Valentine Poem

Deadly Details

Valentine - StabCupid was not on the side of the creators of My Bloody Valentine. The blood-lusting censors shot their controlling, sanctimonious arrow through the heartfelt creation of this classic holiday horror. The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) demanded several cuts. The filmmakers acquiesced, slashing out much of the movie’s carnage. Unsatisfied, the MPAA demanded another slew of cuts.

Valentine - ShowerThe filmmakers had no choice but to comply as Paramount Pictures necessitated an R-rating rather than the X-rating that had twice been relegated by the MPAA. It is beyond unfortunate, unwarranted, and, quite frankly, unconstitutional. What a bloodfest for this Canadian horror.

The massive censorship of My Bloody Valentine was allegedly due to the public outcry from the violence of Friday the 13th (1980), along with the then recent assassination of John Lennon. An uncut version of My Bloody Valentine does not exist. Evidently, those scenes are irretrievably lost. The 2009 DVD of the film, however, includes nearly three minutes of the nine that was censored.

Valentine - Dance DecorIn an attempt to profit off the late-‘70s and early-’80s craze of holiday horror, producers Andre Link and John Dunning, both of whom would later produce Happy Birthday to Me (1981), commissioned George Mihalka to direct My Bloody Valentine. John Beaird wrote the screenplay, based on a story conceived by Stephen Miller.

Valentine - Boiler DeathTo avert any rip-offs, the producers initially touted the film as “The Secret,” only changing the intended title at the film’s release. But, the title was not the only secret harbored by the creators. The entire cast and crew were not even privy to who the killer was until the concluding scene was filmed. The creators figured the off-screen anticipation of this who-done-it would be amplified onscreen.

Valentine Group - MineAnd it worked. From this mostly Canadian cast, the performances were naturally natural and earnest.  Paul Kelman, Lori Hallier, and Neil Affleck starred in the roles of the film’s love triangle – a prerequisite for any Valentine flick – while Keith Knight, Cynthia Dale, and Alf Humphreys added comic relief. Veteran actor, Larry Reynolds, rounded out the ensemble in his portrayal of Mayor Hanniger.

Paul Zaza, who had scored Prom Night (1980) and then Curtains (1983), composed the film’s music, including “The Ballad of Harry Warden,” the eerie song sung by John McDermott in the end credits.

Valentine BluffsFilmed throughout Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia, the mine scenes were shot in the town’s defunct Princess Colliery Mine. With lighting and space constraints, along with precarious methane levels, filming the mine scenes was an obvious challenge. These scenes lend credence to the film’s authenticity; however, it is quite stunning the filmmakers were even permitted to shoot under these hazardous conditions.

But what is more stunning is the blatant censorship suffered by the entire cast, crew, and creators of My Bloody Valentine. What a disservice to society. Still, My Bloody Valentine, cuts and all, is one damn bloody horror.

Valentine - Killer in Coal Mine

Die-Anne’s Diatribe

Valentine - First KillMy Bloody Valentine remains in my top five of slashers—even with the cuts. But make no mistake, Macabre Movie Mavericks condemns any and all forms of censorship.

Freedom of speech is an anomaly, a never was. If not already dead, freedom of thought is dying. Conditioning is rampant. Self-censoring is the norm. And that is scarier than any horror.

My Bloody Valentine Verses and Poems


Valentine Heart Candy

Heart-wrenching Valentine
“From the heart comes a warning
with bloody good cheer
 Remember what happened
as the 14th draws near.”
Mabel in the dryer
Mabel’s Launderette
“Roses are Red,
Violets are Blue,
One is Dead,
And so are You!”

Valentine - Happy's Warning

“It happened once,
It happened twice.
Cancel the dance,
 or it’ll happen thrice.
Valentine - Harry Warden
The Escape
“Sarah, be my bloody Valentine!
Daddy’s gone away
Harry Warden made you pay…”

Deadly Details

Director ∞ George Mihalka
Producers ∞ John Dunning, André Link, and Stephen Miller
Screenwriter ∞ John Beaird
Based on Story by Stephen Miller                                         Valentine Party   
Music ∞ Paul Zaza                                                        
Cinematographer ∞ Rodney Gibbons
Editors ∞ Gérald Vansier and Rit Wallis
Special Effects ∞ Thomas R. Burman, Ken Diaz,
and Tom Hoerber

Studio ∞ Secret Film Company
Distributor ∞ Paramount Pictures
Release Date ∞ Valentine’s Day Week 1981
Running time ∞ 93 Minutes
Country ∞ Canada
Language ∞ English

Cast ∞
Paul Kelman as Jessie ‘T.J.’ Hanniger
Lori Hallier as Sarah                                              Valentine Dance
Neil Affleck as Axel Palmer
Keith Knight as Hollis
Alf Humphreys as Howard Landers
Cynthia Dale as Patty
Helene Udy as Sylvia
Rob Stein as John
Tom Kovacs as Mike Stavinski
Terry Waterland as Harriet
Carl Marotte as Dave
Jim Murchison as Tommy Whitcomb
Gina Dick as Gretchen
Peter Cowper as The Miner & Harry Warden
Don Francks as Chief Jake Newby
Patricia Hamilton as Mabel Osborne
Larry Reynolds as Mayor Hanniger                          Valentine - Mayer and Sheriff         
Jack Van Evera as Happy                       
Jeff Banks as Young Axel
Pat Hemingway as Woman
Graham Whitehead as Mac
Fred Watters as Supervisor 1
Jeff Fulton as Supervisor 2
Pat Walsh as Harvey Smight
Marguerite McNeil as Mrs. Raleigh
Sandy Leim as Ben
John MacDonald as Rescuer