In praise of purely functional titles
Oh. My. God.
Perhaps you've heard about a movie about snakes on a plane called Snakes on a Plane. For months, I thought it was a joke. Even with what looks like a professionally-made teaser (the movie doesn't come out till August), I'm still not convinced. Basically, I wouldn't be shocked if it turns out a couple potheads/Chauncey Gardner types pranked their way into a pitch meeting at New Line, and before they knew it, Samuel L. Jackson was cracking, "Enough is enough. I've had it with these snakes." Kudos on the shot of one of the slippery villains getting sprayed in the face; still more for getting Final Destination 2 and Cellular's David R. Ellis to do the b-movie directing duties. If there's a mongoose on board, no way this doesn't crack my end of the year list.
[Update: It appears that, as is often the case with YouTube, the owners of copyrighted material have descended, deleting what was clearly a leaked trailer. If the studios knew a thing or two, they'd give it an early release: the thing is already an international punchline, and seeing that the trailer delivers the goods -- and looks fucking ten kinds of fun -- would help make this a more refined punchline, the kind that works in their favor. If they play their cards right, droves may actually, y'know, see it. There's no reason a movie called Snakes on a Plane can't gross the same amount as a masochistic Jesus movie. Also, the joke trailers are lame. All ten thousand of them.]
[Update the Second: This is no longer true. But you already knew that. It seems that since I posted this, the trailer has been thoroughly chewed by the zeitgeist at large, to the point where Ellis and co. are literally reshooting footage to make it more...you tell me. If this film's more aware of itself, where's the fun? Yo, fuck the internet and it's rapidly de-cool-ing ways. Here's the reinstated trailer, for what it's worth. Opening line still awesome.]
This just in from the recently begun PFF coverage!! District 13, in which two taciturn French bad-asses pound their way through a futuristic wasteland that calls to mind both Katrina and the Banlieue riots, is largely awesome. After this, Kiss of the Dragon, Unleashed, and Transporter 2, Luc Besson need never direct again.