Anaconda (1997)

Oh, you gotta love the late 90s. You got superstar Jennifer Lopez, Ice Cube, Owen Wilson, and Eric Stoltz as a documentary crew on a boat expedition down the Amazon River. They encounter Jon Voight as a Paraguayan snake hunter in need of rescue after his boat has trouble. It’s not long before the crew is being hunted by a giant anaconda, or are they bait for Jon Voight’s plan to bag a live anaconda?

This is definitely a horror movie “by the numbers” with jump scares, misdirection, building suspense with musical cues and camera angles, and the obligatory Ice Cube comic relief. In most cases, I dislike formulaic movies, but this one has a fast pace that presents the formula with precise accuracy.

Jon Voight brings a great presence of sinister leadership to the group, but his accent seems so ridiculous in a comical kind of way. Eric Stoltz spends most of the movie in an unconscious state, and that’s not a comment on his acting style.

The CGI snake parts are mostly awful, but the creature FX with models and puppets look pretty good.

The climax leaves a lot to be desired, but overall it’s fun little monster movie with a decent cast.


Currently available to stream on Hulu