Snakes on a Plane Review

Flying is bad enough without the venomous instincts of reptiles aboard the flight. Considering how literal the title of this David R. Ellis feature is, it would be remiss of audience members to believe for a moment that Snakes on a Plane would spend most of its time, well, on a plane. Bloody and gore-infused in its opening moments where motorbikes ride through dirty streets, caricature-like business villains beat on nobodies and establishing shots build up nothing but Red Bull advertisements, this Samuel L. Jackson-led feature has little connectivity for any of its storyline elements. Keep it that way. It is probably for the best that none of this makes sense.

Snakes on a Plane is a feature that feels and looks cheap. When stomping down on the hood of a car in a daring getaway, the felt fabric and soft material can be seen and heard. Small moments like that feature throughout and while it seems like such a small problem, it is a mountable one that features in small and unknowable blows. The effect is a horrid rampage of lacking quality. Disconnected moments that feature action-inspired scenes with Jackson, suddenly cutting to a celebrity nobody signing breasts and blessing God on his posse.

That is what Snakes on a Plane relies on. Caricature like moments played off as light-hearted banter before the storm of snakes are thrown into the plane. From a yapping dog being launched at a snake and eaten to a bloke being constricted and eaten in surprisingly decent quality special effects, the broad variety of quality within Snakes on a Plane is annoying at times. For every great bit of tension comes another four or so scenes of absolute nothingness. Jackson is somewhat removed from his time with the snakes, mulling around in the cockpit and saving lives without actually being anywhere near them. Although they survive a horrifying time, the happy endings and smiling, braindead faces are not warranted. Their many brushes with death don’t seem to have phased anyone involved with this death-defying trip through the skies. They are better off not knowing of the dangers. Their inability to understand the strangeness of their situation, a simple experience akin to the day-to-day lives of Americans.

Back when Sky Box Office was relatively new, especially to at-the-time six-year-olds, the now comical Jackson quote was played on infamous loop. Over and over. Had it been a VHS tape, it would’ve spluttered out the front in frayed and broken defeat. But that is the benefit of digital technology, not just because once the action of viewing Snakes on a Plane can be wiped with a simple press of the “delete” button, but also because the abundance of copies made to sell this actionless feature on home video means that no matter what store someone enters, there will always be Snakes on a Plane. It is a film that lives and dies on its internet notoriety. Not a particularly good film, but one that has cemented itself in culture as an absolutely nothing piece of bland and mockable entertainment. If Epic Movies can toboggan you with a better riff on your iconic line, then trouble is surely not far off.

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