The Tomatometer rating – based on the published opinions of hundreds of film and television critics – is a trusted measurement of movie and TV programming quality for millions of moviegoers. It represents the percentage of professional critic reviews that are positive for a given film or television show.
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The Tomatometer is 60% or higher.
The Tomatometer is 59% or lower.
Movies and TV shows are Certified Fresh with a steady Tomatometer of 75% or higher after a set amount of reviews (80 for wide-release movies, 40 for limited-release movies, 20 for TV shows), including 5 reviews from Top Critics.
Percentage of users who rate a movie or TV show positively.
Intentional low camp always seems wrong unless it's very funny; in trash, one wants clumsiness, even a certain tackiness, and this movie has the production values and the high-tech fluency of a much bigger movie.
The director, David R. Ellis, is not exactly Alfred Hitchcock -- he's often messy in his stagings -- but as his picture rattles along its thrill a minute flight plan he does manage to induce a certain amnesia about its preposterous premise.
Samuel L. Jackson is on record as saying this movie isn't for critics. He's right about that. The problem is, it's not for many other people, either. Unless they're stoned. Or drunk. Or just enjoy making fun of bad movies.
Snakes is bad in a bland, calculated, marketing-is-all way, which is what you might expect from a movie that has been shaped around its marketing campaign from the jump (or from the slither, if you will).
It is a great cheeseball of silliness, a 'B' movie that has enough sense to embrace its 'B'-ness and then squeeze, like a boa constrictor. It is intentionally sublimely ridiculous from beginning to end.
What, exactly, is the joke? If this cornball exploitation disaster movie had been called Anaconda 3: Flight of Fear (or, as was once planned, Pacific Air 121), we could all stop pretending that there was something exotically tacky about it.
A staggeringly inane B-grade monster movie that doesn't pretend to be anything but a staggeringly inane B-grade monster movie and in fact so embraces its staggering B-grade inanity that it achieves a kind of elevated pop-cultural integrity.
There's no possibility it leaves unexplored. Snakes in a cockpit dashboard, snakes in a barf bag, in a runaway drink cart hurtling down the center aisle -- and that's saving the best reptile-in-an-unexpected-spot gags for your viewing pleasure.
The first Internet joke ever made into a movie, Snakes on a Plane is just ridiculous and depraved enough to excite a cult following among high campers who are ready to enlist in a movie that gets one over on Hollywood.
Being as susceptible to over-the-top gratuitous absurdity as the next person, I had as good a time watching the movie as I did listening to the shrieking and hooting from the audience -- both to join in the fun and keep fears at bay.
Jackson is The Man, and he bestrides this film with the authority of someone who knows the value of honest bilge. He's as much the auteur of this baby as the director and screenwriters, and that fierce glimmer in his eye is partly joy.