Caveman's Valentine, The

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -3 1/2

Artistically, THE CAVEMAN'S VALENTINE is intriguing with its visual flashes into the mind of homeless, schizophrenic Rom Ledbetter (Samuel L. Jackson), who lives in a cave in the middle of a New Yorks Central Park. He believes hes being watched from the top of the Chrysler Building by a powerful, wealthy man. Once considered a musical genius, Rom dropped out of Julliard School and married Sheila (Tamara Tuni), who now appears in his imagination as the voice of reason. Early one winter morning Rom emerges from his cave and finds the frozen corpse of a young man known to the homeless community as Scott. A frantic call to Lulu (Aunjanue Ellis), Rom's police officer daughter, starts an investigation, but Lulu begs her usually incoherent father not to interfere. Nevertheless, the "caveman" learns Scott was a well-known photographer's model and rumored to be the victim of horrendous physical and sexual abuse. Rom's search for truth becomes an obsession and a chance to earn Lulu's love and respect. Dark and disturbing, THE CAVEMAN'S VALENTINE may not be a big box office hit, but Samuel Jackson's performance and the classical musical score are both outstanding.

Many gruesome, photographic images of nude young males being tortured support the rumors that Scott was the victim and slave of photographer David Leppenraub (Colm Feore). Grotesque torture instruments, wax-like body parts, and a realistic human heart model in a birdcage fill Leppenraubs studio. Some photographs also include male rear nudity. As Rom begins to piece the facts together, he is almost run down by a car, chased through the woods, and shot at. Another time hes brutally beaten and kicked. Leppenraub's sister seduces Rom and tries to convince him that her brother is not a sadistic torturer. The very sensual and fairly graphic scene includes nudity. Rom is also shown removing his clothes for a shower, briefly revealing side and rear views of his nude body. Atrocious, offensive language includes 47 obscenities, 22 moderate crudities and some regular profanities. While THE CAVEMAN'S VALENTINE draws sympathy for the mentally disturbed and homeless, much of the film's content centers on the dark heart of society.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Universal Pictures, 100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City, CA 91606

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (26) times Mild 4, Moderate 22

Obscene Language: Many (47) times - F-word 33, s-word 13, other 1

Profanity: Several (5) times Regular 4 (GD 2, C 1, J 1); Exclamatory 1

Violence: Several times Moderate and severe (images of young men being tortured, frozen corpse, bloody body, man nearly run down by car, beaten, kicked, chased)

Sex: Once (graphic with nudity)

Nudity: Several times (breast nudity in sex scene, rear male nudity in photos)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Seductive woman entices man

Drugs: Some social drinking; drug dealer pressures customer

Other: Plight of homeless and mentally ill highlighted

Running Time: 110 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

Click HERE for a PRINTER-FRIENDLY version of this review.