Starring: Sara Paxton, Dustin Milligan, Chris Carmack, Donal Logue
Directed by: David R. Ellis
Written by: Will Hayes, Jesse Studenberg
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Runtime: 90 minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: 1/3/2011
HTS Overall Score:68
Arriving by boat at her family's Louisiana lake island cabin, Sara (Sara Paxton) and her friends quickly strip down to their swimsuits for a weekend of fun in the sun. But when star football player Malik (Sinqua Walls) stumbles from the salt-water lake with his arm torn off, the party mood quickly evaporates. Assuming the injury was caused by a freak wake-boarding accident, the group realizes they have to get Malik to a hospital on the other side of the lake, and fast. But as they set out in a tiny speedboat, the college friends discover the lake has been stocked with hundreds of massive, flesh-eating sharks! As they face one grisly death after another, Sara and the others struggle desperately to fend off the sharks, get help and stay alive long enough to reach the safety of dry land.
Ever since I saw the first trailer for Shark Night last year, I knew without a doubt that I would end up watching it. Now that I have seen it I can say that it is even worse than I thought it would be, and not in a good way. Let’s put it this way, this film makes 2010’s Piranha 3D feel like the original Jaws by comparison. It’s not that there are sharks eating a bunch of college kids at random. It’s not that it has incredibly bad acting; no I can handle all of that. What I take issue with is that they actually tried to create some stupid plot to the movie to try and deter the audience into believing that there is something more than college students getting eaten by sharks. Well, here’s a tip to the filmmakers and studios; if you will actually make a shark movie that is about a giant shark eating people with really good CGI; we will watch it. Just don’t bog it down with some dumb story about two idiot gulf-coast yokels who are some how smart enough to train sharks to kill on command.
Shark Night 3D was natively shot in 3D and unfortunately the effects are not any better than a made for TV SyFy channel Saturday night movie. The CGI is laughable and so are some of the conventional effects. So I’ve covered the script, the effects, and the bad acting. But I feel like I am forgetting something….
Oh that’s right, the movie is PG-13 so there really are no ‘kill’ scenes to speak of. I know right? A movie made in 2011 about killer sharks trained by locals down around Whiskey Bay and it’s PG-13. Look, I love brainless, over the top killer (insert animal name here) movies just as much as the next person, but this one is just a big old bucket of chum IMO...
Rated PG-13 for violence and terror, disturbing images, sexual references, partial nudity, language and thematic material.
The 1080P AVC video transfer isn’t bad, it isn’t outstanding, but it isn’t bad. The resolution is sharp and near perfect. The colors are softly muted but are so as a result of the filming process and not a deficiency of the transfer. As a matter of fact, I could not find any deficiencies to complain about on the transfer itself. The black levels were a little off in a couple of scenes but I really think that is because the film was shot in 3D and black levels suffered a bit in the process of converting it to 2D. Flesh tones were accurately depicted and maybe just a bit warm at times. The biggest issue I have with the video actually has nothing to do with the transfer per se but rather an issue with the shoddy CGI effects. As I mentioned earlier in the review, the sharks looked incredibly bad as did most of the special effects in general whether they were CGI or conventional. As I mentioned, not a bad transfer, but nothing to boast about by any means.
The DTS-HD-MA was about on par with the video transfer. There was nothing really exciting about the whole thing. Dialogue reproduction was fine and directionality was very well done. I found the surround activity to be lacking in general as it seemed there were some missed opportunities to add some tension to a given scene by placing some subtle reminders of what was in the water but alas there was no payoff. There was an explosion and some gunfire that I felt lacked impact and even the shark attacks seemed to be a bit lacking. But these things were all a result of the mediocre sound design and not a product of a bad transfer. The sound was crystal clear and very articulated coming through my speakers. LFE was fairly non-existent by my standards and the score was ‘OK’ at best. So the sound quality was good, the sound design; not so much.
- Shark Attack!
- Kill Machine!
- Ellis Island
- Shark night‘s Survival Guide
- Fake sharks real scares
- Theatrical trailer
- Digital Copy Bonus Disc
Shark Night may appeal to a few people out there and some of you may be able to look past the pointless subplot, for lack of a better word, but for me it was just too stupid to go unnoticed and I am now dumber for having sat through it. I came away with a feeling of “wow, that’s 90 minute I’ll never get back” and I would have rather watched Transformers: Rise of the Fallen again; at least there would have been great sound and PQ to go with it. If you like movies about killer predators, then here is a list of some movies that would suit the bill much better than Shark Night: Piranha 3D, Primeval, Anaconda, Eight Legged Freaks, Lake Placid, Ghost and the Darkness and Deep Blue Sea. My point is that you don’t waste your time or money on this catastrophe and if you really feel you must watch it, at least rent it first. Recommendation: Skip It!
Recommendation: Skip It!