Do not pee in... THE SHALLOWS (2016)

I have no idea what to make of what this movie will be like but it looks interesting at least.

— Alan

I peed in the shallows, Ray.

I do not get this. Saw the ad for the movie many times while in hsopital. A lot of people involved in a jaws were very unhappy later on for demonizing Sharks. This looks like “Jaws open waters 3” and can’t help but think… Why?

You know jpinard, that’s a totally legitimate question. And honestly, the behavior of the shark is one of the things that diminishes my enjoyment of Jaws after all these years. It was actually Jaws that started my initial fascination with sharks, and a hobbyist interest in oceanography and marine biology. But from those studies, you quickly realize that whatever the shark-shaped object in Jaws may be, it is not any kind of shark that we would recognize in reality. In Benchley’s defense, the idea of the “rogue shark” was kind of in vogue in the 70s, that a lone shark may decide that people are easy pickings and just hang out and grab one for the occasional snack. We know more though, that human bites are almost always accidents, a case of mistaken identity. I actually like this about the “The Shallows” trailer, that Lively’s character appears to be a victim of one of those investigatory nips, and the sharks figure out quickly she is not a seal and leave (it’s an unfortunate truth that with larger sharks, like great whites, those preliminary bites are vicious enough to prove fatal anyway). As to the rest of the movie, why they decide to go ahead and start attacking the other surfers and come back for her, well, Hollywood gonna Hollywood. Still, I’ll probably see this.

Sharks scare people. Most of us know that the chances of being killed by a shark are very slim, because they’re mostly going to take a chunk out of you and swim away when they find out you’re not a seal, but that doesn’t change the fact that sharks scare people.

It’s an inherently good setup for movies because the situation puts people in the water where they’re already vulnerable, you get a lot of skin which is appealing for the teen moviegoer demographic, and you don’t have to do a lot of script framework to explain how or why the people and shark(s) are in close proximity. People go to beaches. They swim and surf. They sail in flimsy boats. It’s believable that a bunch of scantily-clad people with little to no weaponry are in the same area as an alpha predator.

If it were as simple as that, it wouldn’t be any big deal at all. But Jaws had an outsized reaction in people, and some of them took action because of it. Overfishing and shark hunting, whether for tourism or for fear that those sharks might be up to something, depleted the shark population drastically. Many sharks, whites included, are long lived, up to 70 years. And they often give birth to only a few sharks at a time every few years. Peter Benchley himself said he wouldn’t write another novel like Jaws, and dedicated much of his time to preservation. Of course he couldn’t have predicted the effect his book would have, but it’s been drastic.

A lot of thalassophobia involved with sharks.

No argument there. The book and the movie Jaws helped push the idea that sharks are ruthless monsters. It doesn’t help that sharks, being fishy-looking are never going to be cuddly or cute to most people.

I don’t know what to say here. I sympathize with the idea that Jaws did sharks wrong, but Hollywood loves sharks.

Don’t get me wrong, I still have a great love for the movie Jaws. When I say what I have learned has decreased my appreciation for the movie, that would be an equivalent on the Chick scale of going from five stars down to four. It’s still one hell of a cracking movie. I just find that I like the movie a bit better if I think of the villainous shark as some kind of Thing-like alien that just took the shape of a shark in order to more efficiently kill people from the ocean.

We just got back from a 10-day family vacation renting a condo right on the beaches of S Carolina south of Myrtle. Had one rainy day, the girls went shopping and I took my 8yo son to see the turtles movie, which had a trailer for Shallows. And I sat there and thought, “Is he going to get back in the water after watching this clip?” He did, but I was on teh lookout for fins once we got past knee-high water. Watching the original Jaws at age 10 didn’t help either.

Even Peter Benchley realized he got it wrong with Jaws.

— Alan

Yeah, the characters in the book were pretty unsympathetic, which left you rooting for the shark, but I don’t think this was intentional on Benchley’s part. Just not great writing.

The genius of the movie was how Spielberg handled the triumvirate of the three central characters. He also honed the plot to a fine point, dumping the goofy affairs and mafia bits, and making the crucial (but expensive) decision to keep them at sea for the last 1/3 of the movie (the book had them rolling back into port at the end of the day over three days).

But, you know, I just have a passing familiarity with it.


— Alan

So why does the woman need to get off the rock and back into the water? The shark would swim away after awhile, right? Is it because the tide is coming in and she will have to swim at that point anyway?

Anyway, as soon as she saw the shark go after the other surfers she should have made her break. Wouldn’t it be busy eating them?

Jaws was a very well made movie, that’s why sharks got demonized. The fear wasn’t about the shark, it could have been giant octopus/orca or even a fictional monster, Spielberg just used a shark. That’s why copycat movies like Grizzly never hit it big, they just weren’t great movies regardless of the creature.

This new movie isn’t going to cause anyone to see sharks in any particular way if it’s not a good movie first and foremost.

Depleted shark population, my ass…there was an unlimited supply of Great Whites that lived in our backyard swimming pool growing up. I’ve since learned that many other people also experienced this as well so maybe these just needed to be transported back to the wild to help the oceanic numbers increase.

I understand that I should be concerned about the far reaching affect that shark movies can have on the negative perception of sharks. However as a dude w/ some common sense, I can separate shark movies from the behavior and capabilities of actual sharks.

I don’t care if the sharks in Jaws or The Shallows aren’t remotely realistic in their behavior. Evil swimming teeth that want to eat you alive. Eeek!

Also, Blake Lively in a bikini. Why I’m certain some other folks might find that appealing. When does this open?!

I have just watched the trailer but I think the implication is clearly that the tide is rising and eventually the rock she is on will be underwater. Sharks fucking terrify me. My parents took me to see Jaws at a drive in movie theater when I was like 5. I have never gotten over it. Thanks mom and dad.