Jaws: The Revenge

Jaws: The Revenge is one of those sequels that debases the original film, a disturbingly bad cash-in which offers absolutely no entertainment value whatsoever. The film centres on a vendetta against the Brody family a dark desire for revenge held by an angry shark, still furious that Chief Brody, now gone, killed some of his shark family and somehow possessing the capability to track down Chief Brody´s wife and son.

Hoagie and Ellen Brodie

We return to Amity to find Chief Brody´s son all grown up and his wife sporting a fetching grey wig. It doesn´t take long for the trademark music to make an appearance with some shark point of view shots which were used to such great effect in the first film. So we know it won´t be long till the first shark attack and in this respect we aren´t disappointed as Sean Brody, now a deputy, gets bitten while leaning out over the water trying to move a piling. The actual attack is just terrible, not horrifying, just terribly shot with fast-cut flashes of teeth as poor Sean is dragged screaming to his death with carol singing in the background.

Ellen is comforted by her surviving son Michael, who happens to be a marine biologist (you´d have thought the family would have been put off the ocean by now). Michael doesn´t believe his mother´s paranoid ramblings that the shark had waited and come back for him to get revenge, as of course you wouldn´t because its ridiculous.

Ellen agrees to leave Amity and go to the Bahamas with Michael, who assures her there are no great white sharks there. The plane journey allows the sleepwalking Michael Caine to pop up as pilot Hoagie, one of his vast array of mildly likeable shabby and washed up background characters. Michael works with Jake, played by Mario Van Peebles, who has a comedy Caribbean accent and you instantly know he will be eaten.

Mario attack!

The direction is really dull, despite a relatively short running time and at an hour and twenty six minutes the film frequently becomes tedious. The action which is there is badly shot, flashy and confusing at first and then later it gets worse as you are treated to extended views of a very fake looking animatronic shark. Despite the blood gushing and frothy waters nothing can hide the obvious robot nature of this plastic beast.

The script is really mind bendingly awful, the film keeps trying to reach for some kind of nostalgic emotion but it isn´t conveyed skillfully or tactfully enough to have the desired effect. The dialogue is confusing or just boring and most of the actors don´t look like they are fully engaged.

The gaping plot holes mount up as things progress at a yawn inducing pace. The lazy acting and the appalling special effects combine with the direction to acheive that special made for TV sheen and nothing in the laughable conclusion of this farce can justify its fetid existence.


Reviewed by Simon Hill

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