Projections - Movie Reviews

Valentine Valentine

Pretty soon there won't be a holiday that hasn't been spoiled by having a slasher movie named after it.

As in the rest, a killer (this time disguised in a long black coat and a cherub mask) wields a large knife as he stalks unsuspecting young people.  The genre usually has a couple of things in common; the victims are generally beautiful, naive and when told to stay in groups and call the police, they wander off by themselves into dark places.

The only thing that sets this film apart from the rest, is that in most horror films the killer preys on young people having sex (they even joke about it in Scream), well, there isn't any sex going on in Valentine.

The film opens at a sixth grade school dance.  A skinny geek named Jeremy, asks pretty girls to dance and, one by one, they turn him down with a laugh or nasty remark.  He finally turns to an overweight girl sitting on the sidelines.  They dance and kiss a little, until class bullies beat him up for "attacking" the girl.

Flash forward, the girls have grown into beautiful, independent women who have remained friends.  Dorothy, the overweight one, has slimmed down but still feels inferior.  Kate (Marley Shelton - Sugar & Spice) has just broken up with her alcoholic boyfriend (David Boreanaz - TV's Angel) and Paige (Denise Richards) is the sexy one.

When one of their friends is killed and the girls start getting gruesome valentines, the police suspect Jeremy is out for revenge on his former classmates.  But since the women haven't seen him since grade school and the police think he might have had plastic surgery, the killer could almost be anyone in their crowd.

Richards is a lovely and sassy presence and Shelton, whom I've seen in two recent films, is an actress to watch.  Even so, the story is old stuff and most likely would appeal only to die-hard horror fans.

Rated R for language and violence.