Thinking about seeing The Meg this weekend? Maybe you have already seen the movie and are itching for more shark films? Here at ScreenGeek, our writers have come up with a few selections for you to feed that Megalodon level appetite. Some of the picks are obvious and some are not so but nonetheless, you’ll have a good time watching these shark movies whether it’s intentional or not. Sit back, throw some chum in the water, and enjoy.
Deep Blue Sea (1999)
Sure, this movie isn’t the best – but it knows it’s not. The effects definitely haven’t aged well, but for its time – it’s entertaining enough, and features quite a few interesting deaths throughout the film and even one now almost iconic scene with Samuel L. Jackson. If you’re looking for a way to pass the time and are interested in a shark movie that isn’t afraid of being Rated-R – this is probably your movie.
Sharktopus is a Syfy original movie that was released in 2010. Directed by Declan O’Brien and produced by Roger Corman, the movie is about a genetically engineered sea creature. A company called Blue Water is commissioned by the Navy to create a half-shark, half-octopus creature to be used in combat. They lose control of the hybrid animal and it goes on a rampage. The creature is eventually stopped when an explosive embedded in its head is detonated.
Sharktopus is low-budget, cheesy and completely absurd but something about it is so watchable. It certainly falls under the ‘so bad it’s funny’ category and if nothing else, it will give you a few laughs. If you don’t get your hybrid sea creature fill from the first movie, worry not, there are two sequels. In 2014’s Sharktopus vs. Pteracudawhere, we see the Sharktopus battle a half-pterosaur, half-barracuda and 2015’s more ambitious and more ridiculous Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf. – Hannah Brown
Open Water (2003)
Open Water is a thriller, loosely based on the true events that happened to couple Tom and Eileen Lonergan, who were stranded in the sea in 1998. Written and directed by Chris Kentis, the story follows an American couple that goes scuba-diving whilst on holiday in the Caribbean. After a mistaken headcount, the crew of the boat leaves without them and so they are stranded in shark-infested waters in the middle of the open ocean. Eventually, realization dawns on the couple that the boat is not returning for them.
Open Water is different from most shark films out there because not a great deal actually happens. Although it lacks a fast pace and action-fuelled attacks, in some ways it is more effectively frightening because of this. The events that unfold make you feel uneasy and the situation they are faced with is realistically terrifying. The film has two sequels: Open Water 2: Adrift and Open Water 3: Cage Dive. Both sequels have a gimmickier vibe than the original, which should’ve been kept as a stand-alone film. – Hannah Brown
Mega Shark Franchise (2009-2015)
2009 saw the birth of the Mega Shark franchise with the release of Mega Shark Vs. Giant Octopus which was mildly entertaining in the same ridiculous way that so many others of its kind are. Then came 2010’s Mega Shark Vs. Crocosaurus which was better than the first. 2014 brought us Mega Shark Vs. Mecha Shark, which is where the series started to get interesting. The megalodon shark is causing a threat to humanity and to combat that, the government creates a robotic copy of the beast, which is an interesting change from the first two movies in the franchise.
Although the first three installments are watchable if you have low expectations and nothing better to do, the fourth movie really makes the Mega Shark series stand out. 2015’s Mega Shark Vs. Colossus features the return of the familiar Megalodon, but this time its competitor is a robot. A giant, badass, Russian robot from the Cold War that has been reawakened. The story is so much more ambitious and outrageous than its predecessors, but in a cheesy, bizarre way it works. There are a lot of absurd shark movies out there, but I would argue that this one could outrank the lot of them. – Hannah Brown
It’s hard to know if Steven Spielberg truly knew how much of a pop culture phenomenon his 1975 classic Jaws was going to be when he first took on the role of director. Forty-three years later, people will still hum that classic theme tune when they come across an expanse of water which is bigger than a puddle. But this in all reality is a badge the film should wear with pride.
The earliest memory I have of the film is at the age of seven, watching it in my nans living room on a Saturday afternoon and being absolutely traumatized of what I saw. It was one of the first times I had seen anything as gruesome as a corpse on television. It often confused me how a film like that could get away with a PG rating at least up until 2012 when it was reclassified as a 12A.
It’s not just the gore that I remember the most. It’s that impending sense of dread that was brought about by the score, the haunting story of the USS Indianapolis from Robert Shaw’s Quint, and the explosive climax that had me on the edge of that old sofa in my nan’s living room. An episode of Family Guy once joked about making a film called ‘Bigger Jaws’ and really, that’s all The Meg is, because you can go bigger, but you’ll never be able to go better. – James Hadden
So. Go ahead and give these a watch – and give us your personal shark movie recommendations below!