Black Snake Moan Movie Poster Image

Black Snake Moan

Pulpy Southern immorality tale is for adults only.
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 2007
  • Running Time: 116 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Depending on how you look at it, the message is either that extreme promiscuity is an evil sickness or that broken people (in this case the town's insatiable slut and bitter, drunk bluesman) can help heal each other. Lots of racial and sexual stereotypes and tensions.

Violence

An acquaintance nearly rapes Rae but instead bloodies her face (so hard she loses consciousness for two days) and then leaves her by the side of a road. Laz holds a broken beer bottle against a man's throat. Two men get in a bare-knuckled fight. A character points a gun and threatens to use it against two different men. Rae attacks her mother with a broom. Laz chains Rae but doesn't actually hurt her.

Sex

The entire film is about sex. From the opening shot of Rae and Ronnie having sex (there's only partial nudity, but it's so naturalistic that it seems more graphic) to Rae baring her breasts and basically attacking a young teenager, the plot revolves around the notion that she's a young nymphomaniac "in heat." The girl can't stop getting it on -- whether it's with the local drug dealer or random guys at a drug-and-booze-filled house party. Rae has flashbacks of being abused by a shadowy man in her past. She spends the majority of the film chained to a radiator in small white panties and a midriff-baring cutoff top. Laz flirts sweetly with the local pharmacist.

Language

Samuel L. Jackson stars, so expect many, many utterances of "motherf----r," "f--k," "d--k," "s--t," and the like. Even the town pastor curses. Both white and black characters say the "N" word.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Laz drinks a lot -- at a local bar and in his own home. Rae not only gets incredibly drunk at a party, but she also asks a dealer to give her enough pills to get "f---ed up." Laz and Rae do shots of moonshine.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this adults-only movie (which co-stars teen favorite Justin Timberlake) is first and foremost about Rae, a young woman with an insatiable desire for sex. Her urges are so absurdly strong that they cause a literal, overpowering itch that only subsides when she finds a willing partner (and there are many). Rae spends almost the entire film in panties and a cutoff top, and her heaving breasts make many appearances. The man who finds her half-dead decides to "cure" her of her lascivious ways by chaining her up to his radiator. Since the film takes place in the South and follows a black man chaining up a nymphomaniac white woman, the film abounds with racial and sexual stereotypes and tensions.

What's the story?

In writer-director Craig Brewer's BLACK SNAKE MOAN, Laz (Samuel L. Jackson), a hard-working farmer nursing a broken heart, stumbles across a "half-naked, half-dead white woman" (Christina Ricci) left on the quiet road next to his farm. But Rae is no ordinary young woman. She's got "the sickness" -- a burning yearning for sex that no one man can sate. Her widely known sluttiness is what landed her in the bloody state she was found in, and now Laz, a God-fearing bluesman, is ready to exorcize her of her "wickedness." Just how is he going to keep her from "getting up under" every man within county limits? By chaining her to his radiator until she repents -- or at least until his best friend, the town pastor, convinces him that it's not his Biblical duty to "fix" her.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

Many viewers will undoubtedly be offended by Brewer's representation of a still-segregated, racist South in which mentioning a black man's "size" to a white man will get you beaten to a pulp. Not to mention Ricci's personification of a promiscuous woman who just can't get enough. But Brewer has a genuine affinity for portraying Southern and African-American culture. Interlacing the drama with blues music (including footage of the legendary Son House) and necessary doses of humor (Rae's memorable encounter with a young teen looking for butter beans at Laz's farm is particularly amusing), Brewer creates a clever (im)morality tale about an unlikely (OK, ludicrous) way to heal an ailing heart.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the reasons for Rae's promiscuity and Laz's unhappiness. How does their unorthodox relationship help them? The film explores many racist and religious themes. What are some examples of each? Is the pastor judgmental or understanding? What is his influence on the characters? What do you think happens to Rae and Laz? Will they continue in their destructive behaviors, or is there a sign that there's hope for them each to be happy? What do you think drew the actors to this movie?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:March 1, 2007
DVD/Streaming release date:June 27, 2007
Cast:Christina Ricci, Justin Timberlake, Samuel L. Jackson
Director:Craig Brewer
Studio:Paramount Vantage
Genre:Drama
Run time:116 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:strong sexual content, language, some violence and drug use.

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Adult Written bywheeldon April 9, 2008
Adult Written bywonder dove October 19, 2013

Pleasantly Surprised!

This was a very good film but it's strictly for adult audiences only! I absolutely love Christina Ricci and she did a tremendous job in her role as Rae. This woman can act a million personalities! Samuel L. Jackson was also excellent playing a farmer named Lazarus who's a blues musician. He stumbles across a woman near his home lying on the road half-dressed and nearly beaten to death. That woman is Rae (Christina Ricci) who hasn't had an easy life growing up to a father who raped her on a daily basis and a mother who knew about it. She's disguised as white trash because of her constant sexual behavior and her need for someone to love her. Lazarus takes her into his home and nurses her back to health, but he knows it wont work without keeping her on a chain so she cannot leave his house. He feels deeply for her and resists every sexual offer she tries to make to him. When a pastor comes for a visit and is at first disgusted with seeing a chained woman in Lazaruses home, he realizes his kind gesture to help Rae get better but convinces him that it's not his job to do it. That's when Lazarus unchains Rae with a piece of fatherly advice but Rae decides to stay. Soon after, the two become so close like father and daughter that his intentions to get her well had worked. But Rae's boyfriend Ronnie (Justin Timberlake) returns with a misunderstanding of their close relationship and after threatening to shoot the kind man, Lazarus puts him in his place by confronting him about his troubles. The couple are guided by his words and marry soon after, then they are off to live their own lives as he feels his "duty" is done. Excellent movie, great cast! A little slow for the first half but keep watching! Language is very strong with many different forms of the f-word and other curse words including n*gger. Violence is strong with a woman beat by a man - she ends up with a bloody face and bruises. Gun threatening. A broken bottle is held to a man's throat. Two men have a fist fight. A woman attacks her mother with a broom in a grocery store with lots of yelling and screaming. A woman is chained but only for her safety. Sexual content is strong and includes passionate love making in the opening scene, another sex scene from behind a woman but not graphic, a woman has sexual tension throughout the movie and tries to escape it but can't, a woman appears completely naked (bare breasts shown) in one non-sexual scene, a woman seduces a teenaged boy but you see her take her top off revealing her breasts but the scene quickly cuts to something else, tense rape references throughout. Rae wears very skimpy clothing through half of the film including small white panties and short tops. There is lots of smoking and drinking with some drugs (pills). Give it a chance, it's a really good story! 18+
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 13 years old Written byemiliederavin September 13, 2013

safe for teens

This movie does have indeed graphic sex and strong language, and talk about explicit sex. This film is suitable for teen because they understand more, sex is nothing new to a teen because its apart of there life.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking