Sharks DO Take Things Personally

This is what I watched this week.

Jaws 2 is the awkward middle child of the Jaws-series. It’s not the classic that Jaws is, nor is it as full of the wackiness that is Jaws 3D. Yet, I still managed to enjoy it. It has a shark that causes an explosion, kills an orca whale, attacks a helicopter, and is eventually killed with electricity. What’s not to love?!
Roy Scheider reprises his role as Martin Brody. Sadly, Robert Shaw’s character is dead so there isn’t even a flashback to Quint, and Richard Dreyfuss’s character is only mentioned in passing.

R.I.P. He's drinking all the apricot brandy in heaven.

The only reason that we even get Roy Scheider back is because he was originally cast as Michael Vronsky in The Deer Hunter but dropped out over “creative differences.” Universal told him he could consider his contractual obligation fulfilled if he would be in Jaws 2. Scheider didn’t want to be in the movie because he felt he’d gone as far as he could with the character of Brody. I can really understand that. But still…he turned down The Deer Hunter!

Go to 'Nam or fight a shark?

The movie finds Amity Island struggling to recover from the events of Jaws. They’ve even built a luxury hotel and condo complex to attract even more tourists. The town officials are once again concerned with money and the tourist season and ignore Brody when he says that things are getting sharky.
The movie really is a reboot of Jaws. People go missing, Brody says they’re eaten by sharks and no one believes him. But the action is amped up. There’s a shark attack within the first ten minutes of the movie.
There’s also an explosion that the shark is kind of indirectly responsible for.

When a dead orca whale that’s been chomped on washes on shore Brody says, “Hey, a shark did that!” Although I do appreciate the scientist’s skepticism since they don’t really know how long the whale was drifting before it landed at Amity.

Brody’s son is a full-on teenager now and all he wants to do is sail. He even sneaks out with his little brother. Too bad the shark has developed a hankering for horny teenagers.

My favorite part is when the shark attacks a helicopter that came to rescue the teens, for the sheer audacity.

Finally, Brody kills this shark by getting it to chomp on an electrical line from Cable Junction. There is a glorious, bright shark explosion.

While the movie is definitely watchable, it’s definitely not as good as the original. You see more of the shark this time and that’s definitely not a good thing. The more you see the shark the less scary it is. Plus, it looks pretty really fake. It just doesn’t have the illusion of life and its head is kind of lumpy and misshapen. As a biology geek, I was bothered that the shark didn’t have a nictitating membrane. For those who don’t speak geek, that’s the third eyelid that some animals have. If you have a kitty you’ve prolly seen that white eyelid when it blinks–that’s its nictitating membrane and it protects the kitty’s eyes when it attacks. Sharks have them too.
While the movie does deliver some scares and some tension, the whole theme feels played over. The stakes didn’t seem as high as in the original movie. Ironically, both of Brody’s children are in danger from the shark but you know that neither of them will be eaten. So that kind of kills the tension.


About scarina

I like scary movies a little too much. I thought I'd share my obsession with you.
This entry was posted in 1970's, eco-horror, famous movie monsters and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Sharks DO Take Things Personally

  1. Amiee says:

    I think the most tense parts were when they were stuck on what was left of their boats. I always felt sorry for the girl who helped little Sean and then got eaten for her troubles.

    • scarina says:

      I liked her. I think her name was Ruth. She was cool and I liked Sean. I didn’t much like Michael, I kind of wished he’d been eaten. Then Brody could go cuckoo and we’d have a way more tense movie as he got his Rambo vs. Shark on.

  2. Amiee says:

    Yeah she was kinda the only non vapid girl not interested in Mike out of the lot of them.
    Particularly annoying was the girl who just lost it, but I’m afraid that’d be me in the same situation.

    • scarina says:

      I liked her and Tina seemed cool until she wedged herself in the hull of her boat.
      I’m not sure how I’d be. Prolly scared but I *have* watched a lot of Shark Weeks. Hopefully I’d remember my Mythbusters knowledge to hit it in the gills.

  3. Jennifer says:

    Jaws 2 was pretty bad but compared to part 4, it was a masterpiece. Have you seen that one yet? I loved your Electric Boogaloo reference.

    • scarina says:

      I’ve seen all of them but I only have the faintest memories of Jaws 4. Jaws 3D is my fave of the bad Jaws movies, solely for the terrible CGI and the attack on that underwater glass tunnel.
      Thanks. I add that to any sequel that I can. :D

  4. Pingback: I Love “The Golden Girls” Much More than You Do | Scarina's Scary Vault of Scariness

  5. crazycanuck says:

    Jaws 2 is definitely watchable, which I would watch again in a second over eewwww…Jaws 3D. I’ve never subjected myself to the last one, maybe if I was in need of a good laugh? Or better yet check out William Girdler’s “Grizzly” or “Day of the Animals”, his crazy nature runs amok films.
    Also “Prophecy” from 1979 is a so bad it’s good movie with a ecological message no less!

    • scarina says:

      Jaws 3D is so bad it makes me laugh but Jaws: The Revenge is just painful.
      I need to see those movies, I love animals going crazy movies. Seventies eco-horror was the best.

  6. toastedgoat says:

    I like Jaws 2 a lot. It puts me in a summery mood. There’s some great music (especially during the opening sequence), plenty of action and two very good scares. Also, as mentioned above, the devouring of the heroic girl is truly horrible, although no gore is seen. Jaws 2 oddly is like an early slasher film and was actually released a few months before seminal slasher Halloween. If it hadn’t been the sequel to one of the biggest box office phenomenons ever, and a film now rightly regarded as a true classic of cinema, I think there would generally be a more favourable opinion of Jaws 2. It’s not great art but it’s good fun.

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