Normally when I rant about a movie that's bad, it was at least attempting to be a watchable movie, but what am I to do when I watch a bad movie, that was trying to be bad on purpose? That's one of the questions you must face when going into a movie like Shark Night 3D. Many people say this movie was trying to be like one of those Syfy channel made for TV super cheesy movies, like Sharktopus or Piranhaconda, and that it was purposefully trying to make fun of them, whereas other people say this movie was attempting to be real and it just happened to be terrible. Well I'm here to tell you that even if the movie was trying to be a joke, it's still terrible.
So Shark Night 3D is the story of a group of college kids who go up to the summer home of one of them (can't remember which one, they each merge together after a while) and then it turns out that the lake that surrounds the house is filled with dangerous sharks. Sharks start eating people, hillbillies start killing people, and at no point does anybody actually start acting. Let's dive in (not a pun) and see just what makes this movie chum (that was a pun).
"Characters" is such a strong word, it implies personalities and dimensions and characteristics. The people in this movie are more... well toned asses with dialogue. I use this term because there is dialogue and it is coming from people with well toned asses, I know this because the director films butts in this movie like Tarantino films feet. The very opening shot of the college campus is a tracking shot of a woman's ass, a woman who has nothing at all to do with the movie, although as I said, all the people in this movie blur together after a while so it took me about half an hour into the movie before suddenly I realized "Hey wait a second, none of these girls are the opening shot butt girl, so what the hell was the point of her?" Although after another couple of scenes I was wishing we could have continued to follow the adventures of Opening Shot Butt Girl simply because her story had to be more interesting than this one. I don't care if she was just on her way to register for classes, that still would have been more dramatic than this crap.
So anyways, back to the stars of the movie. There's the blonde girl (which means she's the lead), the average yet hunky looking guy (meaning he's who she'll hook up with), the hunkier blonde guy (meaning he's a douche), the girl with black hair (meaning she's dark... or something, not sure what they were going for with her), the guy with the goatee (meaning he's the jokester), the black guy (meaning he's not making it), and the black guys girlfriend (meaning she's not making it). I think there might have been another girl in there somewhere, but honestly who cares? This is one of the reasons that so many people thought that this movie was trying to be a parody of those really corny horror films from the eighties which have migrated to cable, because the characters are so dull and are the most by-the-book horror movie tropes. But I argue that this wasn't an attempt at originality and self awareness, no I argue that this was just by-the-book shitty writing because there is nothing funny or clever in this movie at all involving these characters. Like I said, there is one girl in there who I guess she was supposed to be the mean serious one of the group, but I'm just guessing at that because they just kind of throw her in there with hardly anything to say or do. The same goes for all the other characters, there really is nothing about them that is memorable at all, which makes me think that somebody went "Oh this is how a horror movie cast is supposed to be built up," but then never actually put any thought into it. Like somebody was trying to make a house, so they got the most generic blueprints they could find, and then just stopped building after a few beams were put into place. "Eh, close enough, that could hold up a roof right? People understand what we're going for, clearly it's a house, and not a bunch of pieces of lumber just sitting around right?"
There are a few other horrificly cliche characters, a corrupt cop and a pair of hillbillies, but I'll get to what makes them so flat out nuts later in this review. But for now this movie was called Shark Night, let's get to the actual shark attacks.
The Actual Shark Attacks
You know how cheesy the sharks looked in Deep Blue Sea? Well the sharks in this movie were made over a decade after Deep Blue Sea, and yet they still looked crappier. How is it that technology can advance a decade, and yet the special effects still look like garbage? I'll tell you how, because nobody cared on this movie. They didn't care if the sharks looked good, they just said "Are they done? No? Well close enough, get em on screen." And some people have used the shittyness of the sharks to try and argue that this was meant to be a comedy, but once again I can tell you that's not the case because as bad as the sharks look, they look too good to be a joke. If they had just been the slightest bit shittier then yes, I could see your argument, but instead they mediocratized themselves out of being good on either end of the spectrum.
In a weird way though the sharks are still the best thing about the movie, and it's the reason why I can't totally go 0 stars on the movie, because whoever made this film knew absolutely nothing about how to write a script, but they actually did know a lot about sharks. They did almost no work on the effects, the character development, the writing, but apparently they spent hours watching Animal Planet and researching sharks. Would I rather they have spent that time working on the story? Yes, but at least they researched something, because the movie every now and again just stops to give you little lessons on different breeds of sharks, and yes it seems forced and takes you out of the movie, but it's a terrible movie, why wouldn't you want to have something take you out of that? So at least at the end of the movie I knew some new facts about sharks... so there's that I guess.
Now I won't go into each of the shark attacks, because honestly they were so dull that I forgot most of them (how on Earth do you make a movie about shark attacks and make the shark attacks boring!?), but I will point out one of the dumber shark moments because it brings me into my next point. So early in the movie the character Maliki has his arm bitten off by a shark. He then proceeds to grab a spear and go into the water saying "You take one of mine, I'm gonna take one of yours!" Now I'm going to ignore that they have the only black character in the movie brandishing a spear, because I don't know if the writer of this movie was trying to be racist or if he was just stupid (trick question, he's both) and also because after he actually kills a shark, that's when the true stupidity of this movie begins. Because on this shark there is a camera attached to it. How could a camera possibly work attached to a shark? Don't think about that. Why is the camera attached to the shark? Oh well don't worry, there's a reason... a stupid reason, but a reason.
The "You Got to Be F#CKING KIDDING ME" Moment
So turns out the villains of this movie aren't sharks at all, but hillbillies and corrupt cops who have been filling this lake full of sharks in the first place. Now sure, the hillbillies and corrupt cops are total stereotypes and completely unoriginal, but if you haven't been bothered by all the other unoriginal stereotypes throughout the movie so far, why start now? And lets ignore all the big questions such as "How the hell did no one notice these guys sneaking sharks into this lake?" No, let's get to the moment where they reveal they're master plan, the whole reason why they're letting sharks loose to tear into college kids. There comes a moment when one of the college kids is tied up and is about to be pushed into a shark tank, and the cop is taunting him and slowly begins to reveal his master plan by asking him, "Do you know what the most watched program is on television?" And the moment he asks that I instantly knew what he was going to say, but I couldn't believe it because it was so stupid. I just started crying out "No, no way, do not say it." But he did, he goes on to tell his victim that the whole reason why they snuck these sharks in and are feeding campers and college kids to them is because Shark Week is so popular, so they're going to film this footage of these kids dying and then sell it to people who like Shark Week but want something more hard core. At this point I almost wondered if this was all meant to be one big product placement film for Shark Week and that was why they knew so much about sharks. I've looked into this and still have no idea if that's the whole reason why this movie was made, but I do know that it was released roughly around Shark Week, like it was a holiday film almost.
But there may be one scene that goes beyond that in pure "What the F$ckery." After the film is all done and the credits have rolled there is a scene after the movie where the whole cast of college kids decided to get together, and record a rap music video all about sharks. And while I still don't think that this movie was trying to be funny, they were clearly going for humor in this final music video, but it is so weird and so crazy that I couldn't laugh, all I could do was just stare at this and shout out "What's happening?" over and over again. It's so... it's just... you know what, forget it, I can't tell you how stupid this is. So just watch it yourself.
So in the end was this a joke that fell flat or was it a horror film that was so bad it wasn't even funny? The answer is... who cares? Nobody making this movie cared? The director just slept all the way through it, the writer just collected a check, and the cast barely existed in this film. Nobody cared on this movie, so why should you care enough to watch it?