Love Hurts: VALENTINE (2001) Review

On Valentine’s Day I watched “Valentine (2001)” for the first time. This movie is directed by Jamie Blanks (Urban Legend) and loosely based on the novel of the same name by Tom Savage. The cast includes Denise Richards (Starship Troopers), David Boreanaz (Bones), Marley Shelton (Planet Terror), Jessica Capshaw (Minority Report), Jessica Cauffiel (Legally Blonde) and Katherine Heigl (Grey’s Anatomy). I’ve had the DVD of this movie in my collection for a couple of years now. Valentine received a somewhat lukewarm reception from critics during its original release, but the horror community appears to be showing WAY more love for this holiday horror. I ended up leaning towards the latter spectre. Valentine is nothing but a fun, fast paced and entertaining horror movie. The deaths are creative and I absolutely loved the Cupid mask that the killer wears. The acting performances are varying from good to bad. My favorite characters in this movie were definitely Paige (Denise Richards), Lily (Jessica Cauffiel) and Dorothy (Jessica Capshaw). These actresses deserved much more screen time in my opinion.

I thought the opening scene with Katherine Heigl was superb and she did a fine job with her limited role. I enjoyed watching David Boreanaz in this movie, his performance was neutral at best though. Which brings me to my biggest issue I’ve had with this movie (and ironicly similar to Blanks’ superior Urban Legend): the final girl was shockingly miscast. I like Marley Shelton as an actress, but this particular role should’ve went to a different actress. She paled in comparison to her other female co-stars. Bland performance. I adored the star studded ensemble cast nonetheless. The soundtrack is brilliant and easily ranks as one of my favorite horror soundtracks. I’m still a little 50/50 on the plot twist at the end. So many red herrings were thrown our way altogether. That pay off should’ve lasted at least 10 minutes longer. Furthermore I liked the look of this movie in terms of style and cinematography. The script needed some enhancement in a handful of scenes. Valentine is still much better than average and totally worth a look!

–Ferdi Akkulak

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