Hey folks, Valkor here, tossin some lovin in MediaView; though before the year is through I'll have plenty more offerings to pick at. This next flick, Swamp Shark... yea I'm just gonna come right out and say it, I was very, very impressed with it. Not only is it good for a B-movie, but it definitely ranks high on my list of 2011 favorites.
Swamp Shark starts out with an animal smuggling gone wrong, all masterminded by the town's Sherriff Watson (Robert Davi), who at the bequest of some unknown buyer, has procured a very endangered species that's delivered by tanker truck. Well whatever is inside really wants to get out and the tanker ends up in the swamp with the contents now unleashed and very pissed off.
We switch gears over to the Gator Shack run by Rachel (Kristy Swanson), her brother Jason (Jeff Chase), their youngest sister Krystal (Sophie Sinise), Rachel's boyfriend Tyler (Richard Tanne), and worker Martin (Jason Rogel). All is going well at the shack until one of the locals, Jackson (Harold Evans), decides to stir up some drunken trouble. The local officials, including Sherriff Watson, arrive on the scene to break shit up; they cause a bit of a stir by roughing up Jason, who really didn't do anything, but move on when Rachel says she'll "think" about dating the Sherriff. Well Jackson isn't finished yet as he returns later that evening, attempting to poison the gators that are housed at the shack (they're the side attraction). But instead of killing the gators, he and the gators get eaten. And the only person to somewhat witness the events is Rachel, who catches a large shark fin swim away from the scene of the crime. Of course no one believes her right away, but eventually the group decides to go shark hunting. Joining in the hunt is regular diner Tommy (D.B. Sweeney) but there's more to him than meets the eye.
Oh and did I mention that it's close to the town's "Gator Fest" festival, which not only attracts tourist but some spunky teens lookin for some "action". So you have one pissed off shark that's armored up like a tank chomping at whatever is in its path, horny teenagers too stupid to realize the danger they're in, law officials out on the hunt for the beast, and a group of wanna be shark hunters lookin to get some payback against a beast that ate their gators. Sounds like a recipe for a disaster of a film. Imagine my surprise when it's actually good. And speaking of which… (Spoilers Ahead).
Swamp Shark, surprisingly, is a very good and entertaining film. It originally aired as a SyFy original movie, which automatically makes me turn my nose up at it. Normally SyFy films are the worse kinda awful, but this one… wow… it's quite impressive and I've never had so much fun rooting for the bad guy (the shark). You barely see it until it's about to strike and when it does it's brutal! And as for the people who get eaten… well YOU WANT THEM TO GET EATEN!! Seriously, every person this shark eats pretty much deserves it! Let's start with Jackson, who's just a stupid drunk. You don't care about him! Next is Marcus (Thomas Tah Hyde) and Amber (Ashton Leigh) who decide to paddle out in the middle of the swamp just to have sex because Amber wants "privacy" (the fuck…), a deputy gets eaten because he was being a voyeur and not paying attention around him, and Rachel's boyfriend Tyler gets eaten, which is fine because he's a whiny douche! Awesome! On the acting side, it's great to see Kristy Swanson again; for me I haven't seen her since the original Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and she's still smoking hot! Plus her performance is spot on. D.B. Sweeney as federal wildlife official Tommy (Spawn) is pretty smooth and Robert Davi (Goonies) makes for the perfect corrupt cop. And can I give a PerfectView nod to Sophie Sinise (Gary Sinise's daughter) for walking around in the tiniest shorts? How about Ashton Leigh for being the hottest chick in the film to get eaten? Yes please!! Yes twice! To round things out the film flows at an even pace, the ratio of story to action is well balanced, and everyone looked to be having a great time. I wanna be in Swamp Shark 2. You know it's gonna happen!
Let's start with the "romance" between Martin and Krystal; it shouldn't even exist in the film since they never get together anyway. He doesn't even make a move and when Tommy tells Martin to "seize the moment"… well that moment never comes. Next is the cheesy CGI of the shark, which you never get a close look at it. But when you do, it's quite obvious it's CGI until you get to the really close up bits. Finally, I know this is a SyFy film, but ya think a little nudity could have been tossed in the DVD version of the film? All that barely legal hot ass walkin around and no one getting nekkid?
I'm no racist but:
So the only three black guys, in the entire film, are turned into shark food. Hmmm…
Swamp Shark isn't gonna win any major awards, but you know what? You'd be missing out if you passed on this one because it's one of the best B-movie monster flicks to date that's also very entertaining. Out of TOV 5 stars, I give Swamp Shark 3.5 stars. And it's been Valkor Viewed, TOV Approved.