REVIEW — “The Shallows” (Second Opinion)
Hollywood’s trend of survivor films featuring a marooned single-star continues with Blake Lively stranded on a reef by a great white shark in the harrowing thriller, The Shallows.
There’s not much more to this film past its simple premise. After an amusing introductory ride-to-the-beach scene, director Jaume Collet-Serra (Non-Stop) wastes little time getting us in the water. The brisk 87-minute run time, however; forces rushed character development and hinders the audience’s connection towards the film’s solitary lead. Despite that fact, Lively does a passable job carrying the film – relying heavily on her naturally sun-kissed good looks as AWOL med-student-turned-surfer girl, Nancy.
Based on the trailers, the audience should know exactly what to expect going in, and The Shallows delivers. There’s humor, action and moments of horror: a recipe for a good date night flick. But just to be clear, this ain’t Jaws – and comparing the two would be unfair. The former is a masterpiece while The Shallows is a momentary thrill – a satisfying bite of guilty pleasure cinema. It’ll get your heart racing. It’ll make you cringe and recoil from the carnage and sneak attacks. You may even find yourself yelling at the screen. It’s dumb, pop-corny fun complete with lively eye candy, one mean CGI shark, and the best supporting performance by a seagull since Finding Nemo.
A perfect summer terror just in time for Shark Week, the film keeps audiences afloat by reminding us that nowhere is safe, not even The Shallows. 3/5