a theatre, film & pop culture review
The premise is so simple and predictable, it’s a wonder we haven’t seen this rip-off on the big screen before: throw some college kids at a lake house with a couple of bat-shit, creeptastic locals (one of which is way too hot to be believably sadistic) and add sharks — hammerheads and tigers and great whites, oh my. It’s Jaws 3 or 4. In 3D.
If you’re looking for the campy fun of Snakes on a Plane, or even the inferior Piranha 3D, you’ll be disappointed. This (not) bloody (enough) mess with its paper-thin characters and nonsensical backstory (she broke up with him, so he’s killing other people via shark — what??) doesn’t incorporate jaw-droppingly gross deaths or nearly enough laughs (the funny guy bites it way too soon), and the elusive sharks aren’t the terrifying bad-asses you hope them to be.
But there are a couple surprisingly good jump-out-of-your-seats shark attack moments and even a semi-clever shout-out to the film’s obvious inspiration: the phenomenon that is the Discovery Channel’s Shark Week courses throughout, with clunkily incorporated smarty-pants shark facts (that aren’t always entirely accurate). If you’re a horror junkie, it’s not enough to satisfy. But if you’re a horror junkie AND a Shark Week fanatic, this slim splatterfest is the perfect silly summer-ender for you. Just don’t shell out the extra $5 for the 3D — Jaws’s cousin will not be flying at your face at any point during the 82 minute flick.