Anyone who willingly walks into Shark Night expecting to see something serious is bound to be disappointed. Fortunately, I knew full well what I was going to see: cheese. In 3D, to boot. For my birthday last year in 2011, we attended a late night feature in Reno, NV as part of the evening’s drunken festivities (the night ended with karaoke, if that gives you a fair inkling of how exciting my birthdays are). The movie of choice that year was Shark Night 3D, presented to a near-empty house on opening night, and in three very blurry dimensions thanks to the dimwitted kids that theaters like Century Park Lane 16 seem strangely content with hiring on a weekly basis (fortunately, they finally fixed the focus about five minutes in, the morons).
The story here is a ridiculous one. But it knows that it is preposterous; hence, it’s enjoyable to a b-movie lover such as myself. Your typical group of socially and racially diverse (but only just so) college students that are always present in these kind of movies take a trip to Louisiana for their summer vacation. Their destination is that of a saltwater lake where our main character, heroine Sara (Sara Paxton — yes, she’s related to Bill, so that ought to give you a fair indication of the acting; she also starred in the shitty remake of The Last House on the Left, too), hails from. Ultimately, though, their real destination is the shore of oblivion — as these waters harbor several deadly and very hungry species of man-eating sharks.
The unwanted and certainly unexpected presence of these deadly critters (well, to the characters, at least) is not as unlikely as you might think, and it turns out these sharks are part of a plot so truly mindless, that only a genius could have come up with it. Just so we’re all on the same page when it comes to how seriously Shark Night takes itself, one of the characters — the token black guy (Sinqua Walls) — loses an arm to the sharks, but is still able to spear (yes, the black guy chucks a spear!) one just the same. Further explanation on how light the makes of Shark Night took their project is revealed following the closing credits, wherein the cast perform one of the most intentionally-bad rap songs ever recorded, with the memorable lyric “Shark, I hate your butt.” Oh, and they cast Donal Logue as a sheriff, too.
Yes, it’s silly. Outrageous even. But that’s what made Shark Night 3D a winner in my book. Is it something I’m likely to watch over and over again? Not really, no, but it definitely warranted a viewing or two from me — and I even stole about a dozen Real 3D glasses from the theater to commemorate such a grandiose occasion [cough]. Sadly, I cannot use the aforementioned gimmicky spectacles at home, as 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment are (at this point) only offering a 2D version of the flick on Blu-ray (hence the title now reads Shark Night — sans the 3D). That said, the presentation of this rather tame PG-13 teeny horror item is adequate both visually and aurally. This particular Blu-ray release also sports a Digital Copy of the film as well as several featurettes (none of which exceed the five-and-a-half-minute mark).
In conclusion, had the director of Shark Night (David R. Ellis, the same feller who brought us Snakes on a Plane and The Final Destination) been brave enough to add more skin and flesh to their movie, they may have had something as amusing as Piranha 3D on their hands (a film which, no doubt, opened the floodgate for Shark Night). While they may not have succeeded one-hundred percent, they still managed to crank out something enjoyable — providing you know what to expect in the first place.
It might help, though, it’s your birthday, you’re drunk, and you really don’t give a damn.