I've heard a couple people dismiss this movie as exploitative trash. While I could argue a mile against that, I could also make a case for the fact that a body's culture can be just as exploitative to them as anything else they're likely to run across.
Black Snake Moan is a Marner style redemption story backed with a soundtrack that, years after buying it, still lives in my truck. Rae's aggressive sexuality and Lazarus' personal rejections and hardlined morality provide a narrative that carries you through both characters' stuggles with what they've become and what brought them there.
And of course, I ate that shit up.
At my house, the dvd holds a coveted place on my shelf between my Sealab collection and 90's Era Val Kilmer movies so when partner in crime, Art Brut(e)'s own JP, linked me to a still of Ricci right while I was wanting to post something, I had a duh moment. This is why she remains the Eric to my Pam.
I think a lot of people might want to shelve this film as being an exaggeration of its setting, but I don't think it's so far off the base, at least in my own experiences. It's hard to defend where you come from, especially in the face of the negative and down right fucked. But I do get my back up when I hear people judge the people and not the deed. I don't know, I'm not very talented at explaining myself, but that's probably the reason I hide behind a camera these days.