The shark film reviews are back! For those of you who’ve been reading this site for a while, you may remember my early reviews for “Swamp Shark” and “Dinoshark“, and I’ve been promising to get back into the swing of things. Here we are!
If you’ve read the title of this film, and thought “so, it’s the cast of Jersey Shore getting eaten by sharks?”, you’d be about 90% right. Thanks to a real, genuine shark attack on the Jersey Shore in 1916, the makers of this film got away with calling the film this…or maybe the parody laws in America are more lax than I thought. But not only do they need sharks, they need a group of people to either get eaten or fight back, and that’s where the first two words of the title come into action.
Rough facsimiles of 6 of the 7 original Jersey Shore cast members are trotted out – the Situation, who if my eyes and ears are to believed is currently on the British version of “Celebrity Big Brother” becomes The Complication, Snooki becomes Nooki, etc. They seem to have at least made an effort to have the men in the cast bear some sort of resemblance to their reality TV counterparts, but the women are an undifferentiated mass of fake tan and tight clothing – Nooki, for example, is the tall, slim and beautiful Melissa Molinaro, whereas the real Snooki is not really any of those things (not that it matters, just saying). Anyway, I don’t need to hold too many details of them in my mind because they all survive SPOILERS
In my Swamp Shark review I proposed a book called “The Laws Of Low-Budget Films With Sharks In Them”, so let’s go through those rules and see how well “Jersey Shore Shark Attack” fares.
Rule 1: ‘there must be a shot where the three heroes are on a speedboat looking ahead with determination’
Well, we’re batting 1.000 so far.
Rule 2: ‘ there must be a large seafront entertainment event that can’t be cancelled, for some reason’
You’re not just going to cancel a Joey Fatone concert! That guy from that band…okay, I know he was in N-Sync, has a funny little part and then gets eaten for his troubles. 2 up, 2 down!!
Rule 3: ‘at least one character must behave in a brain-buggeringly stupid way, to drive the plot along’
There’s a hell of a lot of proof for this rule. You’ve got asshole rich out-of-towners who take their yacht out into shark-infested waters; rich businessmen who keep drilling, even though they know the drilling is bad and attracts sharks; but surprisingly, none of our main cast do anything particularly silly.
Rule 4: “sharks be super-powered”
The sharks in this film are actually albino mutant killer sharks, a particularly nasty variety that normally stay in their deep ocean hideout; and while they don’t do anything quite as silly as the sharks from my previous two reviews, sharks just don’t jump out of the water to attack people, much less jump from one bit of water, over some land, grab a former pop star in mid-air then splash down in another bit of water.
So, the four rules are still strong, three films in.
This film has some of the most egregious stunt casting I’ve ever seen. First up, there’s an actual Jersey Shore cast member, Vinny, who stars as a local TV reporter. I presume this is why the 6 heroes, while not geniuses by any stretch, are kind to each other, respectful of the Jersey Shore and make the other Guidos proud – one of his requests before agreeing to be in the film? We also have the aforementioned Joey Fatone, who at least is a good sport; William Atherton, the baddie from “Ghostbusters”, Paul Sorvino and a couple of “Sopranos” cast members.
There’s a plot, of sorts. An evil developer wants to turn the shore into a golf course, so lays some heavy concrete supports to turn the pier into the 18th hole. This attracts the sharks, badabing badaboom, the bad guys get eaten or squashed by a runaway ferris wheel, order is restored.
You know what? This film isn’t all that bad. I mean, it’s still terrible by normal standards – the guy playing Paulie D can either do an impression of Mr. D or act, but not both at the same time, and chooses the former far more than the latter; the sharks look like some 14 year old’s first attempt at CGI; and the ending’s as damp a squib as “Birdemic”…but there’s fun to be had. Most of the time, the cast don’t take things seriously, and the combination of them with some heavyweight actors makes for some good times.
Lay back, relax yourself to a few degrees above a coma, and pop in “Jersey Shore Shark Attack”. It will be okay.
Rating: thumbs up