Ahhh, It’s good to be back in charge around here. See, Joey is having a shark movie marathon today so he is doing some last minute cleaning for that. And it just so happens that the movie for today happens to be a shark movie. Imagine that. Anyways, 12 years after the original movie, the fourth and final movie in the franchise was released. After the less than stellar showing from the previous sequel, the studios decided to go ahead with one more film in the hopes of revitalizing the franchise. Thing’s didn’t quite work out as they expected but judge for yourself as we watch today’s movie, Jaws: The Revenge.
The plot: On Amity Island, Sean Brody is now a deputy in the Amity police department and living with his mom Ellen. Just before Christmas, Sean is on duty and has to go out and clear a piece of driftwood that is stuck on a channel buoy. As Sean tries to throw a rope around the log, a large great white lunges out of the water and bites off his arm. In shock from the attack, Sean starts screaming for help but the sound from the singing choir on the pier drowns out his cries as the shart attacks again, biting through part of the boat as it attacks and kills Sean. Michael Brody, his wife Carla and their daughter Thea, come up for the funeral and Ellen tells Michael that she believes the shark intentionally attacked Sean and wants Michael to quit his job as a marine biologist in the Bahamas. Michael argues with Ellen that it is safe and convinces her to come back with them to the Bahamas after the funeral service. Back in the Bahamas, Ellen resumes her argument with Michael about his job but he goes back to work anyways. Meanwhile, Ellen begins to adjust to life in the Bahamas and starts up a relationship with Hoagie, a local pilot. A few days after they get back, Michael’s partner, Jake, is searching for conch in the mini-sub when he sees a large great white shark. The shark swims past him and heads for the boat, biting into the area that Michael was standing on. Jake is excited about the opportunity and wants to study the shark and Michael reluctantly agrees but tells him not to let his mother know. The next day, Jake rigs up a transmitter and manages to tag the shark with it, allowing them to track the shark’s heartbeat within a 3 mile radius. A few days later, Michael goes back underwater when the shark suddenly attacks the mini-sub. Michael manages to escape from the sub and swims to a nearby sunken ship but the shark follows him, forcing Michael to release the air from his scuba tank, jetting him up to the surface. The events with the shark have Michael rattled, causing some strife with Carla while Ellen still worries about his job but tells him that she won’t ask him to quit anymore. The next day, Michael, worried that he won’t be able dive anymore, forces himself to go back in the water, missing Carla’s unveiling ceremony. At the ceremony, Thea get permission to ride on a banana boat but during the ride, the shark appears and attacks the banana boat, killing the women that was sitting behind Thea. As Carla rushes out to grab Thea, Ellen, feeling some sort of connection to the shark, realizes that it is the same shark that killed Sean and is now after the rest of her family. Ellen decides to go after the shark so she takes Michael’s boat and goes after the shark. After hearing about what happened, Michael goes after his mother, getting Jake and Hoagie to help. Realizing that it would be easier to search by air, they get in Hoagies plane and find the boat just as the shark is about to attack it. Hoagie flies the plane low enough to distract the shark, but ends up crashing it into the water. Michael and Jake manage to swim to the boat but the shark attacks the plane before Hoagie can escape, but he managed to get out the other side of the plane and make it to the boat. Realizing the shark won’t stop attacking them, Jake rigs up an device to send out electrical impulses that will drive the creature mad. Jake uses a boat hook to get the device into the shark’s mouth, but he winds up falling into the shark’s mouth himself and is carried away. Michael uses the device to shock the shark, causing it to leap out of the water. Ellen seizes on the opportunity and when it next leaps out of the water, she steers the boat towards the shark, jabbing the broken bow of the ship into the side of the shark, just as the device explodes. With the shark dead and the ship sinking, Ellen and Hoagie call out to Michael, who surfaces on the other side of the wreckage, where he discovers a badly injured but still alive Jake. Sometime later, Ellen decides to head back to Amity and Hoagie chooses to fly her back there himself.
Jaws: The Revenge was completely panned by the critics, currently holding a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, one of the few films on the site to have such a rating. The main consensus among the critics was that it was “illogical, tension-free, and filled with cut-rate special effects, Jaws 4 – The Revenge is a sorry chapter in a once-proud series.” Lorraine Gary reprised her role of Ellen Brody and did receive a Saturn Award nomination for Best Actress, but also received a Razzie nomination for Worst Actress. The actually received a total of 7 Razzie nominations and won one award for Worst Visual Effects. The audiences definitely didn’t care for the movie as it would make a total of over $51 million worldwide, making it the worst performing movie of the series.
I feel so bad for Spielberg. I mean, he makes a classic movie but the legacy is somewhat tarnished by the lousy sequels. This movie was as bad as the third one, maybe a little worse. Lorraine Gary was decent reprising her role of Ellen Brody but Michael Caine and Mario Van Peebles made the movie more entertaining with their characters. The plot was very different from previous films as they decided to with the shark specifically targeting the Brody family, as opposed to just a shark happening to show up and start killing people. I didn’t think the scenes with the shark were as bad as critics made out, but I did think the shark looked a little weird, slightly crooked as opposed to the normal streamline shape a shark normally has. I also didn’t like the changed ending as the original theatrical ending had Ellen Brody stabbing the shark with the boat, killing the shark, and the shark’s weight broke the front part of the boat off and caused it to sink. Apparently they decided to reshoot it and add the explosion the kill the shark, but didn’t really explain how the shark exploded so you are just left to guess that Jake’s device caused the explosion. About the only reason to watch is if you really like shark movies (like me) or you just want to watch the whole series.
Rating: 2 out of 5