The Shallows Reviews
Blake Lively starrer can seem repetitive, and a little pointless in the talk that Nancy has going with the seagull and later with a camera.
Itâ€™s a magnificently crafted film, tightly paced, impeccably cut, with tense direction, just enough drama to anchor it all, and a livewire of a Blake Lively performance to keep it afloat when it threatens to get swept under the current.
Okay, Collet-Serra has taken a few liberties (read: many gratuitous close-ups of Lively's pert posterior) here but all said and done, this is without a doubt the actress' most daring and challenging role to date. Blake Lively, take a bow. You rock.
I cannot emphasise enough how beautiful (and dangerous) this film and its leading lady look. In fact, I'll go out on a limb and rocky waters to say this: give Blake a standalone superhero movie already. God knows, she deserves it. Dive headlong into this one, killer sharks, notwithstanding. But hey, Jaws, it ain't!
The Shallows is a taut thriller. It also features some stunning cinematography and slow motion surfing sequences. Director Jaume Collet-Serra has steadily improved over the years making action thrillers with Liam Neeson. But with The Shallows heâ€™s definitely made the best film of his career.
You should watch this film, but you can walk in twenty minutes late for an even better experience, unless of course you dig endless shots of a bikini lady surfing in slow mo.
For a survival thriller film, thereâ€™s plenty of action and drama in the movie. If you like watching Blake Lively on screen, enjoy doing that for 86 minutes straight. Her perfectly toned body is an added perk.Â
Despite several flaws, The Shallows is still a thrilling experience thanks to a few high-tension moments and Blake Livelyâ€˜s fantastic performance. Though not in league as Jaws, this can still qualify as the second best entry in films where shark plays an antagonist (though I admit my guilt of having enjoyed watching Deep Blue Sea more than thisâ€¦ My bad!).
The Shallows fails to invent new things for itself in the third act. It becomes predictable, falling on easy survival movie devices like recording on a video camera, or the fact that Nancy, being a medical student, is able to tend to her wounds. But it is a well-crafted film that engages for the most of its 1.5 hours of running time.
For its part, The Shallowsâ€™ antagonist is an efficient CGI-created shark, not scary by itself but, like any horror film, what itâ€™s capable of. In this case, its ability to rip a human in half, which it does in one gory instance. But the film is not just about a shark attack, itâ€™s about fighting till the end no matter what and â€” clichÃ©d as it sounds â€” overcoming the odds.
Your breath will be hitched for the most part. I'm not saying that The Shallows is as good as Jaws - the Steven Spielberg film was a masterpiece and it doesn't seem likely that it will ever be toppled from its No.1 position.
Audience Reviews for The Shallows
The Shallows, a film by Jaume Collet-Serra, is the gripping tale of an adventurous surfing going wrong. This 86 minutes long film makes you witness the survival thriller of a female getting trapped in the sea. Attacked by a shark and injured severely, and many challenges in front of her, be it high tide, and stranded there with no one for her rescue, how she survives and fights back and saves herself in spite of not even knowing the name of the beach forms the story. It is indeed a treat to watch Blake Lively essaying the role of the protagonist. Although, we have witnessed such types of survival thrillers in the past, some inspired from real life incidents and some fictional. The themes and situations might have been different and intensity also might have varied, be it The Edge, The Grey, 127 hours, Alive, Frozen, Gravity, The snow walker, Rescue Dawn, The Revenant, Sanctum etc. We have seen our very own Suraj Sharma giving excellent performance in Life of Pi. The Shallows is not very intense like previously mentioned films, but it would keep you hooked on to the screen. The Shallows captures the life-or-death experience of the protagonist, pitted against seemingly insurmountable odds, her efforts to find the feasible resources to survive against an implacable enemy â€“ shark.
The film begins with a young boy playing with a soccer ball in a beach. He finds an action camera attached to a helmet, he gets astonished to see the video of a man struggling to come out of water but ultimately getting killed by a shark.
Frames move further to tell us the story behind the video captured in the action camera. A medical student Nancy Adams (Blake Lively) travels to an isolated beach in Mexico to surf. She wanted to go there, since her mother (who is no more) had surfed there many years ago and this is where she had discovered that she was pregnant with Nancy. Carlos (Oscar Jaenada), a local guy, drives her down to the beach. Carlos refuses to divulge the name of the beach to Nancy in spite of her frequently asking him. He just says that it is a paradise. Once Nancy reaches there, she just loves the beach and gets ready to surf. She finds two men also surfing. After a quick break and video chat with her sister Chloe (Sedona Legge) and father (Brett Cullen), she dives back to surf. While heading back to the shore, a shark hits her surf board, making her fall. As she tries to get back on the surfing board, the shark bites her leg very badly.
Then begins her fight for survival. How does she handle her injuries? What resources she use to stop the bleeding from her leg? Who comes for her rescue ? How does she handle the high tide ? What all challenges come in front of Nancy ?
Surfing scenes are breathtaking. Also, certain fights which Nancy puts up for her survival will keep you glued to the screen. Blake Lively as the protagonist has indeed given a great performance.
â€˜The Shallowsâ€™ captures the life-or-death experience of the protagonist Nancy Adams portrayed by Blake Lively, pitted against seemingly insurmountable odds, her efforts to find the feasible resources to survive against an implacable enemy â€“ shark. Although we have seen many intense survival thrillers than this in the past, watch this crisp and tight piece as well.