At the time of writing this, it’s the 2016 Shark Week, which normally means many channels have programmes about these fishy stars of many a film, since one first rose to fame on screen with a simple der dum, der dum theme tune.
That film was of course Jaws, despite being 41 years old this year, it remains barking mad about films favourite film. Our love of this film isn’t even tainted by 3 sequels which we enjoy for different reasons.
Jaws created for us a fascination for sharks, as despite what Jaws makes them out to be, they are misunderstood creatures and not killing machines.
In fact, the real threat is us to them, as the shark finning trade is still rife today, so well documented in the film documentary Sharkwater.
Yet despite our love of them, we have a serious guilty pleasure for shark films, from the awful to the awesome.
After Jaws: The Revenge was heavily attacked for being known as one of the worst films ever made (we have a lot of love for it though) the sharks swam away from the screen for a while, at least until CGI and special effects could improve!
Renny Harlin gave them some success in 1999 with Deep Blue Sea, but again they swam away, with only some very low budget FX efforts turning up on DVD, the Shark Attack trilogy comes to mind. We own Shark Attack 3 for almost being a comedy, it features some of the worst CGI for a Megalodon shark and hilarious dialogue from John Barrowman, with a few drinks inside you, it can be a lot of fun to watch!
Our shark film obsession even saw us go to see Robert Rodriguez film, The Adventures of Shark Boy and Lava Girl in 2005, just so we could see a 3D shark!
However, something seemed to change in 2009 when low budget mockbuster makers, The Asylum released a trailer for their film Mega Shark Versus Giant Octopus. It racked up a million hits on MTV.com and another million on YouTube, due in part to scenes such as a shark jumping from the sea to eat a plane, it was a certified viral hit, so much so it became the companies first cinema release!
The film would spawn 3 sequels with Megashark going up against various challengers, and sharks would serve the Asylum well, with Shark Week; Two Headed Shark Attack and the juggernaut of films that is Sharknado!
During this time, in 2011, Bait and Shark Night finally brought Sharks back to the big screen and like Jaws 3, offered us the attacks in 3D.
A new breed of shark film, on the lines of the found footage theme, would see sharks circling their prey, first seen in Open Water in 2003 and quickly followed by the likes of The Reef and Adrift.
Then with success of Mega Shark and Sharknado, low budget shark films are now released frequently with some bizarre titles, Sand Sharks; Ghost Shark; Avalanche Sharks; Shark Exorcist; Swamp Shark; Sharktopus and the excellent titled Raiders of the Lost Shark! The budget varies from CGI sharks to proper gore fests!
Nowhere is safe, sharks will attack anywhere, from the Bahamas of Jaws 4, other places included within these films are Shark in Venice; Jersey Shore Shark Attack and most recently a lake, in Shark Lake starring Dolph Lundgren!
Sharks are best served on screen in animated films, Finding Nemo and Shark Tale both showed sharks in a much friendlier light, and this looks to continue with Destiny, a whale shark who will appear in Finding Dory this year.
And it looks like Sharks are here to stay, currently riding high in the box office is The Shallows, and it will be quickly followed by In the Deep and USS Indianapolis: Men Of Courage, starring Nicolas Cage, about the true events, so hauntingly told by Robert Shaw’s Quint in Jaws.
Also coming soon is the first ever big budget shark movie, the film Meg, based on the book series by Steve Alten, which will star Jason Statham.
Sharks are here to stay which means the Barking Mad About Films shark collection could continue to get bigger!
Do you have a favourite Shark film? What predator would you like to see more films of? We’d love to hear from you here at Barking Mad about films!
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