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Snakes in Movies
 
Slave of the Cannibal God (The Mountain of the Cannibal God) (1978)
 
Spoiler Alert !

Some of these pictures and descriptions may give away plot details that you might not want to know before watching the film.
 
This adventure film is a veritable feast of snakes - we see lots of snakes in it, and some of them are what's for dinner. It's one of the cannibal films, a subgenre of exploitation films made mostly by Italian filmmakers in the 1970s and 1980s. I've watched a few of them, mostly for the snake scenes, but I can't say I'm a big fan. (Because the snake scenes are not very interesting, I haven't put any of them on my list yet except Eaten Alive!, which uses several snake scenes taken from this film.) According to Wickipedia (3/15/20) "While cannibalism is the uniting feature of these films, the general emphasis focuses on various forms of shocking, realistic and graphic violence, typically including torture, rape and genuine cruelty to animals." This one has a bit of everything on that list, but with more gratuitous nudity and fewer scenes of cannibalism than some of the other ones. While it's not considered to be one of the good cannibal films (if that's even possible), I found it more interesting than most, thanks to its many scenes with snakes and other reptiles. Some of these wildlife scenes are part of the plot, but a few scenes of animals in combat are randomly inserted as if they are events happening naturally in the wild, but with no connection to the plot of the movie. (We see a python eating a monkey, a crocodile fighting a large turtle, snakes fighting a large bird, a monitor lizard regurgitating a large snake, and a crododile fighting a monitor lizard, but none of these scenes is witnessed by any of the characters in the movie.)

The plot of the movie involves Susan (Ursula Andress) and three men searching for Susan's lost husband on a cursed island in Borneo covered with dense jungle and a mountain that is inhabited by cannibals. Much of what we see here happens as they are traveling through the jungle to the mountain and encounter the cannibals. Once they are captured by the cannibals, Susan's brother is killed and she is forced to eat him, and she is stripped naked and painted by cannibal girls, then hung up on a shrine next to her dead husband's corpse.

Watch the trailer on YouTube.

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My favorite snake scenes are the really stupid ones, and that inlcudes every time we see a giant snake on a tree drop down on someone in a jungle. Usually the snake falls on a woman so the male hero in the movie can save her, and that's exactly what happens here, when Susan is saved by Manolo, her future lover in the movie. Her wrestling with the snake is too funny to believe as the snake obviously poses no threat at all. Manolo's wrestling is equally funny, and he finally subdues it with a karate chop to its head! Furtunately, Manolo doesn't kill animals, and he puts the snake down and walks away. The snake is a real python.

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Manolo also saves Susan's brother Phil from a cobra. Manolo punches Phil, who falls into the river, then Manolo sees the cobra and tells Phil not to move. The cobra must be twenty feet away from Phil, but that's close enough for a movie rescue. Manolo uses his hat to "hypnotize" the snake then grabs it around the neck and lets it go. We see a real cobra, and a hand grabbing it that probably belongs to an animal wrangler, but the we see the actor playing Manolo holding what seems to be the same snake, so maybe they sewed its mouth shut or something to make it less dangerous.

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After Susan and Manolo are taken prisoner and put in the cannibal's cave, we see the cannibal chief wash his hands in a large bowl full of green water and green snakes and what look like giant rotting geckos. He pulls out one of the lizard things and eats it, then the other cannibals start grabbing snakes and eating them. We see at least two live snakes bitten by men who then tear them apart. (No, the Humane Society did not monitor the animals used in this movie.)

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We see a few other appearences by snakes in the movie. A snake (probably a mangrove snake) fights a bird in the cannibal cave while Manolo watches (for no reason other than to shock us.) We do not see the outcome. We also see a large python swallowing a monkey in a scene faked for the movie. (You can see the monkey being tossed to the snake.) And we see other random shots of live snakes (and lizards) during the film, including a very cool albino cobra.

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