Snake Hotel (2023) Review
Despite the poster artwork Snake Hotel is not an Asylum film or another Chinese kaiju film. In fact, you can pretty much disregard the poster entirely because while there are giant snakes, they’re still small enough to fit in an English Manor, the same one that Dinosaur Hotel was filmed in if I’m not mistaken. And, as you’ll soon see, that’s not the only similarity between the two films.
Mia (Kelly Rian Sanson, The Killing Tree, Dinosaur Hotel 2), her sister Linda (Natasha Tosini, Three Blind Mice, Darker Shades of Summer) and Faye (Danielle Scott, Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey, Looks Can Kill) are all in the warden’s office at a scumhole prison somewhere in England. Mia and Linda are doing life for murdering their abusive stepfather, Faye is just an all-around psycho who has Mia on her hit list for some reason.
Warden Donny (Jase Rivers, Unhinged Retribution, Freddy’s Fridays) is sick of the three of them so when Miss Fang (Chrissie Wunna, Nutcracker Massacre, The Elevator) offers to buy several of his inmates, he’s more than happy to see them go.
What does Miss Fang want the women for? No, it’s not sex trafficking, that would mean nudity and this film didn’t have the budget for that. She has a mansion full of giant, hungry snakes who like to play with their food. Any of them that survive the night will get their freedom, those that don’t have the knowledge they died helping to develop the perfect killing machine.
Director Charles Solly (Manhunt) co-wrote Snake Hotel with James Solly and Harry Boxley (Mary Had a Little Lamb, Vikings: Blood Lust) but considering how consistently the women are referred to as bitches, whores, and cunts it may actually have been authored by Andrew Tate. I don’t know if this is genuine misogyny, a cheap way to get us to hate the villains, or an attempt at humour, IMDB actually lists Snake Hotel as a comedy, but it’s distinctly off-putting.
Since effects cost money, much of Snake Hotel is actually snake free, with the characters running around dimly lit halls and paasageways under the house trying to avoid the serpents and Faye. In order to add a bit more of a threat to throw into these scenes, the filmmakers dusted off the android costume from Prototype and used it as Miss Fang’s henchman.
Unfortunately, it tends to be more comic relief than creepy, despite its appearance and capabilities. While I just complained about the dialogue, the one time it actually is amusing is when the robot is stiffly walking around, gun in hand, “God…damn…whores. I…hate…whores”. It’s too absurd not to laugh at.
The same could be said of Miss Fang herself. She’s played by a Burmese/British actress and it’s obvious they were trying to make the character the kind of Asian femme fatale that used to be referred to as a Dragon Lady. But for all her throaty whispering and gesturing around with a riding crop she fails to come across as either threatening or alluring.
The CGI for the snakes, while not the worst I’ve seen in one of Scott Jeffrey’s films isn’t very good either. They also, for reasons unknown, made one of the creatures a coral snake, which looks like colourful worms rather than anything scary. Why not a rattlesnake or python instead of an oversized gummi worm?
What is scary is just what an utter pile of shit Snake Hotel is. They took the giant reptiles hunting women idea as well as the setting and many of the cast members from the two Dinosaur Hotel films and added dialogue that sounds like it was written by a team of incels. If you’ve seen those films you don’t need to see Snake Hotel. Even if you haven’t seen them you don’t need to see Snake Hotel.
Snake Hotel is available on Tubi. And for those who live where it’s unavailable, distributor ITN has made it available on their YouTube Channel. If you’re feeling particularly masochistic I’ve embedded it below the trailer.