Sunday, September 10, 2006

Movie Review: Snakes on a Plane

Well... given the hype over Snakes on a Plane I thought I'd better go and check it out for myself. I was pleasantly surprised -- if that is the right phrase for it. It is totally cliched, totally predictable, but as far as a horror/action/thriller goes, it is pretty slick and enjoyable escapism. Sean Jones (Nathan Phillips) has witnessed a gruesome murder of a prosecutor and runs for his life. But the killers are after him when the police intervene and convince Sean to become a witness to bring the murder to justice. Neville Flynn (Samuel L Jackson) has the job of escorting Sean to Los Angeles on a plane for the trial. Only problem is, the assassin has smuggled 450 of the world's most poisonous snakes onto the plane and automated their release once the plane is in flight. The snakes are very edgy and aggressive from breathing in pheromone-laced leis and they are set to go! From there on we see the grossest, most horrifying forms of death by snakes that the makers of this film can come up with. Be warned -- there is no subtlety here. This is not a movie for the young kids in the family. There is one explicit sex scene and there are relentless sequences of terror and violence. As I said, the movie is saturated with cliched characters and plot devices and, guess what -- Samuel L Jackson is the hero of the day -- but it is all done smartly and the movie speeds along at a breathtaking pace. Snakes on a Plane has the feel of those old matinee horror/monster movies updated with amazing CGI effects. The only purpose this movie has is pure, unadulterated, manipulative entertainment. This won't be a movie for everyone -- particularly if you have a snake phobia! But if you want to subject yourself to some full-on action/horror trashiness that requires no thinking, then you might like to give it a go. But don't get snakey with me if you don't enjoy it. Make sure you take the content warning below seriously. This is a movie with real bite! And I wouldn't be surprised if there are more plane flights to come with every other human phobia-related creature to scare us all to death. My Rating: *** (out of 5) Positive Review 'Snakes was the most exuberantly trashy delight of this summer movie season or last.' - Scott Foundas/LA Weekly Negative Review 'Not since Pet Rocks riveted the nation have so many gotten so excited over so little.' - Nathan Rabin/The Onion (A.V. Club) (This review contains some coarse language) Content Warning a scene of sexuality and drug use, and intense sequences of terror and violence Australia: M USA: R

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