Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Ghost Shark

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion (or other commenters), that's fine. To each their own. These reviews are not meant to be statements of facts or endorsements, I am just sharing my opinions and my perspective when watching the film and is not meant to reflect how these films should be viewed. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 0-5. 0, of course, being unwatchable. 1, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being great and 5, being epic! And if you enjoy these reviews feel free to share them and follow the blog or follow me on Twitter (@RevRonster) for links to my reviews and the occasional live-Tweet session of the movie I'm watching! The best scene in the film was when the ghost shark did some pottery with Demi Moore to "Unchained Melody."

Ghost Shark – 3 out of 5

I guess I didn’t really need the excuse that because it is October (and October means horror) to get up and watch this film.  I’m a pretty big fan of cheesy shark movies and seek out them pretty often when I’m in the mood for a good laugh.  For some reason, I skipped over this Syfy original when it aired in 2013 but this last weekend I decided to give Ghost Shark a chance.  I didn't regret it.

The best part about making your shark a ghost is the special effects team
doesn't have to add waves as the fin slices through the water.

In a small coastal city, an incident with a fisherman leaves a great white shark killed but its spirit is mysteriously resurrected.  Now the creature can use any amount of water to travel into the physical world and bring about death and destruction.  After her father becomes one of the first victims, Ava (Mackenzie Rosman), will stop at nothing to get to the bottom of what is happening and to stop the ghost shark once and for all.  However, she soon learns that the local drunk and keeper of the lighthouse; Finch (Richard Moll), might have all the answers to this otherworldly problem.

Do you have a moment to talk about our lord and savior Ghost Jesus Shark?

The ghost shark learns how to use the phone and
instantly calls the protagonist to tell her that
he has a candy-gram for her.
The first thing that struck me about Ghost Shark—besides the premise—was the fact it wasn’t made by The Asylum.  Since that production company makes most of Syfy’s ridiculous films, I just naturally assumed that this feature was done by them but was shocked to see their name suspiciously absent from the opening credits.  However, as the film progressed and I noticed that it lacked everything that is synonymous with The Asylum—like chaotic editing, terrible special effects, a jumbled narrative and a incomprehensible plot—I found I was no longer surprised.  I’m not saying Ghost Shark is a well-made film but it actually has structure to its story and presentation—something you won’t find in everything made by The Asylum.  Even with its needlessly convoluted issues the film gives with its exploration of its supernatural mythology, the story still has a flow to it that is never bogged down by haphazard editing or odd plot jumps.

Not only does this movie have a ghost shark but it also has a bull.

Who would have thought the sexy bikini car wash
scene would have ended like this in a film
called Ghost Shark?!?
Ghost Shark also has some fairly decent performances going on in the film.  While no one in the film is really commanding attention, no one is phoning it in or overdoing it the way you often see in films such as these (well, there are some actors who are lethargic and over-the-top but they are the minorities in this feature).  However, the true star element to this movie is the gloriously death scenes the ghost shark does.  All of them are super over-the-top but in a way that makes the film fun and keeps it from being monotonous—because, when the film tries to take itself seriously with character development and the mystic side of the story, it’s pretty hard to sit through; however, this is alleviated when you see the completely outrageous and delightfully silly kills the shark brings about.

This is only the first of a few kids to die in this film.  Killing children is
not beneath Ghost Shark.

I’m not going to pretend that Ghost Shark isn’t without its problems.  I already mentioned how the mystic side of the story tries too hard to be over-complicated and it takes itself too seriously.  Additionally, while a majority of the actors are passable, there are some that are truly unbearable.  Also while the special effects work for what the film is a lot of it is still horribly awkward and doesn’t look the best.  Finally, the film doesn’t do a very good job with its character development.  There’s barely any introduction to the characters and I felt I was just sorta thrown in to an already established group of friends and people.  There’s enough here for you to gleam what type of people they are and where they are going in the story but really all you learn from them is some basic descriptions and none of them really grow or develop beyond just being survivors.

Horror tropes have become so common that I bet 100% of people can accurately
guess which characters won't live to the end just by looking at this picture.

Even with its problems, I found Ghost Shark to be a fairly fun film.  It’s ridiculous, fairly stupid and overwhelmingly cheesy but therein rests the movie’s charm.  While it’s not the best example of a great bad movie, I still had fun watching it and it was prime breeding ground for some decent chuckles and for some choice riffs here and there.

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