The Shallows - Quickie Review

What's good

- Strong performance by Blake Lively
- Simple yet very exciting and intriguing premise
- Beautiful cinematography
- Intense set-piece moments

Blake Lively does great in carrying the majority of the movie.

What's bad

- Dodgy looking CGI
- Only few surprises (due to the trailers having shown too much)

It's definitely good that they don't show the shark too often.


- The shark having a large dead whale to feast on, yet still completely focuses on Blake Lively.

"Whale or Blake? Whale or Blake? Hm...Blake."

The Verdict

Overall, The Shallows does good enough to make it stand strong as probably the best shark movie since Spielberg's original Jaws. Though this doesn't necessarily have to say much since most shark movies are just garbage, The Shallows is a pretty intense and entertaining watching experience nonetheless.
This is mostly thanks to Blake Lively's strong solo performance in the entire movie, which greatly showcases the despair and hopelessness of her situation in a beautifully shot paradisiac location. Lively manages to carry the entire movie without any big problems. However, despite some admittedly great and nailbitingly tense set-piece moments during the movie, in the end, one would've wished that the movie used a bit more of its potential.
Mostly due to the trailers for the movie having shown quite a little too much, the movie lacks enough surprises, since the viewer most likely already saw in the trailers where most of Lively's survival plans are going. Also it doesn't really help that the antagonistic shark in the movie only occasionally looks real, with some sketchy looking CGI occasionally taking the intensity and immersion out of some situations. The gore and wound effects are spot on however.

Nevertheless, The Shallows is a perfectly servicable shark focussed little nailbiter that delivers exactly what you expect from it. While it admittedly isn't as strong of an intense and memorable experience as one would've hoped for, The Shallows still definitely is worth a watch for those who find its premise intriguing enough.

Final Verdict: 6 out of 10

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