Just out of the carpeted area near the box office of the George street cinema complex is a man holding a sign desperate to sell a preview pass for the night's feature, Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid (a sequel of sorts to the Jennifer Lopez and Jon Voight monster movie, Anaconda). At an unabashed $15 not a single person paid a second look and nobody from the front of house staff bothered to usher his sneaker wearing feet from the area. Factor in the dress of the man resembling that of an unkempt homeless guy, the cardboard notice inked with as much stain, and a diseased look. Maybe they weren't getting near for another reason.
Empty seats in a red sea of wariness filled cinema nine showing up the poor attendance of a free preview screening. Behind, two couples with mouths squeaky and in front, a woman writing a review in the dark with her two cracked up friends. To think again, most of the section toward the back were either on crack, freshly toasted or wanted to star in their own kind of Mystery Science Theatre 3000.
Driving the story and the crazed scientists is a plant growing in a valley in the depths of Borneo. A rare blooming blood orchid straddled with the faux-scientific name of Perennium Mortalis. Properties inherent to the orchid are believed to contain the floral equivalent of the fountain of youth.
As with any other film that drops in a bit of science to motivate characters into dangerous situations, this film raises some serious questions. How many should die to secure the secret of everlasting life? Why does a hard drive look like an external CD drive? What the hell happened to the rope during that snake orgy/mating pit scene? Why name a flower after the sweet spot between the scrotum or vagina and the anus? Spotting a filming shortcut, Norrin noted that crash bank one and crash bank two were in fact the same crash zone filmed from different compass points. Eruptions of flawed logic parameters remained fairly low key apart from the as mentioned anomalies.
Dialogue and character chemistry is plied with a bloody hand of the usual monster mechanics; the set-up serving only to throw the audience off who next they think should/would be taken down by the big bad titular monster(s). Taking up the mantle for comedy, the audience members forced themselves into hysterics with every other line uttered, every other shock slammed and any sign of animal noises causing eyeballs to flick to the sides.
Unease is felt watching this with a serious determination beyond just relaxing and seeing few CG renderings of a few gigantic boas.
Reviewed on Thursday, 7 October 2004