If you’ve seen one Anaconda, you’ve seen them all.
Seven years after the original, Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid doesn’t build or improve on the previous. Rather, it unsuitably adapts what was a B movie to begin with.
The plot of the sequel undergoes slight changes from the original. This time, an expedition goes to Borneo to seek a flower instead of a long-lost tribe. The crazed hunter, Dr. Jack Byron (Mathew Marsden), isn’t a hunter of snakes, but instead is searching for a mysterious orchid that is said to be a source of longer life.
With a few exceptions, this serpent sequel looks roughly the same as the original Anaconda.
The snake’s appearance is exactly the same, the effects are nothing new, the style of stalking camera shots is the same, and this film isn’t any scarier than the first.
The only originality in this movie is the cast and the jokes.
The captain of a ship, Bill Johnson (Johnny Messner), and his shipmate (Karl Yune) are the only sailors who are willing to take the group up river during the dangerous rainy season.
The female leads, Sam Rogers (KaDee Strickland) and Gail Stern (Salli Richardson-Whitfield), do a great job acting as scared maidens and powerful women at the same time. The omnipresent, cocky character who audiences want to see snatched off the screen first is Dr. Ben Douglas (Nicholas Gonzalez).
Cole Burris (Eugene Byrd) plays the technological know-it-all who provides most of the comedy.
Anacondas is billed as a horror-thriller, and the best parts really are the tension build-ups and the sudden surprises. However, more screen time for the anacondas would have helped the movie slither along at a better pace.
Anacondas follows the pattern set by its ’97 predecessor with some of the thrills traded in for cheap laughs, and in this sense, the movie could be considered better.
For fans of the original, the sequel will leave a distinct feeling of deja vu.