Jaws 3 (1983)

DVD Cover (Universal)
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Overall Rating 41%
Overall Rating
Ranked #2,175
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Genres / Traits: Horror Natural Horror Sharks 3-D

Connections: Jaws

This third film in the series follows a group of marine biologists attempting to capture a young great white shark that has wandered into Florida's Sea World Park. However, later it is discovered that the shark's 35-foot mother is also a guest at Sea World. What follows is the shark wreaking havoc on the visitors in the park. --TMDb
Review by Nirrad
Added: January 18, 2008
What happens when a movie becomes a huge financial success? It gets turned into a franchise. What happens when a movie gets turned into a franchise? It gets milked for all it's worth, eventually losing its value. That's exactly what happened to the Jaws franchise. It started out as a great book, made into a great movie, then ruined with a bunch of lame sequels that were made to gain a quick buck by using the name Jaws.

After the success of Jaws 2, Universal knew that they could squeeze more money out, so they decided to make Jaws 3. They knew this was a dieing franchise, so they needed a gimmick to draw the audience into the theaters to watch this film. That gimmick was putting the movie in 3-D. In the early 1980's, 3-D movies started to become popular again, and a lot of movies were shot in 3-D, and some were actually quite impressive. But when Jaws 3 was released on VHS and DVD, the 3-D sequences were left out, so we were just left with a mess.

Unlike its predecessors, this film doesn't take place at Amity Island anymore, but in Florida. Michael Brody (Dennis Quaid) works at SeaWorld with his girlfriend Kathryn (Bess Armstrong) where they are currently training the animals, and making any new adjustments to the park before they open for the season. Their boss, Calvin (Louis Gossett Jr.) is obsessed with making the park seem like the greatest park in the world, and is constantly on Michael's back whenever a problem arises. After an employee goes missing, Michael and Kathryn decide to check in the lagoon to see if it was a possibility that the worker drowned, and was carried away by the current. During their investigation though, they are greeted with a great white shark that was trapped in the park. After a debate between Kathryn, and a marine biologist, Phillip (Simon MacCorkindale), it is agreed that they capture the shark so they can be the first park in history to have a live great white in captivity. After a bad decision by Calvin, the shark is put in a tank for the public to view, where it eventually dies. This is when the movie actually feels like a Jaws movie. They eventually find the body that they were searching for, but to their surprise, it doesn't look anything like a drowning. After examining the body, Michael and Kathryn warn Calvin that there is another shark inside the park. Only this one is a lot bigger than the one they captured. After an argument, mommy then makes her appearance by slamming into various underground structures of the park, and destroying one in the process, trapping visitors inside. So what is left to do? Kill the shark of course. Michael, Kathryn and Phillip then set out to finish this once and for all. Not wanting to give away any spoilers (not that you care anyways), it has it's big "climatic" ending similar to the original Jaws. You are then left with a blank stare on your face, questioning what exactly just happened in the last 20 minutes, or even an hour and a half for that matter.

There are many problems with this movie, and while I'm not going to list them all, I will talk about the main ones. The first problem is the special effects. Now since this movie was originally released in 3-D, but later released without them on VHS, everything looks terrible. It looks so bad, that at times some objects look like they were cut out of a cartoon and pasted in the movie. We even get treated to a scene where parts of an underwater vessel start to vanish before our eyes. The shark in this film is big, mean and so obviously fake. Because of the quality of DVD's, the shark looked absolutely terrible in this film when compared to its original version. There were even times when you can see bubbles rising from the shark because there were holes in the mechanical shark's skin. The acting overall, was pretty bad. The only redeeming factor was a fine performance by Louis Gossett Jr. The others seem to have been acted by individuals with no history of acting what so ever.

There are a few pros to this movie though. We get to see the shark eat a man by an extremely entertaining, and original view. The gore is actually pretty impressive considering this is a PG movie. But other than that, it's a downer.

This movie could have been so great. A shark terrorizing SeaWorld seems like a really great concept, but unfortunately, it was executed so poorly. In the end, I would have to give this movie 3-D/10, and that's being generous as I am a Jaws Fanboy.
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