I love head wounds, so it was pretty much a given that I would enjoy a movie about a guy who kills people with a pick axe. I also enjoy Jensen Ackles, which is why it is kind of odd that the 2009 remake of My Bloody Valentine has been sitting in my Netflix DVD queue for so long. However, seeing as how it is Valentine's Day, and this is Geektress, it was the perfect time to check it out.
The basic plot of the movie is that this is a cave in at a Pennsylvania coal mine, accidentally caused by Jensen Ackles' character Tom Hanniger, in which six miners are trapped. One of those miners, Harry Warden, killed the other miners to preserve air, then goes into a coma (I wasn't really clear on how). A year later to the day, he wakes up from that coma and goes on a huge killing spree, as one does. He supposedly dies in another cave in while the police try to apprehend him. Ten years later, when Tom returns to the Pennsylvania mining community from which he came, someone dressed like Harry Warden in his cool mining outfit and mask has started killing people again. Hijinx, and a lot of blood splatter, ensue.
What follows is a somewhat spoilery review and a very NSFW video. You are warned.
Soon after starting the DVD, I started to think I chose the wrong version of "My Bloody Valentine," because the trailer for the 1981 original looked awesome (and it is streaming on Netflix). Fortunately, four minutes into this movie I knew I wouldn't be disappointed when there were dismembered bodies everywhere. Then the sheriff looks at a disemboweled woman and says "Happy fucking Valentine's Day." Combine that with the fact that our killer needs absolutely no adjustment from coma to mass murder, and it's a pretty awesome opener.
Plenty of other awesome things happen too. I'm a big one for complaining about how defanged modern horror movies are, and I have no idea how it compares to the original, but this movie is pretty brutal. Also, it has a naked chick. Actually, the naked chick is probably the most interesting female character in the movie. Of course, she must die for the crime of being slutty, following official horror movie rules. I really enjoyed all the deaths though (the first one in this NSFW video being my absolute favorite). The movie was originally released in 3D, and while I didn't believe I was missing too much by watching it in regular 2D, I imagine seeing an old guy's lower jaw fly out at you in 3D must have been pretty epic.
Of course, as with any horror movie, this one is filled with plenty of stupid. There's one scene, with two women being chased down in a supermarket, where I thought they were reasonably intelligent for a little while, until one of them pulled an alarm and I was left wondering why they didn't do that much earlier. Like I said though, it's a horror movie. Stupid is to be expected. Intelligent people just don't get themselves hacked up by slashers. Also, I figured out the ending pretty early on in the movie. I have a bad habit of doing this though, so it may very well be that I've just seen too many movies, and not a real fault of the movie. I will say this though, cutting out hearts and putting them in candy boxes is appropriate for Valentine's Day, but really melodramatic for a guy whose motivation is a mine collapse.
Overall, this was a pretty solid horror movie. It certainly was much more watchable that Jensen Ackles' last foray into horror. (If you haven't seen Devour, and you recently framed someone for a horrible crime and feel the need to punish yourself, it's streaming on Netflix.) It's also way more entertaining than his costar, Jared Padelecki's, horror classic remake House of Wax, which couldn't even wring entertainment value out of killing Paris Hilton. (I haven't seen the Friday the 13th remake, also featuring J-Pads yet.) Basically, if you like pick axes to the head, this is the movie for you.