“When you can’t breathe, you can’t scream.” If I didn’t know better, I’d swear this was an original movie from the Syfy channel, on par with Sharknado. It’s one of those movies that is so very bad it’s fun to watch. The first time I saw the snake I burst out laughing and continued to laugh my way through the whole thing. The film opens to beautiful vistas of sunsets accompanied by a peaceful pan flute. How very zen, but obviously not for long as things soon take a sinister turn. I found it amusing to look at the establishing shots of the ensemble cast and try to pinpoint which one of them would eat it, or in this case, be eaten, first. Jon Voight delivers a great performance as a deranged and completely unhinged poacher obsessed with capturing the world’s largest snake. He insinuates himself in with a crew headed by skeezy scientist Dr. Cale (Eric Stoltz) on a somewhat pompous mission to study a lost Amazonian tribe.
With lots of twisty vertigo-inducing shots as well as the ubiquitous cheap trick of keeping the camera at water level, the movie attempts to keep the viewer off balance while watching characters do one amazingly stupid thing after another. Owen Wilson was absolutely wasted, but Ice Cube contributed quite a bit of decent comic relief and of course, there’s an obnoxious British guy who you’re just itching to see get munched. The real let down here is the snake itself. Who thought it was a good idea to have the thing drool? There were a couple of real ewwww moments, including an impromptu but totally unnecessary tracheotomy and a “gullet cam” bit where we see the snake swallowing someone from the inside. I thought this movie was a scream, but not in a scary way. Utterly ridiculous and relentlessly absurd, I really did enjoy it but if you’re wanting genuine chills and thrills, look elsewhere. – BETHANY
For more on all this silliness, visit the Internet Movie Database
Is it just me or does the snake have the same expression as Ice Cube?
Photos courtesy of Cinema Line Film Corporation, Columbia Pictures Corporation, Iguana Producciones, Middle Fork Productions, Skylight Cinema Foto Art, St. Tropez Films and Columbia Pictures (unless otherwise creditedin clickable form)