A film’s initial reception can be heavily influenced by the marketing of the film. Sometimes, if this is not done correctly, it can completely ruin the perception of the film for the viewers. Black Snake Moan
is a perfect example of this. If you look at the movie poster alone, you begin to make preemptive assumptions about the film such as the exploitation of women, empowerment of the black man and “sex, sex, sex”.
None of these things are true. This is a film that explores the insights of hypersexuality, anxiety, mental health and the healing of Christ all through the perspective of the culture of Mississipi Blues.
If this film was marketed in those regards rather than marketing the film towards teenaged and college-aged boys by exploiting sex, this film could have been one of the best films of the 2000s.
I need to make it clear; One of the best.
The logline states:
“Lazarus finds Rae beaten and near death, and acts as a father figure to help redeem her. But before saving anyone, Lazarus must face his own demons.”
Black Snake Moan encapsulates the rural southern lifestyle that hooks the audience into the film immediately. It’s as if you are living in rural Tennessee. The art design and color correction make you feel the humidity. Meanwhile, the score, soundtrack and live music accompaniments will draw you into the rooms with each character. The best part of the film that makes the audience thrive is the performances by Christina Ricci and the one and only, Samuel L. Jackson.
There is one thing that I so very admire and that would be Justin Timberlake. It was eye-opening to see him play a character type from his native state, Tennessee. I feel like this is one of his most authentic performances that you will see from Justin Timberlake because you can tell that he is drawing aspects of his own anxiety that he personally deals with and adds it to his role.
Anxiety is a huge theme in the film. Every character is anxious about something and it drives them all crazy. This is something that the guys upstairs who were marketing the film should have focused more on rather than nymphomania.
All of these characters have to overcome their uncertainties. Each of them eventually finds their answers through either one of two things, or maybe both: Blues and Christ.
The angel and the devil.
This is what the film is ultimately about, dealing with the fluctuating variabilities of life. It isn’t about hyper-sexuality/nymphomania despite it being over glorified in the film and its marketing.
But, there are the people out there who deal with that level of hyper-sexuality. If you are curious towards the issues of the serious levels of this disorder and you want to see an authentic representation, then this film will help expose to you these issues.
There are many films that display hyper-sexuality but they all really sugar coat it, fantasize and make it fake.
This is real.
“The Zos Knows”.
The Cat of Cinema
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