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anonymous kph

B is for Boa vs. Python

So, the "B" movie that you (plural) picked out for watching was Boa vs. Python, no relation to the Dean-Cain-featuring Boa, or the Casper-Van-Dien-appearing-in Python.

The plot is a wee bit ... well, contrived is probably not a strong enough word. But for a Smithee film, this is darned near perfect.

A group of big game hunters have imported a rare giant python (something like 60-80 feet long) for a big game hunt. Of course, it gets away en route. Into the Philadelphia water treatment system. So the FBI shuts down the water to Philadelphia and surrounding environs. Under serious pressure to solve the problem quickly, the FBI agent supervising the operation recruits a (female) scientist who trains dolphins to detect mines, and has invented a tracking apparatus which is implanted into them -- and a (male) herpetologist (David Hewlett -- "Dr McKay" from a couple of the Stargate series) who has access to the largest scarlet boa (coincidentally enough, about 60-80 feet long) on the planet. The FBI guy's crazy plan is to implant the herpetologists's boa with the dolphin scientist's tracking apparatus, and use the boa to track the python. At which point, soldiers can move in, and yadda yadda yadda. Unfortunately for the FBI, the big game hunters decide to relocate their hunt from a private reserve to the aforementioned water system of Philadelphia.

The plot unfolds in a pretty formulaic matter (we were accurately guessing plot twists and bits of dialogue), but it was directed pretty well (especially since this turned out to be the director's first film), and it had a few clever aspects. The FBI agent was actually competent, listening to the scientists, knowing when to step up and when to back down. The scientists were not totally inept in everything but their chosen field. Stuff like that.

And of course, there were the snakes. Not quite bad enough for a Worst SFX nod, but amusing bits of CGI nevertheless. The python was green. The boa was red. The boa's name was "Betty," and I started to call the python "Frank" for no good reason.

The majority of the movie was the scientists hunting the snake, the hunters hunting the snake, and the snakes hunting the soldiers, the scientists, and each other....

...and every time the female scientist referred to her scientific tracking apparatus as "my implants," we laughed, strong and true.


You don't go into B vs P looking for a good plot or good acting (though some did act very well). You go in for a good laugh at the bad special effects and be totally smitten with David Hewlett's portrayal of Emmett (and the lovely Betty:) Hey, even he admitted that he didn't pick it because it was a good script. They paid him alot of money and he got to go on a cool vacation for a month. Having said that, it's one of my favorite Hewlett movies because it's so bad it's good.
"You don't go into B vs P looking for a good plot or good acting"

Heh. Heh heh. Ha. Ha ha ha. Ha ha ha hee hee! *wipes eyes* Oh that's awesome because you can replace "Boa vs. Python" with just about any Smithee movie past or present and that statement still works.

That said, I think The Earl was getting at the fact that this particular premise is pretty fast and loose on the "Suspension of disbelief" when it comes to why the movie exists. It really feels like the movie guys said "You know what movie would be HAWSOME? A movie with a good giant snake and a bad giant snake and they have to fight each other. Oooo, and snake-o-vision. How do we write that?" Admittedly, Smithee movies aren't noted for their clever premises but this one tipped the absurd-o-meter well into the red. On the other hand, Hewlett's character has perhaps my new favorite Most Ludicrous Premise moment ever in Smitheedom when he sums up the snake on snake action plan and then tells the FBI guy that the plan is perhaps the dumbest thing he's ever heard. We gave the character a standing ovation because...Yeah, it is.

Also, the Nice Ballot Bimbo and I decided that Hewlett was adorkably hawt so we didn't mind what was going on as long as 'Emmett' was a part of it. Mmmmm. I was actually thinking that the moment when he's about to reveal Betty where he's standing all Greek God like with the little snake in his hand would make an excellent LJ icon.

P.S. - Welcome to the Smithee LJ! We always have room for Hewlett lovers (*g*)

-Your Friendly Neighborhood Promotions Ninja
he's standing all Greek God like with the little snake in his hand would make an excellent LJ icon.

It has been made into an icon :) I could look around the Hewligan archives to find it again, but yes indeed that's a well-loved scene.
Heh. Excellent. I think it's time for me to do some internets sleuthing!