Sunday, September 03, 2006

Samuel L. Jackson on a plane (with snakes)

Went to see "Snakes on a plane" last night in Basingstoke (Timeout film review here).

It is mildly interesting to speculate why this film is still watchable, despite a plot with so many holes that it resembles a fisherman's net; cardboard characters cut from the book of standard aircraft/police-movie stereotypes; and a lack of any viewer-involvement with the fate of anyone in this film (not excluding the snakes).

I must admit I thought the most moving moment was right at the beginning, when the upside-down-suspended public prosecutor's head becomes the target of a baseball bat wielded by the chief bad guy, in Hawaii. I thought he was quite noble (the former, I mean).

No, on reflection, I believe the film kinda works because the director so doesn't care about any of the standard stuff. He just wants to (a) showcase lots of snakes doing Freudian things with generally well-turned-out-but-frequently-only-semi-clad young people of both sexes and (b) showcase Samuel L. Jackson giving a cool masterclass in the art of being the man.

These two objectives are enough to keep the film flying at about the same level as the South Pacific aircraft itself in the latter stages of its journey.

The film is also recommended if taking your best gal, as she is likely to gasp, with her hand over her mouth, and hold onto you tightly at some of the more gory serpent moments. Perhaps that accounts for the Internet hype. Two hours of CGI-fuelled intermittently-pleasurable nonsense out of your life.