Metascore
52

Mixed or average reviews - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 34
  2. Negative: 6 out of 34
  1. A gorgeous, life-affirming movie. On paper, it sounds lurid bordering on ridiculous.
  2. 91
    As a filmmaker, Brewer doesn't just yank your chain: He forges a bond with his characters and his audience that produces ecstasy and healing.
  3. 88
    Ricci's performance is brave and effective - the most provocative in a career that has rejected Hollywood norms.
User Score
7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 65 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 30
  2. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. Apr 14, 2013
    4
    Samuel L. Jackson is legendary and he has the unique ability to turn even a strange movie like this, into something that is worth watching.Samuel L. Jackson is legendary and he has the unique ability to turn even a strange movie like this, into something that is worth watching. Black Snake Moan is a really ridiculous story, full of odd symbolism that just really doesn't make any sense. Jackson plays Lazarus, a loner who lives on a farm in the middle of nowhere. He's a deeply religious man, whose wife just left him for his brother. Lazarus responded to this by locking himself away and putting all he has into his farm. One morning he finds a badly beaten girl, with a reputation, laying in the road and decides to help her, but he soon comes to believe that this girl is possessed and that God sent her too him for help. Not knowing what to do, Lazarus takes this sex crazed, drug addict and chains her to the wall of his house. Throughout this film, there are all kinds of symbols that don't make any sense. There are scenes featuring an old blues singer talking nonsense, scenes of the town that we almost never see, and perhaps strangest of all, there are moles added to Jackson's face, something you don't see except it cases of a biography. As for the performances, they were terrific, This is the best performance I've ever seen Christina Ricci give and she really gave Jackson a run for his money. Jackson, was also great, giving what you expect to see from him, albeit with less swearing than usual. The performances were really the only thing this film did have going for it as the events that take place just don't make any sense. The film jumps around, leaving things unfinished, and personalities seem to change as often as the wind blows. It's a pet peeve of mine, but I really hate when great performances are wasted on a film that is so poorly written, that it's almost unwatchable. Black Snake Moan is sloppy, jumps around without finishing things, and at times just doesn't make sense. It was an interesting idea with a terrific cast, but the people behind it were clearly in way over their head and just didn't really seem to know where they were going or even what they were doing. Full Review »
  2. Jan 6, 2012
    8
    Excellent and a must-see. It's gritty, it's full of vices, and it varies its tempo. The ending was a bit soft, and I was underwhelmed byExcellent and a must-see. It's gritty, it's full of vices, and it varies its tempo. The ending was a bit soft, and I was underwhelmed by Timberlake's performance, but Ricci, Jackson and supporting cast got tucked right in. The best thing about the film is it doesn't pretend; it doesn't try to be too serious. Full Review »
  3. MelancholicAlcoholic
    Feb 8, 2008
    9
    Okay, I have to admit prejudice: With Samuel L. Jackson and Christina Ricci, not a lot could go wrong. Add a blistering soundtrack, Samuel L. Okay, I have to admit prejudice: With Samuel L. Jackson and Christina Ricci, not a lot could go wrong. Add a blistering soundtrack, Samuel L. Jackson on the blues guitar, singing AND playing himself, a suggestion of older man younger girl love affair, and Justin Timberlake really acting and this is a powerful film that deserves our sympathy. The surprise of a Justin Timberlake actually acting quite well, yes, it's a gimmick. But even after realizing that it IS a gimmick, it's still one that works. While the story is not that surprising, it's still good enough. All in all, a 9. Full Review »