Valentine (film)

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Valentine
Valentine film.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Jamie Blanks
Produced by Dylan Sellers
Written by
  • Gretchen J. Berg
  • Aaron Harberts
  • Donna Powers
Based on Valentine
by Tom Savage
Starring
Music by Don Davis
Cinematography Rick Bota
Edited by Steve Mirkovich
Production
companies
Distributed by
Release date
  • February 2, 2001 (2001-02-02)
Running time
96 minutes[2]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $10 million[3]
Box office $36.7 million[4]

Valentine is a 2001 American slasher film directed by Jamie Blanks, and starring David Boreanaz, Marley Shelton, Jessica Capshaw, Hedy Burress, Jessica Cauffiel, Katherine Heigl, and Denise Richards. The film is loosely based on the novel of the same name by Tom Savage.

Plot[edit]

At a junior high school dance in 1988, Jeremy Melton, an outcast student, asks four popular girls to dance. Three girls, Shelley, Lily and Paige reject him cruelly, while the fourth girl, Kate, politely turns down his offer. Their overweight friend Dorothy accepts Jeremy's invitation and they proceed to secretly make out underneath the bleachers. When a group of school bullies discover the pair, Dorothy claims that Jeremy sexually assaulted her, causing the boys to publicly strip and severely beat him up, and his nose starts bleeding under distress. Later in the film, Paige reveals Jeremy was sent to a reform school as punishment for his alleged "assault". They all talk about how horrible they were to him since they first met him.

Years later, Shelley (Katherine Heigl), a medical student at UCLA, is at the morgue. After receiving a vulgar Valentine's card and being pursued by a killer wearing the very same Cupid's mask that was worn at the 1988 junior high school dance, Shelley's throat is slit as she hides in a body bag. The killer's nose is seen to bleed as he performs the act. Her friends are questioned at her funeral, but nothing is concluded.

All the girls except Kate (Marley Shelton) and Paige (Denise Richards) receive cards in the same fashion as Shelley. Dorothy (Jessica Capshaw) who is now much thinner receives a card, which reads "Roses are red, Violets are blue, They'll need dental records to identify you". Her boyfriend, Campbell, loses his apartment and stays with her. Lily (Jessica Cauffiel) receives a box of chocolates and a card which says "You are what you eat". She then takes a bite of one of the chocolates, and vomits upon realizing that there are maggots inside the chocolates.

As the girls attend Lily's artist boyfriend Max's exhibit, they meet Campbell's bitter ex-girlfriend Ruthie who tells them off. Lily is isolated and confronted by the killer, who proceeds to shoot her repeatedly with arrows until she falls several floors into a dumpster. When they have not heard from Lily, the others assume she is out for LA on a work trip. Upon contacting the police, they agree that the culprit could be Jeremy Melton. Meanwhile, Kate's neighbor breaks into Kate's apartment to steal her underwear and is killed by the cupid killer with a hot iron pressed to his face and then bludgeoned with it.

As Valentine's Day approaches, Dorothy is planning a theme party at her house. Campbell is killed with an axe to the back by the "Cherub Cupid" killer the day of the party as he relights the hot furnace, after being revealed as a con-man who is using Dorothy to gain access to her vast inheritance. The others assume he has simply left Dorothy after duping her, angering Dorothy, who believes that they are jealous and still look at her as "the fat girl" while they were all perfect and popular. After coming to the party to confront Dorothy with the truth about Campbell, Ruthie is thrown through a shower window by the killer who then impales her neck on the glass. At the party, Paige is attacked and trapped in a hot tub by the killer, who proceeds to try and kill her with a drill. After cutting her, he opens the lid of the hot tub and throws the electric drill into the water, electrocuting her.

The party disintegrates when the power cuts out, and Dorothy and Kate argue over who the "Cherub Cupid" killer is. Kate claims that Campbell could be a suspect because they do not know anything about him, while Dorothy counters by accusing Adam (David Boreanaz), Kate's recovering alcoholic on-off boyfriend who is now a journalist. After being told by Lily's boyfriend that she did not arrive in Los Angeles as planned, Kate realizes she is also probably dead, and calls the detective assigned to the case. After dialing the number, she follows the sound of a ring tone outside the house and discovers the detective's severed head in the pond.

Kate then becomes convinced that Adam is actually Jeremy, disguised by reconstructive surgery and bodybuilding, and goes back into the house, only to find Adam waiting for her. To her surprise, he asks her to dance, and they dance together for a while until she becomes frightened, kneeing him in the groin and escaping. She runs through the house, discovering Paige and Ruthie's corpses. When confronted by Adam again, she smashes a Champagne bottle over his head. She locates a gun, but the "Cherub Cupid" killer jumps out and runs into Kate resulting in knocking the gun from her hand and sending them both tumbling down a staircase. The "Cherub Cupid" killer arises and is shot by Adam who appears at the top of the stairs using Kate's gun, shocking and confusing Kate. As she apologizes profusely, Adam pulls off the Cupid's mask to reveal the killer as Dorothy. Adam forgives Kate, explaining that childhood trauma can lead to lifelong anger and some people are eventually forced to act on that anger. As Kate and Adam wait for the police to arrive, they hug as Adam says he has always loved her. Moments later, as Kate closes her eyes as they wait for the police to arrive and she has fallen asleep in Adam's arms, his nose begins to bleed, indicating that he really is Jeremy Melton and the true "Cherub Cupid Killer" after all.

Cast[edit]

Irony[edit]

When Jeremy Melton asks each girl for a dance, every girl but Kate state a mean comment right after he asks them. This foreshadows each of the girls' fate.

  • Shelley
    • "In your dreams, loser."
    • Dies lying down in a sleeping position.
  • Lily
    • "Eww!"
    • Receives maggots in a chocolate box and her body lands in a dumpster.
  • Paige
    • "I'd rather be boiled alive."
    • Gets thrown into a hot tub and is later electrocuted.
  • Dorothy
    • "He attacked me!" Makes everyone believe she was "attacked" by Jeremy after being caught kissing him behind the bleachers.
    • Jeremy makes everyone believe that all the killings were Dorothy's doing.
  • Kate
    • "Maybe later, Jeremy."
    • Jeremy lets Kate live since she is the only girl that did not insult him and wasn't mean to him. She does eventually dance with Jeremy and have a relationship with him.

Production[edit]

Boreanaz shot all his scenes in less than two weeks. Katherine Heigl only had three days to shoot her scenes as she was already committed to the television series Roswell.

Blanks later said in an interview, "Forgive me for Valentine. A lot of people give me grief for that, but we did our best."[5]

Original cast[edit]

The project originated at Artisan Entertainment with producer Dylan Sellers and writers Wayne and Donna Powers, with Wayne Powers attached to direct. The script had a different tone and actors that were to be in the film included Luke Wilson, Tara Reid, Jeremy Sisto. The project went into turnaround to Warner Brothers, was rewritten and Richard Kelly was originally offered the chance to direct, but turned the offer down. Hedy Burress auditioned for the role of Dorothy Wheeler, and Tara Reid was considered for the role, but it was given to Jessica Capshaw instead. However, Blanks wanted Burress to star in the film, and cast her as Ruthie Walker. Jessica Cauffiel originally auditioned for Denise Richards' role of Paige. In the original cast, Jennifer Love Hewitt was to play Paige Prescott.

Soundtrack[edit]

The musical score for Valentine was composed by Don Davis. The soundtrack also includes the songs "Pushing Me Away" by Linkin Park, "God of the Mind" by Disturbed, "Love Dump (Mephisto Odyssey's Voodoo Mix)" by Static-X, "Superbeast (Porno Holocaust Mix)" by Rob Zombie, "Valentine's Day" by Marilyn Manson, and "Opticon" by Orgy. This soundtrack compilation was lampooned in a sketch by Saturday Night Live, which humorously pointed out that many of the bands featured on it were not only unknown to a mass audience, but have oddly nonsensical names.[6]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Artist Length
1. "Superbeast" (Porno Holocaust Mix) Rob Zombie 3:58
2. "God of the Mind"   Disturbed 3:04
3. "Love Dump" (Mephisto Odyssey's Voodoo Mix) Static-X 5:33
4. "Pushing Me Away"   Linkin Park 3:11
5. "Rx Queen"   Deftones 4:28
6. "Opticon"   Orgy 2:57
7. "Valentine's Day"   Marilyn Manson 3:32
8. "Filthy Mind"   Amanda Ghost 3:56
9. "Fall Again"   Professional Murder Music 3:56
10. "Smartbomb" (BT's Mix) BT 3:23
11. "Son Song"   Soulfly featuring Sean Lennon 4:18
12. "Take a Picture" (Hybrid Mix) Filter 8:07
13. "Breed"   Snake River Conspiracy 4:30
14. "1 A.M."   Beautiful Creatures 3:27

Reception[edit]

Valentine had its Hollywood premiere at Hollywood Post No. 43, American Legion, on February 1, 2001. It earned $20,384,136 in the United States and Canada and a total gross of $36,684,136, allowing the film to surpass its $29 million budget.[4] At Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator, the film received a poor rating of 8% from critics, with the general consensus being that "Valentine is basically a formulaic throwback to conventional pre-Scream slasher flicks. Critics say it doesn't offer enough suspense or scares to justify its addition to the genre."[7]

References[edit]

External links[edit]