.
It holds up so well that watching it after the remake I realized that there wasn’t a single thing the remake did better, outside of the addition of 3-D. The cast was prettier but didn’t feel as real. The murders weren’t half as inventive as the original. Hell, the original is loaded with tons of brilliant foreshadowing – much of which you don’t realize until the deaths of each of the folks involved. The mythology of the original is better. The character development is far richer. And even though the ending of the original cheats a little as well – it is far more forgivable a cheat than the remake, mostly because the original never lies to you.
I think Lionsgate is out of their mind for showing this on so much as a single screen sans the 3-D. There is zero reason to watch this without body parts flying at you or 4 foot wide 3-D quim. It’s just another lame, dead on arrival roller coaster ride that has the benefit of being the first of its kind for this generation. Once the dust settles and we have several more entries into the 3-D cinema world, this will go down as just another terrible horror film that seemed really cool until Coraline or Avatar came out. If you see this, do the 3-D. Otherwise you’re just cheating yourself out of ten bucks and two hours.
Until next time friends, smoke ‘em if ya got ‘em.
Got something for the Wyrm? Mail it here.
Readers Talkbackcomments powered by Disqus
+ Expand All
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:23 a.m. CST
by wampa 1
...but it sure smells good!
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:30 a.m. CST
I was skeptical of those BNAT reviews. This sounds more like what I expected - crap. I swear I'm jealous every year that I don't get to go to BNAT, but the reviews that come out of it tend to be waaaaaay generous. In that atmosphere, sure a 3D piece of crap would be fun. But in a real theater where you just paid real money? Not so much...
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:33 a.m. CST
by Bill Brasky
Here's to Bill Brasky!
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:34 a.m. CST
That movie feels like it was made by first-year film school fuck-ups.
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:36 a.m. CST
I know it's the middle of January, but it seems like I've been locked out of the theater. And I live in a town with TWO Angelika's! I've been up for a movie for a week now, and nothing's any good. And I'm NOT seeing Last Chance Harvey. And what's next week? Donkey Punch? Inkheart? Fuck. I'll have to see fuckin' Inkheart...
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:40 a.m. CST
Well, we've all been there....
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:45 a.m. CST
by Shepard Wong
If you are at all interested in seeing it, you have to see it in 3D at the theater. Am I a little disapointed that this likely won't be as good as I hoped, sure. Am I going to go see it anyway, yup. Blood and boobs in 3D. I'm there.
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:47 a.m. CST
3-D naked women walking around for four minutes. My local theater doesn't have this in 3-D so I have to drive 90 minutes to see this in 3-D. I don't care. A man will do a lot for 3-D boobies.
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:53 a.m. CST
At least they don't use the word "quim".
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:55 a.m. CST
Or am I a better person for not knowing?
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:59 a.m. CST
But I can't see paying 10 bucks to see it.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:02 a.m. CST
The first time that head explodes... remarkable.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:03 a.m. CST
Joe Bob Briggs was still reviewing movies. I can hear it now. 26 dead bodies. Pick Axe to the Head. Pick Axe to the Jaw. 4 breasts, but since they're in 3-D they count three times as much. Kung Fu. Miner Cap Fu. Pick Axe Fu. Four Stars!
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:09 a.m. CST
by Saint Andeol
euphamism for lady parts. Second is cunny. Third is roast beef sandwich. Also, this movie looks lame.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:11 a.m. CST
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:11 a.m. CST
How about Intruder? It put me off working nights in a supermarket for good. Oh and Kirbymanly, a Quim is better known as a minge, beef curtains or 'ladygarden'.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:12 a.m. CST
Also, 'nuff said.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:14 a.m. CST
by Baron Karza
They are better than that..
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:25 a.m. CST
by The Reluctant Austinite
Massawyrm is a cool guy. I bump into him every time I'm in Texas, and wish I'd had more time to jabber about film with him, but this time his review is a little on the grumpy side. Outside the Alamo last month he expressed his loathing of this film. This movie isn't pretending to be anything other than what it is; a William Castle styled 3-D gimmick. This is a guy who also HATED "The Mist," one of my favorite horror films last year, so it's likely we wouldn't see eye-to-eye in this genre. And what kind of horror fan writes a review of a horror film starring Tom Atkins and fails to even mention that Tom Atkins is in it? Horror fans, like myself, can be forgiving of much when the film-maker takes the gloves off and delivers pure exploitation, and that's what you get here. It's not rocket science. So decide for yourself if that sounds like your idea of a good time.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:30 a.m. CST
Thank god someone has some fucking taste on this website! Better than that fuck-off Capone! Who says this film is sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo-great! Like i said anyone who would find this movie in any shape or form good, is a loser! That eats shit for lunch and dinner!
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:31 a.m. CST
I'll definitely see this. I am 3D-Man, after all.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:34 a.m. CST
Supposedly she gave a pile of notes to the director on how to make the script better. Apparently she thought they were making Citizen Kane or something.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:42 a.m. CST
"Let me get naked in this. And then, let me do a lesbian scene with Megan Boone. Please?"
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST
End of story.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:47 a.m. CST
at the end of the commercial that says "It's kind of kinky in a sick kind of way"? She looks like a fucking skank, her voice is grating and the dialogue is for shit.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:48 a.m. CST
It is same horny teenage audience that the original '80s slasher flicks were designed for. To seperate the "young-dum-and-filled-with-cum" with their weekly allowance, and get a chance to have BettyLou shriek and grab your arm, and maybe later on after a doobie on the way home...<p>I'll agree with the poster that said this is review proof.
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:55 a.m. CST
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:55 a.m. CST
Sure, you're just trolling, but - I'll feed the troll: The Thing (1982) The Fly (1986) Traffic (2000) There ARE too many remakes coming out right now, but - remakes CAN
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:56 a.m. CST
CAN be good. They're just MOSTLY crap.
Jan. 13, 2009, 12:09 p.m. CST
Any time I read a review by Mass, who whorships at the alter of Seagal, I always try and consider his taste. I mean, you always do when you read a reviewer regularly. I wasn't surprised he didn't like this, he wants Seagal to step in with his chub, and his geetar and shoot some people while sliding on oil, or spinning around on unicycle with Uzi's. Then he'd fuckin' love it!
Jan. 13, 2009, 12:16 p.m. CST
As far as arguments go, man. I kept thinking "I want to see that" "Hey, sounds like fun" and "I sure shit want to see THAT!". Yup, 3D, blood, guts and T&A does it for me.
Jan. 13, 2009, 12:19 p.m. CST
Thanks Tyler, I have an old book of reviews from the good 'ol boy. Haven't thought of him in a while.
Jan. 13, 2009, 12:20 p.m. CST
by dr sauch
Jan. 13, 2009, 12:47 p.m. CST
anyone remember Friday The 13th Part 3 in 3-D?
Jan. 13, 2009, 1:02 p.m. CST
by Some Dude
The movie rules. It is junk-food horror, but it is done well.
Jan. 13, 2009, 1:04 p.m. CST
do we know if the whole movie is in 3d or just a few scenes the way superman returns was?
Jan. 13, 2009, 1:09 p.m. CST
Gee, Mass, how do you really feel? Sorry to burst your teen splatter-love bubble. Terrible review. I saw it at BNAT and enjoyed the hell out of it. Seemed most of the rest of the place did, too.
Jan. 13, 2009, 1:13 p.m. CST
Jan. 13, 2009, 1:17 p.m. CST
No, a queef (or quiff) is a pussyfart. A quim is a vagina.
Jan. 13, 2009, 1:22 p.m. CST
It's been around since at least the 19th century. <br><br>1922, James Joyce, Ulysses, page 938:<br><br> "Ho! What do I here behold? Were you brushing the cobwebs off a few quims?" <br><br>Although I would have though the plural of quim is quim.
Jan. 13, 2009, 1:41 p.m. CST
I think you have this delusion in your mind that you'll walk in the theater, watch 4 minutes of boobs and walk out again. Don't forget that these 4 minutes have got many many more minutes of vapid stupidity stuck on each end. If you want 3D boobs, go to a strip club.
Jan. 13, 2009, 2 p.m. CST
I was at the premier, and I will say pretty much ever complaint Massa had, I did as well. In fact, I think I had a couple of more complaints to add. <p> One of my biggest problems with it was if you are going to go take the cheesy, let's-not-take-this-serious-route, than go all out. I mean, yes they had a girl run around naked for 4 minutes but even that felt like a missed opportunity. And on top of that, her character was the only one who had any character. Once you killed her, there was no one, and I mean no one, worth following around. Not even Jamie King or the great Tom Atkins (well Mr. Atkins has a couple of moments). <p> On the positive side I did meet Tom Atkins at the Premier. Real nice guy. And even if the movie isn't that good it is nice to see him working.
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:07 p.m. CST
Noun <p> quim (plural quims)<p> (vulgar) The vagina.<p> 1879, Anonymous, "The Wanton Lass" in The Pearl No. 1: <p> For one day, when amusing herself with this whim, / The carrot it snapped, and part stuck in her quim. <p> 1922, James Joyce, Ulysses, page 938<p>: Ho! What do I here behold? Were you brushing the cobwebs off a few quims? <p> 2005, Margaret Carter, Maiden Flights, page 131: <p> Her quim grew wet, ready to welcome it.
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:07 p.m. CST
by Massawyrm 1
I think you have me confused with VERN. He's the guy that likes Seagal.
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:18 p.m. CST
by Rickey Henderson
True story. How the fuck did we land on this subject?
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:29 p.m. CST
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:29 p.m. CST
by Frank Black
Mark, my words and it will also be #1 due to the 6 people I am seeing it with. Every other early review has noted how much fun it is, and I haven't had fun at the movies in awhile. America loves 3D and they love horror, and this has both and 3D nudity! It is a win, win, win!!!
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:36 p.m. CST
That would Raawwk!
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:40 p.m. CST
The whistling and laughing as he knows he can get away in the mine. Man that stuff really got to me.
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:45 p.m. CST
Even with fake boobs and better hair products, I doubt any of the girls are better looking than the original's Lori Hallier. She's still hot.
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:50 p.m. CST
..James Joyce's 'Ulysses' and cheapo 3D slasher film remakes. Now that's what I call an eclectic talkback!
Jan. 13, 2009, 2:52 p.m. CST
"It's Miller Time!"
Jan. 13, 2009, 3:16 p.m. CST
Sorry to say. At least I can say I want to see a severed head flying at me.
Jan. 13, 2009, 3:17 p.m. CST
Jan. 13, 2009, 3:37 p.m. CST
Fact: ALL generalizations suck. (See what I did there?)
Jan. 13, 2009, 3:40 p.m. CST
ITS A B MOVIE.....A B MOVIE!!! See not Th Wrestler or some other Oscar type film its a blood, guts, boobs flick...and in 3D it doesn't claim to be more. It ain't elves or trools or shit running around and geeks proclaim its all about some profound thing....its A HORROR flick. Umm I like story too but I know better than to pick apart a B movie for lack of story....I mean really? no story in a horror flick.....well fuck me sideways I can't believe it. I am a HORROR FAN....HARDCORE and I love the classics...Halloween (and I say just Halloween with no need to say the original cause what the hell else would I mean)....The Thing.....and The Exorcist. I know good and bad and sometimes bad can be fun and enjoyable. I would rather R rated so-so horror than PG-13 crap. Anyway look it may not be the greatest flick ever....but the 3D should make it fun and the gore and boobs should be fun....leave your brain at the door.
Jan. 13, 2009, 3:50 p.m. CST
Awesome name for a large-insertions adult flick, am I right? I will be seeing this movie... never seen a 3D horror movie, especially a really gory one. I've even got a quimholder who has expressed interest in seeing it... and hell, I watched Mirrors over the weekend and survived that!
Jan. 13, 2009, 3:53 p.m. CST
It's cool that these movies try to jump on the band wagon, but you actually need a story and have something to say. But 3D titties are nice.
Jan. 13, 2009, 3:54 p.m. CST
by Larry of Arabia
for 3D horror. My mom saw the original 13 Ghosts in 3D and said that, for the time, it was very effective. Castle had a genuinely unique way to use 3D technology in service of the film. Something akin to what they did there instead of yet another body part flying at you through the screen.
Jan. 13, 2009, 4:01 p.m. CST
Jan. 13, 2009, 4:02 p.m. CST
Jan. 13, 2009, 4:07 p.m. CST
So all of our favourite movies no matter how shite end up getting a positive review with full of excuses. Then there will be no angry TBers left. We all just give each other bj's and pretend to be one big family who "gets it".
Jan. 13, 2009, 4:23 p.m. CST
by rhett beavers
He was born to review this.
Jan. 13, 2009, 5:04 p.m. CST
"My local theater doesn't have this in 3-D so I have to drive 90 minutes to see this in 3-D. I don't care. A man will do a lot for 3-D boobies." yes, most men would spend 90 minutes talking to a REAL girl to try and see her REAL 3D boobs. But, if driving to a theatre is easier for you to do.. good on ya.
Jan. 13, 2009, 6:07 p.m. CST
paying for a hooker and practicing your craft so as to be ready for the true fucking...we all know Avatar is our one and only eyeball fucking significant other...but we don't want our eyeballs to let Avatar down...so we have to ease into it with 3D grue and minge...and I for one, welcome our new, naked, 3D overlords...
Jan. 13, 2009, 6:14 p.m. CST
Thanks To His Late night screening of the B-Horror Claasic Evil Toons I Discoverd The Wonderful World Of Masturbation Awe Memories.this movie will be a fun escape i know i'll enjoy it
Jan. 13, 2009, 6:17 p.m. CST
are the ones Carpenter did: The Thing and Village of the Damned
Jan. 13, 2009, 6:25 p.m. CST
Stick, Knife... Knife, um Knife, Spork, Sheer Strenght, Drowning and TV (it's getting better can't wait to see what he does next) Knife!?!?! Knife!?!? Knife, Knife again, really .. Oh shit he just redid the Bob stuck to a wall scene from H1 and it looks dumber than it did the first time I saw and didn't believe it. Knife again!!! Fuck off with the Knife already.. Damn this boring!
Jan. 13, 2009, 6:38 p.m. CST
seriously, why do Lucas and Speilberg get all the hate? what Zombie did to Halloween is worse.
Jan. 13, 2009, 7:14 p.m. CST
by dead youngling
Sam'll be sad and pissed. But I think Sam is in the new Fri 13th flick so he def. dies. Guess they have to cancel Supernatural now.
Jan. 13, 2009, 8:44 p.m. CST
by Red Dawn Don
Seeing MBV-3D Means You Are Not The Sharpest Spoon In The Draw. (I mean knife.) I never understood taking a girl to see a slasher-type movie where the girls having sex are getting killed. The girl NOT having sex survives. Talk about locking down the old clam/quim for the night. Makes no sense to me. Wait these guys dont have quim with them. Wonder why?
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:03 p.m. CST
Hasn't been a great 3D film yet. Bolt was just generic, lifeless modern Disney kid feed.
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:17 p.m. CST
After his negative review of Burn After Reading, I automatically know I'll have a good time with any film he pans.
Jan. 13, 2009, 10:23 p.m. CST
That says it all
Jan. 13, 2009, 11:15 p.m. CST
...and I'm a guy who's spent the last 12 years showing stupid horror movies on the big screen in Philly (www.exhumedfilms.com), so I'll somewhat immodestly claim to be a horror connoisseur. And I enjoyed this film. Was it stupid, poorly acted, and predictable? You bet. Does it also feature nifty 3-D gimmicks, old-school non-CGI (mostly) gore setpieces, and Tom Fucking Atkins? Absolutely. It aint genius, but it's not like the original film was either, and though I have a very fond place for that film in my...ahem...heart (and screened Valentine's weekend a year or two ago), I think this film could pretty much stand next to the first MBV. Which isn't saying much, necessarily, but I'm a sucker for any 3-D horror--from F13 3-D to Robot Monster. If that sounds like you, you'll probably enjoy the film. All this being said, I wouldn't recommend seeing the film without the 3-D. I think if I saw a flat print of MY BLOODY VALENTINE, I wouldn't have enjoyed it much at all. So take that for what it's worth...which probably isn't much.
Jan. 14, 2009, 1:29 a.m. CST
by alice 13
Jan. 14, 2009, 3:45 a.m. CST
Atkins Mutherfuckers!!!! It's gold already!!! <P> Thrill Me....
Jan. 14, 2009, 10:49 a.m. CST
Maybe I should have stated that my wife is going with me too. She wants to see 3-D boobies as much as I do. On our second date, we watched Burial Ground together and the scene where Peter Bark bit his mom's tit off, she loved every second of it.