Monday, August 22, 2016

What Do You Expect From A Giant Snake Movie, or Thoughts on Anaconda

Much like Children Shouldn’t Play WithDead Things (1972), Killer Klowns from Outer Space (1988) or say, WolfCop (2014), Anaconda (1997) is one of those movies that tells you exactly what you’re in for, even before you buy the ticket.  If you do not want to see a movie about a giant snake, you have no business being there and if you’re disappointed, well whose fault is it really?
A lateral if not spiritual sequel to The Creature From The Black Lagoon (1954), Anaconda is a monster movie hiding in an action movie as a documentary film crew travels up the Amazon on searching for a lost tribe, “The People of The Mist” who, coincidentally, worship giant snakes.  Instead of a half-man, half-fish they find a giant anaconda, composed primarily of analog life-size snake models and a dash of the best CGI the 90’s had to offer (which is to say, unfortunate and dated by modern standards).
There’s a tradition of pop stars trying to break into movies, or make the jump from radio and music videos to the big screen.  Barbara Streisand and Dolly Parton made it look so easy in the ‘70s and in this movie Jennifer Lopez, like Madonna in Dick Tracy (1990), or Brittney Spears in Crossroads (2002), or Lady Gaga in American Horror Story: Hotel (2015), stars as Terri Lopez, the documentary film director. 
Eric Stolz plays Dr. Steven Cale, her handsome anthropologist boyfriend, Ice Cube is her camerman and Owen Wilson stars as Gary, the sound engineer.  Kari Wuhrer from Eight Legged Freaks (2002), Hellraiser: Deader (2005) and Sharknado 2 (2014) is Denise, the production manager and screen legend Jon Voight of Midnight Cowboy (1969), Coming Home (1978), Deliverance (1972) and Runaway Train (1985), who is sadly now more famous for being Angelina Jolie’s father, portrays Paul Serone, the Paraguayan snake hunter, in a hammy and movie stealing performance.
And look out for the cameo by Danny Trejo, El Tortuga (I’m currently re-watching Breaking Bad, Hank was such a badass and technically the only heroic character in the series, at least in the traditional sense), as a poacher who tangles with the wrong snake.

my first novel?  thanks for asking:)  it’s a the first book in a 4-volume supernatural martial arts series chock full of killer kung-fu witches, haunted carnivals, punk rock assassins, and a 24-hr diner with the best pie in town…
read for free on kindle unlimited or buy the paperback, available at fine bookstores everywhere (amazon).