Mackenzie Rosman - Ava Conte
Dave Randolph-Mayhem Davis - Blaise Shaw
Sloane Coe - Cicely
Jaren Mitchell - Cameron
Richard Moll - Finch
Lucky Johnson - Mayor Glen
Tim Taylor - Deputy Hendricks
Genre - Horror/Thriller/Bad Animals/Supernatural/Sharks/Ghosts
Running Time - 95 Minutes
Some father and daughter fishing team are having a contest for cash. However, a great white shark bites the prize fish in half before it's reeled in. Obviously, the father and daughter team are upset by this and decide to shoot the shark with a crossbow. Then after dumping hot sauce over the shark, the daughter tosses a grenade into the shark's mouth. The shark survives the grenade, making its way to a cave where it dies. However, the cave seems to have supernatural properties that bring the shark to life - as a ghost! Now pissed off and able to survive within any form of water, the shark plans on dishing revenge on those who murdered it and the town nearby.
GHOST SHARK is the latest SyFy feature that unfortunately had to follow up one of Summer's biggest pop culture phenomenons, SHARKNADO. And while it doesn't even come close to the epicness of SHARKNADO, GHOST SHARK is still a pretty entertaining time for the most part.
- Screenplay: When you sit down and watch a movie called GHOST SHARK, you're not really preparing yourself to dive into the screenwriting of said piece. After all, you're not expecting award winning writing for a movie that's basically about the spirit of a vengeful ghost shark attacking stupid characters in a variety of ways. The writing is pretty silly and mediocre. The characters are all stereotypical without much of a personality. The only real thing the script has going for it is when the shark randomly pops up to murder people from different water areas. And while those scenes are entertaining as hell, it's the scenes where there needs to be drama, exposition, and character development that suffer.
I'm not going to totally tear GHOST SHARK apart for having an extremely cliche B-movie killer shark script. But it would be nice if the storytelling rose above that somewhat. Add in a twist to change the predictable script into something more memorable. Give the main characters a bit of depth, so we can believe that this situation is a threat to their survival. Watching most of these characters have fun at a pool party hours after one of their best friends is murdered by this ghost shark isn't believable in any sort of sense. It's like that moment in SLAUGHTER HIGH, where the girlfriend [whose boyfriend exploded after that can of beer] chooses between grieving or taking a bath. Guess which one she chose? I have no sympathy for characters like that! Make the situation surreal, while keeping the characters somewhat in reality. It's not too hard.
Hell, two of the main characters' dad is murdered by this shark in the opening scene. Yet, they seem indifferent to his death, even though they want to stop the shark. Why should I care about their goal if they don't properly react to their motivation? And even as people died around them, they barely felt bad. Maybe this shark was doing the right thing in getting revenge on this town after all!
As for the explanation of why the shark was turned into a ghost to begin with - it's just a muddled mess. I guess the cave has history with magic or voodoo or something. And one of the characters doesn't want the cave to be destroyed [which would destroy the shark] because his wife died and doesn't want to lose her again - or some shit like that. I didn't really care enough about the characters to really pay attention. I just wanted to see this Ghost Shark do some damage.
GHOST SHARK doesn't have a terrible script. But besides what's done with the shark [the only real highlights of the film, story-wise], it's pretty much been-there-done-that-executed-better. But I've seen worse storytelling in my time.
Direction: The direction by Griff Furst is probably the highlight of the story. While the visuals won't set the world on fire, at least Furst seems competent enough to visualize a silly piece of fluff into something memorable and entertaining. The picture quality is what you would expect out of a SyFy feature, which is pretty decent. The pacing was good - that tends to happen when characters don't react to much around them. I thought the special effect for the ghost shark was actually not that bad. It looked silly, but I was glad it was silly. It stood out and made me laugh. And the violent moments had style and were shot well. I thought Furst did a commendable job with a dumb flick. I honestly had no issue with the visual presentation for what it was.
Acting: The acting, however, wasn't the greatest in the world. Some actors were way over-the-top. Some actors went to the same school as Kristen Stewart. I wasn't expecting great acting in a film called GHOST SHARK, but it could have been better!
Most of the actors were pretty bland, but some stood out more than others. Mackenzie Rosman, who played the youngest daughter on 7th Heaven, did nothing for me as Ava. While she grew up into a hot looking woman, her acting is only a step above Kristen Stewart's. Rosman doesn't really emote as much as you'd want her to, pretty much having a serious face the entire runtime. At least have fun with your role!
Lucky Johnson, as Mayor Glen, was the total opposite. He was so over-the-top in his performance, that he actually annoyed me. It also didn't help that Mayor Glen was probably the most unlikeable character in the film. I wanted the shark to eat this guy the moment he opened his mouth. I wasn't convinced by his performance, even by B-movie standards.
The best actor, by default, was probably Night Court's Richard Moll. He was hammy at times, but at least he showed some passion in his role as crazy guy Finch. At least someone in the film was enjoying himself.
GHOST SHARK is a pretty violent film, using a lot of CGI brutality that will probably make you chuckle. This Ghost Shark really enjoys munching on living folk. The shark usually favors chomping someone right in half, where only the bottom half is uneaten. Also, we get decapitations and chewed off limbs. The coolest violent moment was when some dude drank a cup of water [which the Ghost Shark had mysteriously entered] and the shark rips the dude open in half. Even a few children get killed by this shark! Just a lot of CGI bloodshed and brutality by this one dead shark. Highly entertaining stuff.
Other than hot girls in bikinis and some shirtless dudes, not much sex going on here.
While nowhere near the level of SHARKNADO, GHOST SHARK does have really bizarre moments that only made me enjoy the film probably more than I had wanted to. Not only does this shark have the ability to travel within the ocean, but it can travel through any water source. If you're swimming in a pool, that shark could come out of nowhere and eat you. Have a busted pipe? Expect to be sucked through it by the shark. Car wash? Better wear your best bikini because you're gonna die in it. Watch out for that shark mouth while you slip and slide. And not even an umbrella will save you from the rainy weather, as the shark will rain down on you and swallow you whole. And don't bother drinking that cup of water. That shark will just rip you into two. All these moments had me laughing throughout the film. Extremely silly and highly illogical, but fun times nevertheless.
THINGS I'VE LEARNED WHILE GETTING SUCKED THROUGH A TOILET
- A fisherman and his daughter murdered a great white shark for killing a prize winning fish that was worth $30,000. Maybe Lil' Kim should consider the same with her plastic surgeon.
- The token overweight guy got eaten in a swimming pool by the Ghost Shark. He really is The Biggest Loser!
- A plumber got sucked through a kitchen sink pipe by the Ghost Shark. Too bad the Princess is in another castle.
- A little kid got eaten by the Ghost Shark will on a slip-and-slide. Man, that's a slick way to end someone.
- Cicely was attacked by the Ghost Shark while relaxing in her bathtub. Freddy Krueger saw that and said, "Bitch, been there and done that!"
- Some dude got ripped in half by the Ghost Shark after drinking from the water cooler. Montezuma's Revenge - DAMN!
- The Ghost Shark enjoyed munching on the Deputy. It's true - everyone does love bacon.
- The Ghost Shark really wanted a piece of Ava. After seeing how hot she grew up to be, that shark must have been in 7th Heaven!
THE FINAL HOWL
While no SHARKNADO, GHOST SHARK still managed to be a fun time whenever the title character would make its presence. The violence was way over the top, which made the film a lot more entertaining. The direction wasn't that bad. And the film had enough moments that will remain memorable until the next B-movie shark film is released. What other movie can give you a man being ripped in half just by drinking a cup of water that possesses the spirit of a dead, vengeful shark? Too bad the drama wasn't there and the acting was deader than the shark. Still, GHOST SHARK entertained me for the most part and that's all I really wanted from this film. So a mild success, I guess.