Deep Blue Sea is probably one of my favorite shark movies. If for nothing else than for a handful of memorable moments and insanely quotable lines. Having gone at least a decade since last seeing this film I was surprised by the high number of talented actors starring in this film. That said, the film does have a couple of holes in it, but nothing that’s out of normal for a sharks attack style of film. What really makes this movie work is Samuel L. Jackson’s speech and in my opinion is the film’s high point.
The film opens with a large shark attacking a boat full of partying college kids, right when the kids are about to be eaten while their boat sinks around them. They get miraculously saved by Carter Blake (Thomas Jane), who harpoons the shark to return it to the secret ocean research station, Aquatica from which it escaped. We then cut to Dr. Susan McCallister (Saffron Burrows) asks for more time to prove that the proteins in shark brains can cure the effects of Alzheimer’s from the company she works for run by Russell Franklin (Samuel L. Jackson). Dr. McCallister convinces Franklin to visit the facility and observe their research first hand over the weekend. Something to which he agrees. After being given the tour, everything goes great. The proteins extracted from the shark from the opening indeed work in the way that was hoped and everything looks on the up and up. That is until the shark wakes up and bites the arm off the lead researcher Jim Whitlock (Stellan Skarsgard). Blake goes to kill the shark, but McCallister releases it back into its holding pen before he gets a chance. The skeleton crew on the Aquatica radio for help, but things get worse as a storm makes retrieval difficult, coupled with the sharks causing the helicopter to crash. This causes massive damage to the facility that starts to flood with water. As it turns out the sharks were genetically altered, illegally so that more protein could be execrated. But has had the side of effect of making the sharks highly intelligent. The surviving crew is now forced to band together to try to reach the surface before Aquatica collapses, or the sharks get them…
The acting from a few of the actors is really top-notch. Most notably are Samuel L. Jackson, who delivers a memorable performance and one of the best rallying speeches I’ve seen in a horror film and LL Cool J, who plays Aquaticas cook Preacher. He’s the character that happens to have the most memorable dialogue and it wouldn’t be half as memorable if it wasn’t for Cool J’s hilariously dark delivery. Thomas Jane also delivers a solid performanc,e but it’s sadly quickly overshadowed by Jackson and Cool J.
The sharks are less impressive as the CGI effects used on them hasn’t aged well. That in addition to the fact the they’re supposed to be more intelligent, but they never seem much smarter than an average shark. Most of the sharks intelligence is conveyed by the characters telling us they’re intelligent. Rather than them acting as such.
The setting for the film works great. The sinking/collapsing ocean research station provides and excellent backdrop. Though is more than a little far-fetched and causes more than a handful scenes that make you stretch your suspension of disbelief. Especially if you have a basic understanding of physics.
Final thoughts, Deep Blue Sea like I said is one of my favorite shark attack films. Hell it might be my favorite. Though, honestly that isn’t saying a lot. Overall it’s a memorable film that’s fun to poke fun at with your friends and is one that shouldn’t be looked too deeply into. If you’re looking for a decent horror film with a bit of action, then yeah I would recommend this. Just don’t expect to get frightened. 8/10