Top 13 Shark Movies

To get you all ready for the same eight shark documentaries airing on Discovery Channel next week, we decided to rank our favorite shark films. When the waters calmed, we were left with our thirteen favorite shark movies. Did yours make the cut? Find out below!

13. Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus

12. Finding Nemo

11. Dinoshark

10. Sharks In Venice

9. Swamp Shark

8. Shark Tale

7. Sharktopus

6. Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus

5. Deep Blue Sea

Here's the conversation studio execs must have had that ultimately led to the movie Deep Blue Sea.

Exec #1: What's the scariest movie you've ever seen?
Exec #2: Jaws. Definitely Jaws.
Exec #1: Hey! We should remake Jaws!
Exec #2: We SHOULD remake Jaws!
Exec #1: No. We should go bigger than Jaws. Scarier.
Exec #2: Absolutely. Much scarier.
Exec #1: You know what's scarier than a shark?
Exec #2: What?
Exec #1: A super smart shark!
Exec #2: Yes!
Exec #1: A shark with a mutant, hyper-intelligent brain!
Exec #2: That's brilliant! I smell a Golden Globe!
Exec #1: We have to get Samuel L. Jackson for this.
Exec #2: I'm already dialing.

In the pantheon of Don't-Go-In-The-Water flicks, Deep Blue Sea is as over the top as it gets. Which is what makes it great. The premise: a group of researchers on a floating science lab are engineering hyper-intelligent sharks, when things go horrifyingly awry. What's that you're asking? Why do we need smarter sharks? Don't bother me with your silly logic questions. There's some science-y talk in the beginning about how enlarged shark brains will cure Alzheimer's. Whatever. Not important.

Here's what is important: a hurricane hits the station, there's much havoc-wreaking, and the underwater levels of the station flood. And that's when the sharks break in and start slithering through underwater passageways, ripping through the crew one screaming victim at a time with an efficiency that's both sleek and diabolical (cuz, remember, these are freakin' Mensa sharks). LL Cool J plays the station's cook, making panicky jokes about how black men a) don't swim and b) always get killed first in horror movies. Saffron Burrows plays the sexy, seemingly emotionless scientist who's pretty much to blame for the entire SmartShark problem. Samuel L. Jackson is the visiting investor who (spoiler) gets shredded in the movie's best jump-out-of-your-seat moment (so good that you're laughing moments after it's over). And a pre-Hung Thomas Jane is the daredevil shark expert who you know is going to outlive everyone else, since he's the only one who seems to understand that you don't stick needles in shark brains without expecting some payback.

In the ongoing battle between us and sharks, they win again.--Didactic Pirate

4. Jaws 3-D

Jaws 3-D isn't a great film. I'd argue it isn't even a good film. But it holds a special place in my heart for scaring the ever loving bajeezus out of young me.

We had HBO when I was little and this film came on one afternoon. My parents were clearly not paying attention, so I watched the film. You know that scene at Sea World, the one in the glass tube thing, and the shark keeps ramming and ramming and people are trapped in it? Yeah, that scene gave me actual recurring nightmares. For years I'd have a dream where I was stuck in that underwater tunnel and there was a giant shark ramming the glass and when the glass broke, I'd wake up gasping for air because I'd been drowning.

It's honestly the only film that's ever given me nightmares. Freddy Kruger ripping people up? No problem. Giant ass shark and drowning at Sea World? *shudder*

Well, Sea World and Bunnicula, but that's another story.--Archphoenix

3. Open Water

Open Water isn't the best movie on this list. But it could be the scariest.

Open Water is about a young vacationing couple. They decide to go on a scuba charter and when they come up from diving, discover the boat has left them behind, and... that's it really. Sure, there's a failed rescue attack, stinging jellyfish, arguments, and sharks, but that's pretty much all the plot and most of the action.

Truthfully, Open Water has more in common with The Blair Witch Project than with Jaws. Where Open Water works isn't in what you see, but in what you don't see. This movie is all about fear of the unknown and the unseen. The danger lurking beyond the horizon and the one just beneath your toes. The hopelessness of being lost, knowing your life could end at any given moment, and there's not a thing you can do about it.

You spend the last forty-five minutes of the movie, bobbing along among the waves with our young couple, jumping at every splash, every lightning bolt, wishing it all would just end. Until finally it does.--Chris

2. Jaws 2

Jaws is certainly one of the quintessential scary movies of all time. Nearly 40 years after it premiered in theaters, it is still an awesome film. The '70s fashions and trappings don't interfere with the tension and excitement one bit. How on earth can you top a movie like that?

You can't, of course. But Jaws 2 at least made an attempt to do so.

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water in Amity, along comes another great white shark to wreak havoc on the innocent swimmers, boaters, water skiers, and (yes) helicopters in the area. The odds of such an occurrence (which was described as exceedingly rare in the first film) happening again seems pretty implausible. The odds of the mayor of the town refusing to believe it again after the ocean off his town gained infamy as a shark smorgasbord a couple years earlier is even less likely. But luckily Sherif Brody (Roy Schieder) learned a thing or two about dealing with great whites the first time around, and he's on the job.

The movie is fraught with scenes and situations that make you roll your eyes, including the move to a much more traditional horror movie plot format. (A bunch of rebellious teenagers put themselves in great danger by getting trapped in a place where the killer can attack them at will. You just look at this bunch and you can tell what order they're going to be eaten in and which ones will survive.) The story also plants the seed for the idea that these sharks somehow have a vendetta against the Brody family, an idea that bears its awful fruit in Jaws 4: The Revenge (in which another rogue shark shows up at Amity and follows Mrs. Brody all the way to Caribbean to get payback for its fallen comrades). Even the ending of Jaws 2 (which I won't give away in case my glowing review here has inspired you to see it) has the shark being eliminated in a way that would not be out of place as a way to kill Jason in a Friday The 13th film.

So why is this high on my list of favorite shark movies you might ask? There are a couple of reasons. I read the book (while on vacation at the beach... that got some looks from the neighboring sunbathers) and really enjoyed it. Also, there were Jaws 3-D and Jaws 4, both of which were so incredibly awful that they made Jaws 2 look like a worthy successor to the original.

So, yeah... if you want to see an awesome shark movie, see Jaws. If, after having seen Jaws, you have grown fond of the main characters, see Jaws 2 where they get to fight a shark again. Then, go ahead and watch the third and fourth movies and you'll see: Jaws 2 will be on your list of favorite shark movies, too.--Dave

1. Jaws

Most guys my age talk about how much they love Star Wars and what an important event it was in their lives. Don't get me wrong, I have fond memories of the Star Wars flicks (the first two, at least). But Jaws was my Star Wars. It was the movie that made me love movies. I still have pictures of six-year-old me, proudly strutting around our hotel at the beach in my Jaws t-shirt.

Jaws, directed by Steven Spielberg, is the tale of a sleepy resort town that is awakened by a great white shark. The mayor tells Police Chief Martin Brody, played by Roy Scheider, to calm the vacationers' fears and tell everyone the initial shark attack was a "boating accident." But the shark doesn't go away, so Brody enlists marine biologist Matt Hooper and local shark hunter Sam Quint to help him kill the shark.

Jaws is full of lines that have been referenced and parodied in countless films and television shows. "You're gonna need a bigger boat." "Cage goes in the water. You go in the water. Shark's in the water. Our shark." "Smile, you son of a bitch!"

OK. Maybe it's just me that uses that last one all the time. But hell, Kevin Smith alone should give Jaws' screenwriters co-writer credits on some of his films.

Jaws is an amazing film. It's the first blockbuster to have a nationwide release, the film that basically created the summer blockbuster. The shark's theme, two little notes played on a tuba, are now hummed by anyone who knows that danger's right around the corner.

Jaws scared the hell out of everyone when it debuted and continues to scare us to this day. Why? Because Jaws really could happen.

And that's what makes Jaws so damn scary.--Chris

We showed you ours, now show us yours! What's your favorite shark movie?


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...