Heroes of the Zeroes is Nick Rogers’ daily, alphabetical look back at the 365 best films of 2000 to 2009.
With all the snakes-in-the-grassroots Internet marketing and general geeking-out about Snakes on a Plane in 2006, you’d have thought it would earn $100 million. Nope — it actually earned $1 million more than its $33-million budget.
Star Samuel L. Jackson — playing a U.S. marshal trying to save a murder witness and frightened passengers on a plane beset by scores of poisonous snakes — called Snakes very well “the greatest movie ever made” in one of the marketing spiels.
Not quite, but nothing else with the full support of a major studio matched its B-movie nirvana of stupid-goodness in the Zeroes. It is exactly what its title suggests and then some — the proof in the primal levels ranging from basic exploited fears to the crowd’s roaring reactions and howls of humor or horror.
Unfortunately, that sort of yelping made Snakes the only movie in more than three decades that, without qualification, demanded a packed theater to enjoy. Those who attended a 4:10 p.m. matinee on a Wednesday probably hated the movie. At the midnight opening show, it was the most ridiculously fun 105 minutes you could’ve had in a theater since The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Hoot-and-holler crowds cheered, clapped and laughed their butts off, but a DVD viewing party? Eh, not so much. No movie with an eight-figure budget released to 3,555 theaters realistically could be considered a cult classic, but if any major theatrical film from the Zeroes deserves midnight-movie perpetuity, it’s Snakes on a Plane.