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Megaboa (2021) Review

No sooner had we reviewed War of the Worlds: Annihilation, which was made for Tubi by The Asylum, than The Asylum release Megaboa under their own banner. It’s a giant snake film set in South America, and any similarities to Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid is purely intentional.

Two hunters chasing stock footage of a javelina get distracted by much larger prey. Much like the two rednecks in Uktena: The Horned Monstrosity who thought they could take a kaiju down with muskets, they think a crossbow will drop a fifty-foot boa. Needless to say, both groups meet the same fate. Meanwhile, Dr. Malone (Eric Roberts, 616 Wilford Lane, The Poltergeist Diaries) and a group of his students, including Jason (Jadon Cal, Last of the Grads, Mind Games), Allison (Michelle Elizabeth O’Shea, Destruction Los Angeles, Godforsaken) and Grace (Emilia Torello, Mr. Mercedes) have arrived at an island to look for petroglyphs.

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Instead, they find Joaquin (Joe Herrera, Inheritance, Let There be Light) one of the hunters we saw earlier. It seems he survived his encounter with the megaboa. But that seemingly ancient shipwreck we saw, that was his boat before something destroyed it.

Writer Alex Heerman (Airliner Sky Battle) and director Mario N. Bonassin (Alien Conquest) follow the standard Asylum template and give us a quick look at the creature before settling in and delivering lots of talk. In this case, it’s accompanied by a spider bite. It doesn’t turn Dr. Malone into a superhero but it does give a reason for him to be absent from Megaboa while the others go get the Death Note Orchid that provides the only antidote to the arachnid’s venom.

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We do get to see more of the creature, and a couple of others, than I expected, but it’s still not that much. The film’s subplot is about rescuing the expedition before a huge storm hits. But that mostly means a cutaway to the mainland for a long conversation between Rita (Sharon Desiree, Devil’s Triangle, Planet Dune) and Jake (Michael DeVorzon, Deadlock, A Daughter’s Deceit). Between that and a lot of walking around a forest that looks a lot more like California than South America and arguing about what to do the second act of Megaboa starts to drag before things start to slither into place for the film’s climax. Which, unfortunately, is still following the template.

The CGI snake isn’t the worst I’ve seen, and it’s better than most of the recent Chinese films on the subject, especially Snake: Fall of a City. The horde of little spiders we see in the cave look like windup toys in some scenes. Their big brother gets to fight the megaboa in a disappointingly short matchup. The film’s final battle is a bit of a disappointment and was done better in one of the Sharknado films.

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While far from awful, and better than a lot of other Asylum films, Megaboa isn’t really a good film either. It’s yet another film that might pass the time if you’re craving a creature feature and not in a fussy mood and/or have been drinking. Or maybe for free once it heads to Tubi and similar platforms. Otherwise, it’s really only for fans of The Asylum.

In the US Megaboa will be playing the following theatres from December 31st through January 6th. On the 6th, it will move to VOD and Digital platforms. You can check The Asylum’s website or Facebook page for more information.

Atlanta, GA: Area 51’s Aurora Cineplex
Cleveland, OH: Hickory Ridge Cinemas
Los Angeles, CA: Laemmle Glendale
Miami, FL: O Cinema South Beach
Minneapolis, MN: Trylon Cinema

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Where to watch Megaboa
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