Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Santa Jaws (2018) - 'Tis the Season

Streaming Services: Amazon Prime Video, FuboTV, Hoopla, DirecTV, Syfy
Movie Name/Year: Santa Jaws (2018)
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Length: 88 minutes
Rating: TV-PG
Production/Distribution: Active Entertainment, Syfy
Director: Misty Talley
Writer: Jake Kiernan
Actors: Reid Miller, Courtney Lauren Cummings, Jim Klock, Carrie Lazar, Arthur Marroquin, Miles Doleac, Haviland Stillwell, Hawn Tran, Scott Allen Perry, Ritchie Montgomery, Lindsey Michelle, Creek Wilson, Sherri Eakin, Dylan Westfall, Danny Cosmo
Blurb from IMDb: Trying to survive the family Christmas, Cody makes a wish to be alone, which ends up backfiring when a shark manifests and kills his entire family.

Selina’s Point of View:
This was bound to make an appearance on Trust the Dice eventually. The only reason it didn’t happen sooner is because I didn’t know about it before a couple of months ago. I figured it would be a great movie to watch in December to break up the rom-com monotony. Of course, I also figured it would be a super-typical creature feature.
It was not.
Santa Jaws is what you get when you take a corny, live-action, Disney Channel movie and give it to a creative team that specializes in creature features and Christmas movies. Then, just have it produced by Syfy.
It really took me by surprise. It had everything I loved from all the genres it meshed together. The teen main character took charge and learned a lesson. Family was shown as important and came together. The creature in question was ridiculous and the script was hilarious in a so-bad-it’s-good kind of way.

I really just enjoyed it a lot more than I should have.
I hunkered down for some serious Asylum bullshit and wound up with a charming B-movie creature flick.
I had a great time.
Santa Jaws knew what it was and leaned into it. It never tried to make the audience buy any more than it had to offer. It’s not deep, it’s not reinventing the wheel, and it’s not going to be pulling in any of the high-class, stick-up-their-ass, critics. It will, however, be shown during all my holiday marathons.
Also, “Ho ho ho, you son of a fish!” is right up there with “Meow, Bitch!” – from Zombie Apocalypse (2011) – as one of my favorite lines from a B-movie ever.

Cat’s Point of View:
When you have a movie title like Santa Jaws, it almost guarantees groans and eye-rolls. You just know it’s going to be a B-movie, and quite possibly bad. The question always remains, however, whether or not it falls into the ‘so bad it’s good’ category or the dreaded ‘simply awful.’
To be honest, Santa Jaws fell somewhere in the middle for me. It’s bad. You really can’t get around that. It does have a few redeeming qualities, though.
I’ll start with the positives.
This won’t necessarily be everyone’s cup of tea, but I’m a lover of puns and dad jokes.This movie is loaded with them from opening credits to final scene. Zingers such as “you better watch out, you better not die,” are par for the course in this holiday horror-comedy.
Another item in my plus column is the special effects. Let me be clear that it’s the shark I’m talking about. Some of the practical effects, such as props, were absolutely abysmal – such as weapons that were clearly plastic. Santa Jaws, herself, was actually fairly well rendered.

There’s a decently thought-out story behind the red-hat-wearing beast and the way it targets one specific family amongst its opportunistic chomping. That element of the 1975 movie, this film’s namesake, is clear.
I start running out of things to appreciate, however. I can’t really praise the acting – though, some may have been doing the best they could within the parameters of the direction and writing. Everything was fairly predictable along the ‘adults are dumb, so it’s up to us kids’ recipe, as well.
Now don’t get me wrong – while this movie definitely won’t be an award contender, it’s actually the perfect bit of mind-numbing fluff for this year’s Holiday Season. There’s too much serious stuff going on right now, and most of us are in need of some relaxing escapism more than ever.
If you could set aside the things that make this movie absolutely horrible, and focus on the lighter elements of this dark tale, then this movie might actually be an enjoyable experience. Besides, if you’re sick of Hallmark rom-coms and all the saccharine smarmy productions that flood screens and TV channels this time of year, this is a decent selection to provide a welcome intermission.
If horrible holiday puns and cringe-worthy family interaction makes you want to flip tables, however, then maybe go fishing for a good title elsewhere.

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – None
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 56%
Metascore – None
Metacritic User Score – None
IMDB Score – 3.8/10
Trust the Dice: Selina’s Rating4/5
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating2/5
Movie Trailer:

No comments:

Post a Comment