Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Episode 22: "Jaws"

"Jaws" is a movie that requires very little introduction so instead we'll focus on the rockin' viewing party we threw this time around.

This summer I took three of my buddies down to the Texas coast for a deep sea fishing expedition. It's a trip I've made a couple dozen times over the years but the first for my friends. Company and shenanigans excluded, it was easily the worst trip I've been on. The boat was overcrowded, the water was seriously rough, the fish weren't biting, and my friend Daniel spent the entire trip, um, chumming the water so to speak. And then our luck changed dramatically when, within a span of 30 minutes, Jason and I both hooked and reeled in sharks. Like I said, I've been on a bunch of these trips and never caught anything bigger or more exotic than a red snapper. I cannot begin to describe the fight that a 42 inch thresher shark can put up nor the adrenaline that the fight induced. I immediately went and started a bar room brawl because I was so jacked up. It was one of the coolest moments of my life and something I will brag about at every opportunity until I no longer have friends to brag to.

When I told Lindsey about my owning of the sea, her mind immediately went to the awesome party we (see: "she") could throw wherein we would start the night off with Shark Week (yes, this was months ago), eat the shark I caught, and finish up with a showing of the incomparable "Jaws." We termed it the "Shark, Shark, and Shark" party because, really, what else would we call it? And so our friends gathered for the Shark, Shark, and Shark party and good times were had by all (even Daniel who we mocked mercilessly all night over his puking).

Anyway, "Jaws" is my favorite thriller/scary/horror movie of all time. The tension is palpable throughout, the action sequences are top notch for its time, and the characters are absolutely perfect. Seriously, they're perfect. In fact, Chief Brody (Roy Scheider), Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss), and especially Quint (Robert Shaw) would all make my "Favorite Characters" list were I to make one. Here's the thing: there's more than a hint of cheesiness to "Jaws" (especially when watching it 35 years after it debuted). If these actors don't completely NAIL their roles and bring humanity and even realism to the table, this movie doesn't hold up near as well as it does. How Shaw wasn't nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his work here is beyond me. Maybe more importantly, this is one of the rare scary movies that can actually freak you out. Not frighten or gross you out the way a horror movie does but literally mess with your life. I am openly terrified of sharks to the point that I will not willingly step into the ocean and that illogical fear is due in large part to the abject horror "Jaws" brought into my life. I can only imagine how messed up I would be if I'd seen this movie in a theater. On top of all that, "Jaws" launched the career of a struggling young director named Steven Spielberg who's done alright for himself. And when you know the back story of this movie's SERIOUSLY troubled production (definitely worth a Google search), it's an amazing achievement in film. A.

Best Character: Sam Quint
As I mentioned, all three of the main characters are excellent but dude, Quin is a-mazing. Perfect.

Best Scene: Who has the better scar?
After a rough day chasing the giant shark from hell, the crew gets drunk and start comparing scars, leading to the hauntingly unforgettable moment in which Quint describes his experience as a survivor of the USS Indiana. This is not only one of the best scenes in film history, it also shed some light on a horrible yet important event from World War II that not a lot of people knew about at the time.

Best Line: Chief Brody's, "You're gonna need a bigger boat" is too easy. I've always enjoyed:
Quint - "Back home we got a taxidermy man. He gonna have a heart attack when he see what I brung him."

Did I say I caught a shark?

"Jaws" through Lindsey's eyes:

I've always had the desire to see "Jaws" but just never got around to it.  Finally, a movie on the list that I'm actually excited about!  Man oh man, when Brian caught that shark, I got REALLY pumped.  If you know me, you know I love hosting themed parties.  Well folks, no one could ever top this theme.  I mean seriously, the stars aligned for all of these events to happen.  I think the only party theme that could even come close, is my "What About Ka-Bob?" Party that I've been planning in my head.  Oh how I love "What About Bob?" AND kabobs. It would be awesome, right?

So WHO KNEW that the guy from "Sea Quest" was famous before "Sea Quest"?!  I sure didn't!  I thought "Sea Quest" was his one-hit wonder.  I was super pumped to see Young Sea Quest Guy.  Sadly, his skin looked super old and leathery back then as well.  When are these people going to discover skin cancer and actually take care of their skin?

Well speaking of "What About Bob?", WHO KNEW that the guy from "What About Bob?" was famous before "What About Bob?!"  I sure didn't!  I thought "What About Bob?" made Richard Dreyfuss' career!  I was totally shocked that he was in this film and that he apparently is super arrogant.

So WHO KNEW that the annoying girl from "The Bachelor" was famous before her engagement to Jake Pavelka on "The Bachelor"?  I sure didn't! I had no idea that Vienna was able to time-travel back to play the wife of Sea Quest Guy on this movie.

Well folks, apparently the technology used to time travel and create a "Jaws" shark just amazed me.  I wasn't even aware that this kind of world existed.  "Jaws" sure brought great suspense and a great party into my life.  I will ALWAYS remember my first "Jaws" experience.  I will never watch this movie again, unless I'm eating a shark.

I think I only screamed 3 times,

1 comment:

  1. What About Ka-Bob. Brill.
    I want to see how the meal goes at THAT party.