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The Shallows

Updated on July 7, 2016
Stevennix2001 profile image

Steven Escareno is an amateur film critic who writes about movies in his spare time.

See, this is why I never go to the beach.
See, this is why I never go to the beach.

The Shallows

Director: Jaume Collet-Serra

Writer: Anthony Jaswinski

Cast: Blake Lively, Óscar Jaenada, Angelo Jose, Lozano Corzo, Jose Manual, Trujillo Salas, Brett Cullen, Sedona Legge, Pablo Calva, Diego Espejel, Janelle Bailey, Ava Dean, Chelsea Moody, Sully Seagull

Synopsis: A mere 200 yards from shore, surfer Nancy is attacked by a great white shark, with her short journey to safety becoming the ultimate contest of wills.

MPAA Rating: Rated PG - 13 for bloody images, intense sequences of peril, and brief strong language

Eh what can I say?.  These pictures of Blake Lively spoke to me for um...artistic reasons.  Yeah..that's it.
Eh what can I say?. These pictures of Blake Lively spoke to me for um...artistic reasons. Yeah..that's it.

Stevennix2001's Rating:

7 / 10


  • Great cinematography shots, as it really helps set up the scope and intensity of the situation that Blake's character finds herself in.
  • Editing was pretty good, as the movie flowed at a great pace
  • Direction was pretty solid for the most part
  • Blake Lively's performance was great
  • Visual effects are great


  • The movie is pretty much one of those by the numbers "shark" attack films, which makes the entire story very predictable


A young woman loses her mother, so she goes off to a secluded beach to surf. However, this is no ordinary beach, as it happens to be the same one that her mother used to go surfing, after she found out she was pregnant with her.

However, she swims out two hundred yards from shore. A huge white shark shows up that causes her to seek shelter on one of the rocks in the middle of the ocean. With little time left before the high tide comes in, she must find a way to make it back to shore before she gets killed.

I guess you could say it's kind of like "Jaws." Oh screw it. Of course, It's essentially another "Jaws" type movie, where a great white shark is killing people, or maiming them at least.

While not quite the masterpiece that "Jaws" was, "The Shallows" is nice a entertaining horror story about one woman's survival against a shark that's trying to kill her.

Of course, with the film's basic premise, there's really not a lot to analyze about "The Shallows." The movie is pretty much straight forward for the most part, as it heavily relies on Blake Lively's acting performance to carry it.

And for the most part, she does. Granted, she's no Meryl Streep, but her performance was pretty good. And whenever she's forced to deal with the shark during her various swim sequences, you genuinely get a sense that she's actually in danger. This also goes to how well Jaume Collet-Serra did directing this movie, as everything from Blake's performance to how each scene was setup was pretty spot on.

I loved some of the underwater camera angles this movie used, in order to portray some of the more dramatic parts of the story. Plus, some of the wide angled shots to emphasize the distance from her and the shore really helped amplify the intensity of her situation. The editing for the most part flowed smoothly, as the film moved at a great pace. Never feeling too dragged out, nor did it ever feel too short either.

However, I guess this movie's biggest knock against it is the fact that it's basically a "Jaws" knock off. It's not a bad thing per se because there's really not much you can do with the premise of a killer shark, when you think about it. It's the same problem with exorcism films. The reason why most of them generally suck is because it's hard to make one that doesn't come off as a cheap knock off of "The Exorcist." Here, it's kind of the same deal.

Sure, it's basically a by the numbers cliche shark attack film, but it's still fun to watch. Sure, it doesn't give you any of the epic setup and story telling of "Jaws", but it's a decent popcorn flick if you're into fairly cheesy B-Movie style horror films. And if you are, then it's worth a look once it comes out on Netflix, but I wouldn't bother seeing it in a theater though.

© 2016 Stevennix2001


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