<Review by: Sailesh Ghelani>
Directed by David R. Ellis. Starring Sara Paxton, Dustin Milligan, Chris Carmack, Katherine McPhee, Donal Logue.
You’re expecting a formula film with sexed up young hot bodied boys and girls retreating to a lakeside mansion and then being picked off one by one by a merciless man-eating shark. You get that but you also get an interesting little twist in the form of something more menacing than the sharks: human beings.
The way this film starts off is perfect. It lowers your expectations with a trite little scene of a couple romancing in the lake and then the hot chick being dragged to her death by a great white. And the CGI shark isn’t very good. But then director David Ellis (Final Destination, Snakes on a Plane) probably knew he was making formula and thought, “Hey maybe we can twist this around a bit, sorta how they did it in The Cabin In The Woods.”
He hasn’t achieved that level of twist or build up in this film but what could’ve been just a regular film about a shark gnawing off limbs till the last two survivors manage to put an end to its devastation actually turns out to be a veiled comment on the real sharks of the planet, the humans that infest this world reeking havoc on nature and mankind for their own voyeuristic and maniacal pleasures!
I won’t spoil the surprise for you except to say there’s more than one shark in this film and they’re not the real villains. Sure some of the dialogue attempting to be a comment on human greed and avarice is a bit contrived at points but it keeps you from sighing in your seat and rolling your eyes at the so-so CGI sharks and average acting. Also, the 3D of the underwater shots are pretty awesome, with bubbles floating right at you and the seabed extending into the theatre. Very realistic indeed.
This film is far better than the recently released Piranha 3DD in terms of everything and though it’s not a good film by any means, it shows us that even formula slasher/tragedy films like this can be made differently if a just an ounce of thought goes in to it.