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Enter the Asylum: Snakes on a Train


Heading into the summer of 2006, there was only one movie on everyone’s mind, Snakes on a Plane.  The Asylum seized the opportunity and released the movie we’re taking a look at today, Snakes on a Train, three days before that movie came out and bringing the serpent action to the ground and throwing magic into the mix.

Which affordable celebrity did they rope into this mess?  I don’t want to alarm anyone, but none.  Everyone in this movie is a completely mediocre, unknown actor.  Trust me, it definitely could have used a B or C level celebrity to ham it up and liven things up.

Who’s the  main character then?   We have Mexican couple Alma and Brujo, who are trying to get to Los Angeles to meet Brujo’s uncle, who is able to lift the Mayan curse placed on Alma.

Wait, curse?  Yes, apparently in this universe, Mexico is a land full of magic and Alma’s family set her up with a rich man but she ran away with Brujo, who is a medicine man.  Alma’s curse causes her to barf up snakes that quickly grow to python size but they need to somehow be put back inside her to cure the curse.

That’s pretty a convoluted way to get snakes on a train:  Right?  They could have literally just had some shady guy try to smuggle snakes and they get loose.  The more you learn about the magic and the curse, the more confusing and insane the movie gets.

Let us take this iron horse to the mystical land of Los Angeles
Let us take this iron horse to the mystical land of Los Angeles

Who else is on this train? Despite the poster and trailer claiming “100 passengers” there’s maybe a dozen people in total on this train, including a sleazy Texas drug enforcement officer, a trio of stoned surfer bros, a dysfunctional family, a pair of small town girls looking to make it big in Hollywood, and these two recently divorced folks who have the most awkward meet cute in the history of cinema.

Oh, and there’s also Frank and his magnificent facial hair:


How do the snakes get loose?  Well, after literally an hour of awkward conversations and some of the lamest fist fights in movie history, a shootout between the sleazy drug enforcement officer and some other guy breaks the jars that the snakes are being kept in and they finally get loose and cause some slight havoc, including eating the dsyfunctional family:


and “infecting” some other people with snakes, causing them to barf up lime jello and pudding and baby snakes.  The snakes are also able to somehow burrow into people’s arms, because magic, I guess?

This movie looks pretty gory from that picture above: Yup, it seems The Asylum finally found their ridiculous sense of gore with this one, as the snakes horrifically kill a bunch of people, people are digging into their own arms and faces to get snakes out and everyone is puking up blood and slime.  Now if there was only a slightly washed up celebrity running around, this would have been the perfect Asylum movie.

Is it really that good?  No, it’s absolutely awful, perfect Asylum movie is kind of an oxymoron because this movie’s pacing is as lazy as the real snakes they have draped across seats on the train.  The highlight of the movie is clearly the ending where Alma, for no logical reason other than, again, magic, transforms into a gigantic snake and starts to eat the train.  The six survivors manage to jump off and Miguel, a fellow Mexican, uses Brujo’s mystical talisman, and his apparently latent Mexican magic abilities, to summon some sort of nuclear tornado that banishes the snake to another dimension.

Is it worth watching? I’m gonna say no, especially since you just watched the best part of the movie above.  The rest of the movie is super boring with only a few hilariously awful gory scenes or unintentional humor.  If you want way more exciting and fun snake killing action, obviously go watch Snakes on a Plane.  If you want a fun horror movie set on a train, I highly recommend Horror Express, featuring Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing.

Next Time: C. Thomas Howell and Lance Henriksen try to uncover the secret of The Da Vinci Treasure.

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