Ever since Jaws graced the cinema screens way back in 1975, there have been so many movies featuring killer sharks, that I think I have lost count. But I honestly have to say that I always enjoy watching them, despite a few truly awful movies like for instance Shark Attack 3. Occasionally though there are some that are surprisingly good, for instance Deep Blue Sea and Open Water. Not one of them has ever managed to reach the same level as the classic movie Jaws however. This year a new attempt has been made with the release of the movie The Shallows. And I do have to say, that it comes pretty close.
In the Shallows we follow the surfer Nancy, played by actress Blake Lively. After a personal trauma in her life, she tries to find solace at a secluded beach. The solace she finds is very shortlived however, for when she enters the water with her surfboard, she gets attacked by a killershark. Trapped on a small reef, wounded and without food, the situation becomes very desperate for Nancy. A battle of wills begins between her and the shark. But as time passes, and Nancy becomes more weak by the minute, this battle might be over, before it even starts……
The Shallows is one of those movies that pretty much stays in one location and has it’s focus on only one person, in this case Nancy. As such, the actor portraying that character has a very hard role, and the movie stands or falls with him or her doing it right. Blake Lively luckily does a very good job at making the audience care about what happens to Nancy. The movie starts of a bit slowly, and there came a certain point where I began thinking: ” I want something to happen now”. After that point, enough exciting things do happen, to make you forget the slow start. The shark itself, even though it was created by CGI, is very convincing. There are a couple of very tense scenes, that will truly have you sitting on the edge of your seat. Is it as good as the classic Jaws? No….but it does come very close. I think it is one of the best shark movies since that 1975 blockbuster, and if you like a tense, at times terrifying thriller, this movie is definitely for you.
I give the Shallows a 8 out of 10 score.