Snakes on a Plane review by The Grim Ringler

So sometimes you do something just because, and sometimes you see a film, well, just because. Generally when a movie I am not already invested in say, Star Wars has a lot of hype I am not terribly interested. I think thats normal for most of us though. I, like most of you, had been hearing, reading, and seeing crap about Snakes since someone was clever enough to do the obvious and call a movie what it was. Now, the notion wasnt nearly as clever as it got credit (or damnation) for, being that, well, ever hear of a movie called Jaws? Its not exactly a subtle title there, is it? Well, the thing was that with all the hype Snakes began to get, you started to wonder if it was all smoke and mirrors. Was it really as bad as people thought? Was it intentionally bad? Were there really mother-freakin snakes on a mother-freakin plane?

Lets find out, shall we?

After a young surfer has the misfortune to happen upon the brutal murder of a man at the hands of a gangster and his gang, he is suddenly made a target for knowing too much. Hunted by both the feds and the gangsters, he is found by the feds first and it becomes the duty of FBI agent Samuel Jackson to protect him. The challenge becomes then to get the young man to LA from Hawaii safely. They pull a switcheroo with what flight the man is on but unfortunately for the man, the agent, and the passengers of the flight, the nefarious neer-do-wells are tipped to the plane switch and thus load some damned deadly snakes on the damned plane. Dammit. Now, usually snakes are not the greatest of friends, but on this trip, the air system for the plane has been pumped full of hormones that get snakeys all riled up and too angry to worry about each other. AHHHH, Snake! So the plane takes off, filled with the usual suspects rap stars, kids on their first trip, honeymooners, horny-mooners, a fat old lady, a kickboxer, a jerk, a rich bitch, and the rest of the fodder. Things turn deadly mid-flight when the snakes are released onto the mothergrabbin plane and man alive, I dont think you can give enough frequent flier miles to make up for that blunder. Needless to say, people die horribly awful deaths. Boobs are bitten, manhood is munched, and all manner of snake-foolery goes down. Thankfully agent Sam Jackson is on the case and, with his kickassery, some quick thinking, and some pull-togethery, maybe the remaining passengers can outwit their slithery foes. And all of that is well and good but, can anyone fly that mother-effin plane?

Sound bad? Awful? Dreadful? The funny thing is, that the movie isnt that bad. Sure, the logic is thrown out the window as soon as the movie takes flight, but if you buy into the premise, and go in for a fun movie, youll get that in spades. The film takes a bit to get to the snakes but your patience pays off because as soon as the snakes are loose the film hits on all cylinders. The deaths are gory and shocking, the tough-guy one-liners are hilarious, and the film only slows at the end. Whats funny is that, if Jackson isnt all-in with this film, it fails. Its a fun premise, but without him being so over-the-top and having so much fun, the movie is a sham. Its his hilarious acting that brings the film to a head. Sure, the snake FX are very good, and the rest of the cast has fun as well, but no one is as good as Sam. Heck, even knowing the fantastic one-liner he utters about mother-suchin snakes is STILL hilarious. Its his conviction that makes this so great.

The drag of the film is that as soon as you are off the plane, the intensity sinks and your interest wanes. Its like a sudden stretch of plot in a porn scene. Now, these are not bad scenes, and are necessary, but its hard to be freaking out about snakes jumping out at you (and yeah, I know that snakes generally dont jump, but go with me here) then to suddenly cut away.

Most people are going to be all-in or all-out for this. I think if you make it to the theater the best place to see this I would wager then you should be all-in. If you can go with a silly plot device, and just have fun with it, then youll have a great time with the movie. The plot is weak, the acting is so-so, and the logic is nil, but its FUN and thats what it was meant to be. Will this stand the test of time? Hell, I dunno. It will be an oddity, I am sure, and one of those swell trivia questions some day, but I dunno that it will live up to its present hype long term. I am sure theyll make a sequel. I am sure theyll have some unrated edition for DVD. I am sure that in a few months this will be like Blair Witch and the people who saw it will decry it for being awful. I also know one more thing it isnt awful, not in the least. Its a fun, silly, summer movie made by people who wised-up to what they were making and that it was silly as hell, and they ran with that. And I say good on them. Snakes has some great shock scares, some gory moments, and it has some fun action, but more than anything else, it has snakes on a mother-slappin plane.


7 out of 10 Jackasses
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