Anacondas: The Hunt For The Blood Orchid is surprisingly enjoyable, at least for a while. The opening sequence of some guy running through the jungle is pretty cool. And all of the shots of the snakes under water look good. (When the snakes are out of the water, they look less convincing.) The major problems of this film are the script and the acting.
Basically some corporate types travel to a jungle to collect a rare flower because they believe it will grant humanity immortality. The flower only blooms once every seven years, and then only for a short time. So they have to get there immediately if they want to make their billions of dollars, which they do.
When that group hires a boat, it’s a complete rip-off of the scene where Ben Kenobi hires Han Solo and the Millennium Falcon. Seriously. And then when the group sees the boat, it continues to be a Star Wars rip-off. You can almost hear Luke say, “What a piece of junk.” The dialogue is only slightly different.
There is lots of terrible dialogue in the film. One character offers this tip to another character early on: “You want the best young talent – recruit early.” Right. You mean while they’re young. It’s difficult to get the best young talent if you wait until they’re forty before recruiting them. There is also this excellent observation: “Everything gets eaten out here. It’s a jungle.” (It’s nice to know that no food is wasted in the jungle.)
Anyway, a big deal is made of it being the rainy season in this area, and yet the moment they’re on board the boat, it stops raining. And it doesn’t rain again until near the end of the film. Of course, that’s better for the actors. Wet work is pretty fucking miserable.
Not that I have much sympathy for this group of actors. Basically, apart from the Han Solo character, none of the cast has any acting ability. The monkey is actually the best of the actors, at least at expressing emotion. I believe him when he acts scared. Yes, there’s a monkey.
But like I said, a lot of the film looks good. They found some great locations, and obviously spent a good deal of time drawing up their shots. I really dig the fight with the crocodile. It’s actually pretty cool. And the underwater shots after the boat goes over a waterfall look really good too.
Toward the end, the movie gets a little ridiculous. Once it strays into a Goonies rip-off (you’ll know exactly what scene I’m talking about), it’s basically time to stop watching. And at the end we don’t even know if the survivors managed to get any of the orchids or not. It seems like they would have, but they don’t say anything about it. Maybe we’re supposed to believe that all of the orchids were destroyed. I don’t know. It doesn’t really matter.