I’ve Now Seen Jaws and It Is Excellent
That’s my hot take on this 45-year-old movie.
Directed by Steven Spielberg
Written by Peter Benchley, Carl Gottlieb
Thank goodness for malfunctioning mechanical sharks as the shark-less filmmaking tricks hold tried and true 45 years later, expertly establishing a solid level of fear so that when the mechanical shark does show up* I was willing to treat it with the same amount of fear I had when it was being implied. Aside from many Coronavirus parallels, this movie is packed with excellent scenes** and provides many legitimate scares. I wondered if I would end up rooting for the shark,*** but the menace was properly recorded and while I would have liked to broker a peace agreement to perhaps avoid violence being perpetuated on both sides, I was okay with how things turned out.****
The verdict: Recommended
(It’s ridiculous I am just watching this for the first time.)
(This happens a lot with movies that were released before I could walk)
Cost: $1.99 via Redbox On Demand
Where watched: at home
Consider also watching:
- Close Encounters of the Third Kind
- Open Water
- The Grey
*It hasn’t aged well, though is pretty impressive from a practical effects standpoint.
**Roy Scheider watching with worry as people frolic on the beach; Robert Shaw’s fingernails-on-chalkboard introduction; Shaw’s tale of the USS Indianapolis; Any scene with Richard Dreyfuss; Lorraine Gary’s realization that sharks can bite through boats and her about face from “it’s okay” status.
***As I did for the whale in the Ron Howard film In the Heart of the Sea.
****This movie also has an interesting split. Most of it is the story of a police chief’s interactions with people in the town and trying to make good decisions. The last section is Men vs. Nature. The end of the film doesn’t wrap back around to tie into the chief/town part. Interesting.
- Does everyone find Richard Dreyfuss as mesmerizing as I do, or is this some imprinting thing that happened to me in the 80s?
- What was the scariest part for you?
Favorite IMDB trivia item:
Several decades after the release of Jaws (1975), Lee Fierro, who played Mrs. Kintner, walked into a seafood restaurant and noticed that the menu had an “Alex Kintner Sandwich.” She commented that she had played his mother so many years ago; the owner of the restaurant ran out to meet her, and he was none other than Jeffrey Voorhees, who had played her son. They had not seen each other since the original movie shoot.
Other reviews of Jaws:
- Kathleen Carroll, Daily News
- Vintage review from Time
“Maybe we’ll have a sharkbite party and then people will be immune to sharkbites!” “What about the economy?” – Hishe
Here’s the link for that amusing episode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxgkP4_kKmg
Content warning: if teeth and gums superimposed on actors faces weirds you out, don’t watch.