Posts Tagged ‘Samuel L. Jackson’

Movie Reviews 379 – Black Snake Moan (2006)

February 8, 2019

I intentionally did not look up the movie synopsis on my Black Snake Moan DVD before popping it into my trusty player as the fact that the cover featured both Christina Ricci and Samuel L. Jackson , either one alone being good enough to have me sold on a viewing. The lack of any prior knowledge regarding the plot turned out to be a blessing as this was certainly a film that surprised me. In fact, this one has a lot of surprises.

The story is centered on Lazarus (hey, already a bonus!) a weathered black man (Jackson) who has just been dumped by his wife (who has run off with his own brother to make matters worse). Living in a remote dilapidated home Lazarus wakes up one morning to find a battered and barely clothed young woman unconscious on the side of the road, just steps from his front door. Hesitant at first, he cautiously takes in Rae (Ricci) and tends to her injuries. But when she awakens she is shocked to find a lengthy heavy duty chain tied around her torso with the other end secured to a radiator.

The first surprise is that the chain is not there for what you probably think. Quite the opposite to tell the truth. Turns out that ol’ Lazarus has nothing but the best intentions. In fact, he deems himself Rae’s saviour of sorts. Another surprise is that Rae, chains and all, is a promiscuous woman. I mean really promiscuous and when she offers herself to Lazarus it isn’t even a simple ploy to escape. But Lazarus has issues to deal with besides the woman chained in his house at the moment. There is of course the brother who stole his wife. There’s Lazarus’ best friend who happens to be a preacher and is of course shocked upon learning of the captive Rae. And then there’s the pharmacist Angela who seems to have a soft spot for him, but who Lazarus must lie to in order to keep the whole “I have a woman chained up in my house” thing a secret. And then there’s the music. Yep, while not quite a musical, music plays a large part of the story. Not enough surprises? I haven’t even gotten to Rae’s dark secret regarding her mother and it’s not the fact that her boyfriend (Justin Timberlake) who has mighty serious anxiety issues has left her to join the army in hopes of overcoming his attacks.

The blues, liberal sex, biblical imagery, and booze somehow all blend in this story about a man destined to get both the girl and himself back on the right track of life. Does it even sound like a ‘feel good’ story? And yet it is. There are a few other surprises, but watch it for yourself to discover those.

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Movie Reviews 50 – Jackie Brown

June 25, 2012

Jackie Brown (1997)
Channeling 1974’s Foxy Brown and other Blacksplotation films of the era, this early Quentin Tarantino oeuvre already had most of his trademark features that we’ve since become familiar with. Outlandish characters, momentary flashbacks, scenes depicting blatant disregard for life, and some of the snappiest dialogue since Shaft. Jackie (Pam Grier) is a stewardess for a fly-by-night airline when she makes the mistake of performing courier duties for Ordell, a local gun distributor (Samuel L. Jackson), on one of her trips. The feds nab her but then try to use her to get to Ordell, their real target. This sets up an intricate ‘follow the money’ plot involving others including a recently released con (Robert De Niro), Ordell’s girlfriend (Bridget Fonda), the cops and a bail bondsman. Watch out for Sid Haig in the unlikely role of a Judge, and Chris Tucker as a dumb young pusher who presents a problem for Ordell. Not Tarantino’s best movie but that still makes it a movie that is head over heals when compared to ‘regular’ hollywood fare. If you like Quentin Tarantino movies then this is definitely a ‘must see’. If you don’t like Quentin Tarantino movies then you probably shouldn’t be reading any of my reviews at all since we are evidently on a different plane of consciousness. Quentin is god in my books.