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Featured Movie Reviews

The Shallows


THE SHALLOWS could be describing the area of water where most of this film takes place, or the depth of its screenplay with equal accuracy, but damned if this isn't still an entertaining little thriller.

The beautiful Blake Lively stars as Nancy, a young med student devastated by the recent loss of her mother to cancer, ready to walk away from her medical career and escaping as the film opens to a remote beach deep in Mexico for some private surfing.

The beach she is seeking was her Mom's favorite surfing spot in the world. Nancy's looking for closure and escape in equal measure.

The friend she traveled with is suffering a hangover so Nancy heads out into the water on her own in the most ill advised dip since Chrissie took that midnight beach swim to open JAWS.

Soon, a huge predatory great white makes an appearance and displays a single minded focus in chowing down on our heroine.

Lively is pretty good. She's not good enough to overcome some PAINFULLY bad dialogue, but Director Jaume Collet-Serra (Unknown, Orphan) has a strong sense of visual style and does his best to elevate the material with some really interesting camera work. Every text or Instagram appears on screen, avoiding those boring scenes of folks looking at screens.

Lively is flawlessly beautiful in the opening scenes, making her battered, bitten and bloody transformation to shark attack victim a lot more harrowing.

The special effects are excellent. Our killer shark is every bit as believable as that giant tiger in "The Life of Pi" and a whole lot more persistent.

If Spielberg had these CGI tools when making JAWS, I can't even imaging how good that film would have looked.

The shark attacks are intense, well constructed and suspenseful.

At only 86 minutes long, its a fast, lightweight ride.

THE SHALLOWS has plenty of bite and gets a fun, popcorn thriller B.

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