Remembering My Bloody Valentine (1981) The Cut Scenes
What better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your loved ones than to sit down with the Lionsgate 2009 DVD release of 1981’s slasher classic My Bloody Valentine. I say the 2009 release as all subsequent Paramount releases were heavily gore-cut versions. Paramount had a nasty habit back in the 80s of commissioning slasher movies to cash in on the genre cow that was growing fatter by the day, only to cut the gore out of the final versions to appease the MPAA. As was the case with many of the Friday 13th series and of course My Bloody Valentine. In the years since its theatrical release the cut footage become something of horror legend, described as cinema treasure by the producers of the 2009 release. Indeed director George Mihalka claimed that up to 9 minutes of final footage had been removed by Paramount (a colossal amount when you consider that most Slasher films only run around 90 minutes). The Lionsgate release (which has Mihalka’s blessing) introduces the best part of 4 minutes of cut footage, almost all of it lingering shots of gore.
It’s amazing how much difference these 3 to 4 short minutes of reinserted scenes make to the film. They lift the movie to surprisingly brutal highs reminiscent of some of the banded video nasties (think Giallo). The laundromat scene is especially vivid in the uncut version, with the scolded corpse bobbing and rotating in the clothes dryer (See Pic Below). There’s also a scene whereby the miner uppercuts his pickaxe through the victims throat penetrating his skull and dislodging his eyeball.., pretty rank and very effective (See Pic Above). There’s also some scoldings and the infamous scene where the miner pushes a woman’s skull against a steam pipe. So there you have it, 4 minutes of glorious gore that on re-watching makes My Bloody Valentine seem more like Italian exploitation than cheesy 80s genre candy. What a great way to spend your Valentines night!