Movie Review: Jaws (1975)


It is time. I told you guys a while back that I would be reviewing every movie in this series this summer to celebrate 40 years of shark-based terror. So, without further interruptions… let’s go hunt us a shark.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Jaws!”

Welcome to Amity, New York, a real summer holiday town! It looks pleasant, like somewhere you would go with your family for some summertime fun. But that would get slightly changed when a young woman is killed by a giant killer shark. So it will be up to a police chief (Roy Scheider), an oceanographer (Richard Dreyfuss) and a crazy fisherman (Robert Shaw) to go out there and stop it. And that makes for a really interesting plot. Everything about the story works; the pacing, the build-up(s), the suspenseful moments… everything. But the plot gets to it’s absolute peak in the second half when they decide to go out in a boat and hunt down the shark. The sense of isolation and suspense is absolutely perfect in these scenes. And that is when the suspense of the plot really kicks into gear. To be honest, every part of the plot works fantastically.

The characters in this movie are fleshed out, well-written and really entertaining. Roy Scheider is perfect as this polie chief who doesn’t want any more people to die. Richard Dreyfuss is great as this oceanographer who wants to study the shark and of course help stop the killings. And Robert Shaw as Quint… the man, the myth, the legend. He is just straight up manliness at it’s finest. Such a badass who is also a bit of a crazy person sometimes. All of the characters are great in some way.

The score for this movie was done by none other than John Williams himself. And the score helps build the suspense of this movie perfectly. It isn’t like “BWAAAAH” all the time but much rather goes on the down low and starts building more and more until it can finally emerge from the water and “BAM!” in your face. And no, it doesn’t always build up to a “BAM!” but it does help hold the suspense perfectly. And it is just overall a great score that I enjoy listening to every now and then.

This movie when it was being made was going through some production problems. And by some I mean basically all the production problems possible. They were over the deadline, they were over budget, the mechanical shark broke down at all possible times, basicalyl everything that could go wrong went wrong. But they managed to get through it and it looks like it turned out well. Anyway, this was directed by the one and only Steven Spielberg and he did a fantastic job. Since he couldn’t use the mechanical shark at all times he came up with hte excellent idea to take the camera under the water as to portray the point of view of the shark when it had targeted something. And that obviously worked to the movie’s advantage. Overall this movie really well-directed with great camera work at all times. Also, here is a fun fact for you: The mechanical shark was named Bruce, after Spielberg’s lawyer.

This movie has been really well-received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 97% positive rating with a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 79/100. Roger Ebert gave the movie 4/4 stars and put it in his “Great Movies” list. And on it got a score of 8,1/10 and is ranked #207 on the “Top 250” list. The movie also won 3 Oscars in the categories of Best sound, Best Film Editing and Best Original Score. It was also nominated for 1 Oscar in the category of Best Picture. 

“Jaws” is a movie with an excellent and suspenseful plot, fantastic characters and performances, an excellent and suspenseful score, fantastic direction and one of the best endings of all time. Time for my final score. Dun DUN, dun DUN, dun dun dun dun dun dun dun dun dun DU-DU- DUUUUN! My final score for “Jaws” is a 9,90/10. It definitely gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

“Jaws” is at last reviewed.

Farewell and adieu to you fair Spanish ladies, farewell and adieu you ladies of Spain…