Black Snake Moan is rich, thick, and satisfying, like a good film should be.
Samuel L. Jackson plays a strong role as the Good Samaritan with an unusual method. Christina Ricci is unashamedly raunchy as the object of his ‘caring’ (which makes for slightly uncomfortable watching when you remember her first major role in The Addams Family aged eleven). Surprisingly, even Justin Timberlake does a passable job as the third wheel in the film.
Back in the 70s, this film might have been labelled sexploitation, and there’s certainly an undercurrent of something weird going on, with Ricci’s character so obviously consumed with lust and yet chained up. A lot of this is explained away by the plot, which justifies much of her behaviour by drawing on the abuse she suffered as a child, but it’s still an interesting choice of presentation by the film-makers in today’s politically correct climate.
It’s definitely a fun watch, a funky film with a blues soundtrack that perfectly matches the dry Tennessee setting, some good jokes thrown in, a decent helping of emotion and humanity, and a well-honed plot with direction that fools you into believing the whole ridiculous thing could actually happen. A good way to spend two hours.