A man who lost his family in the September 11 attack on New York City runs into his old college roommate. Rekindling the friendship is the one thing that appears able to help the man recover from his grief.
Jada Pinkett Smith
In rural Mississippi, Lazarus, a former blues musician who survives by truck farming, finds a young girl nearly beaten to death near his home. She's the white-trash town tramp, molded by a life of sexual abuse at the hands of her father and verbal abuse from her mother, who seems to delight in reminding Rae of her mistake in not aborting her. Lazarus, who is also facing personal crisis at the dissolution of his marriage, nurses Rae back to health, providing her with gentle, fatherly advice as well as an education in blues music. Rae's boyfriend, Ronnie, goaded by the man who nearly beat Rae to death, misunderstands the relationship between Lazarus and Rae, and vows to kill him. Lazarus, exhibiting a street-smart understanding of violence and its motives, calls Ronnie's bluff, senses that he is as troubled as Rae, and becomes a guiding force in the young couple's resurrection. Written by
I knew as soon as I saw the first trailer for Black Snake Moan that I would have to see it. I was not disappointed in the slightest in the film, which was written and directed by Hustle and Flow's creator Craig Brewer. It tells the story of a broken blues man and the nymphomaniac he aims to cure not just for her sake, but also his own...yet it's so much more than that. It's complex and rich and it manages to steep you in a gritty, sticky, sultry blue Memphis without making you feel like you need a bath afterward.
The characters are (for the most part) multifaceted and very well-written and performed. The accents and the dialogue were carried off flawlessly. However, there was one weak link in the chain: Justin Timberlake. The best I can say for him is that he can pull off crying...it's a rare male actor who can cry convincingly. However, Justin's Ronnie was flat, but as an actor he was trying very hard. I would definitely give him another chance.
Lazarus and Rae (Samuel L. Jackson and Christina Ricci respectively) have a great chemistry and a great respect for each other. This is one of those films where it doesn't matter how good one actor is if the other one isn't up to the task and, luckily, both of the actors were up to the task.
The music was very bit as good as you would expect, especially when Mr. Samuel L. Jackson sings the blues. Phenomenal.
On the technical side, all was brilliance as far as I could see. It was well-edited, well shot, and well-mixed...everything was great. The character and set designs were just right, the casting of the supporting characters (even Justin Timberlake and especially Kim Richards) was spot on... Loved it.
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