The Shallows was a movie I did not expect to see when I woke up tuesday morning, my girlfriend and I were all ready to see either The Purge or Central Intelligence, it was by a last minute decision we decided to just go ahead and see The Shallows instead. Neither of us had seen the trailer for it, nor did we read up on it before. All we knew about it was it about a girl and a shark(We were surprised to see that there was also a pigeon!). The shallows is basically a Potara earring fusion between Shark Week and 127 Hours, starring Blake Lively. People going into it expecting it to be similar to Jaws will be disappointed, but people who are a fan of survival movies most likely won’t be.
The Shallows follows Nancy, a medical student who recently lost her mother to cancer. Wanting to escape the world, Nancy ventures to mexico, where she intends to surf on the same unnamed beach her mother once did. She soon realizes her mistake of swimming alone when she is face to face with a great white shark, with no other options she swims to a giant rock 200 yards away from the shore. With the threat of a rising tide and a great white shark circling her, she must find a way to fight for her life and swim to safety.
Because the film only has one primary character, we learn about Nancys character and struggles through a series of phone calls and instagram posts. Its an easy way to introduce us to the protagonist and for the most part it works. We learn everything we want to know about Nancy before the films main set piece happens.
What the movies falters from however is a dragged on story in some aspects. At times it feels like some scenes can go on for a little too long, even after the viewer understands the magnitude of what has happened. This results in a rushed ending. \
The film is entertaining and keeps you on the edge of your seat. What made the story scary was that it was a situation that always felt like it could actually happen to someone. The mix of Nancys medical and surf knowledge is a key aspect of this film and it is intertwined well. You constantly feel like Nancy is in danger and it forces you to be attentive. For a movie with one very small setting, it still finds a way to feel large.
Like every movie review, here is my Pros and Cons List:
- Great Cinematography
- Cool communication based character development
- Shark looks great
- Stellar Music
- Blake Lively’s performance
- Dragged on segments which lead to rushed ending
- Some cheesy dialogue
- Instances where you could see stunt double surfing
If you liked 127 hours and await Shark Week every year, you will love this movie. Blake Lively gives a marvelous performance and tells a story of woman trying to prove to herself and the world that she is a fighter. If you are in for an survival-adventure, this is the most for you this summer.
Final Score: 74%