Saturday, September 09, 2006

Snakes On A Plane

Sometimes, I enjoy watching terrible movies and laughing at them. I don't do it all the time but if there's nothing on and I see a B-horror movie or just a random action flick, I may watch it. I fully expected to see one of these types of movies (only with more recognizable people) when I went to see Snakes On A Plane. Fortunately, my expectations were met.

Snakes On A Plane
has a plot (and a title) that only B-movie fans could love. A man witnesses a murder by the hands of a powerful drug dealer. Samuel L. Jackson plays the FBI agent assigned to protect him as they fly from Hawaii to Los Angeles so that he can testify against the drug dealer. The drug dealer, in an apparent “desperate” move, decides to take down the flight the FBI agent and witness are on by unleashing a cargo box full of incredibly dangerous, poisonous and (thanks to pheromones) pissed off snakes.

Like every B-movie and bad horror movie, Snakes On A Plane is filled with a bunch of random, one-dimensional characters. They include a Paris Hilton-ripoff, a germphobic hip-hop star and his crew, a couple on their honeymoon (and the husband is afraid of flying), two young unattended kids, a flight attendant on her final flight before leaving her job, and a male flight attendant who is seemingly gay. A few of these characters are played by recognizable actors including Julianna Margulies, Flex Alexander, and Kenan Thompson.

Although a little too much time is spent on establishing these characters (after all, we don't really give a damn about them), things get moving once the snakes are unleashed. Snakes On A Plane was directed by David R. Ellis. He directed Final Destination 2 and he brings the same light, “you wouldn't want that to happen to you,” style to this movie. The snakes in the film bite in every single place you'd never want them to which generates laughs and shocks instead of actual scares. Most of the snakes in the film are done with CG and bad CG at that. The bad CG only stands to make things funnier.

As the world's leading on-screen badass and star of the film, Samuel L. Jackson has the best lines and the best non-snake biting scenes. He plays the role at the right amount of seriousness. He's obviously not trying that hard, but he tries just hard enough to make the ridiculous sound semi-believable. The film overall takes itself seriously but not serious enough where scenes like the one involving a snake and a little dog aren't funny. Part of me wished that they played up the silly elements a little bit more. For example, one of the characters in the film is a kickboxer. In a film such as this, I'm amazed that they didn't have one scene in the movie where the kickboxer kicked one of the snakes. If the movie had a little more fun with its premise, that scene probably would have happened in the film.

Overall, Snakes On A Plane is definitely a fun time at the movies, especially with the right kind of crowd. Don't go into this movie expecting a legitimate thriller, a scary horror film, or a Scary Movie-esque comedy. Snakes On A Plane is just simply a bad movie that will make you laugh and there's nothing wrong with that. Can you imagine how much fun you could've had at other movies if you knew the movies were going to be bad before you went in?

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