The Shallows (2016)

Movie Title: The Shallows

Year Released: 2016

Rated: PG-13

Runtime: 1h 26min

Genre: Drama, Horror, Thriller

Director: Jaume Collet-Serra

Writer: Anthony Jaswinski

Starring: Blake Lively, Óscar Jaenada, Angelo Josue Lozano Corzo, Joseph Salas, Brett Cullen, Sedona Legge, Pablo Calva, Diego Espejel, Janelle Bailey, Ava Dean, Chelsea Moody, Sully Seagull

Review: After making her way to a secluded beach, the tanned and toned Nancy (Blake Lively) soon has her day of surfing and sun interrupted by an aggressive and territorial great white shark. Stranded some 200 yards from shore can she survival the attack and make it back to dry land before becoming the shark's next meal?

The Shallows is a taut little thriller that has a lot going for it. First off, you have a very attractive leading lady in Blake Lively. She not only looks great, but really carries this minimalist tale rather well. She's tough, smart, and makes this situation feel tense and quite believable. Another thing that the movie has going for it is the location. It's picturesque to say the least. So a beautiful getaway and getaway-er, and then you have a scary, toothy villain. The shark is deadly and very frightening, and BIG! Not Jaws big, but big enough to give a real sense of menace to our protagonist and the audience.

It's funny... after I watched it I came to the realization that the movie can be divided into three distinct acts. The first act is look at Blake Lively, especially her rear-end, and please take notice of how beautiful, healthy, and fit she is to be doing what she's doing. Then, Act Two, the shark attacks and Lively's Nancy must assess the situation, establish the obstacles, and treat herself so that she may hopefully survive this horrific ordeal. Finally, Act Three is this shark will truly stop at nothing to make blonde Blake his main course. The first two acts really set things up, build tension as the impending shark attack gets closer and closer, and show Lively's character as a smart med student that can attend to her injuries and what she must do to make it out alive - and that's great! The third act, however, gets a little schlocky as the shark becomes more like a villain in a slasher movie that's determined to kill the final girl. It gets a little ridiculous, but you came to see Blake Lively fight for her life against a shark and that's exactly what you get. Definitely a crowd-pleasing ending, for sure!

For what it is, I did have fun with The Shallows. It's a very enjoyable thriller. I would certainly recommend it to those that are fans of shark movies, Blake Lively's bikini-clan bum, and rough days at sea. And always remember to use the buddy system when swimming, it's a must!

Stars (out of 4):

Fun Fact: Blake Lively revealed in an interview that she is terrified of sharks in real life and that she never saw Jaws (1975).


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