Sand Sharks (2011)

Directed by:
Written by: ,
Starring: , ,

Sand Sharks (2011): Out now on DVD

(12) Running time: 86 minutes

Director: Mark Atkins

Writers: Joe Benkis, Cameron Larson

Starring: Brooke Hogan, Corin Nemec, Julie Marie Berman, Christina Corigliano, Vanessa Lee Evigan

Reviewed by: Matt Wavish, official HCF critic

Sand Sharks looks, feels and sounds like something either The Asylum have conjured up, or SyFy have put together, but shockingly, neither of those companies had anything to do with this. Like many that have come before it, Shark Attack 3, Mega Shark VS Giant Octopus etc etc, Sand Sharks is one of those “so bad its brilliant” type films. Taking its influences from all the recent onslaught of b-movies featuring some kind of mutated animal, Sand Sharks plays it for laughs, and thank heavens for that. Had this been played serious, it would have ended up in the bin! This is a bad film, make no mistake, in fact, this is a terrible film and for some reason it is hugely enjoyable. See, these types of films know their audience, throw in a badly CGI’d monster, some annoying yet strangely fun to be around lead characters and lots of bikini’s and we simple folk aint that hard to please, and Sand Sharks does exactly that!

Many people will complain that this movie is terrible, and it is, but take it on face value and once I have explained the plot, you will go into this expecting exactly what you get, absolute nonsense of the ridiculous kind. Firstly, Sand Sharks themselves are plain ludicrous, “swimming” through sand, jumping out of it and allowing their fins to do the best Jaws impression. I mean, come on, Sand Sharks??? The idea is so daft you cannot help but love it. We learn of how these beasts operate in the opening scene as two bikers speed over the sand to some atrocious music and find themselves victim to a predatory shark that likes to jump out of the sand when you least expect it. The police investigate, and come up with all sorts of wild conclusions before calling in Marine Biologist Dr Sandy Powers (Brooke Hogan). Powers is introduced like many of the female characters, by first glimpsing her bikini covered chest, and then the camera pulls back to reveal the rest of her. Granted she is fine to look at, but she aint no marine biologist! Turns out the town had a shark attack a few years back when fifteen people died, and so tensions run high at the prospect of possibly another man eating shark in the waters.

Enter Jimmy Green (Corin Nemec), the son of the Mayor who has just returned to town and he has a plan to save the seaside towns financial problems. He tells his Dad he wants to throw the biggest beach party the town has ever seen, calling it The Sand Man festival and plans move ahead for the party. Students are invited from all over the USA, and now a battle of police and mayor ensues as the police want to close the beaches and the Mayor wants them open. During a heated debate in the town hall, a man called Angus interrupts the discussions and claims that the recent deaths have been caused by Sand Sharks, and that he can catch them for a higher price than advertised. Later on some other chap catches a shark, claiming to have caught the killer… Sounding a little familiar?

Sand Sharks pretty much copies the plot of Jaws and twists it into its own little world, and it would seem this is more applauding Jaws than actually copying it, I hope.  The Sand Sharks are found out, the party goes ahead and mayhem follows! There is not much else to say than that, you will see lots of terrible CGI sharks jumping out of the sand at actors clearly told to either stay still or jump out of the way as the shark is implanted over the top of them. You will see lots of close ups of half naked girls, and the makers find any excuse to show off their good looking cast. One girl at the party even flashes her assets to a shark made out of sand in a bid to get some drug dealers to sell her drugs. The female leads, Brooke Hogan, Julie Marie Berman, Christina Corigliano and Vanessa Lee Evigan are clearly here for their looks, which are flaunted at every chance. The male leads are there to bring the comedy, as they are all dumb as shit, and Corin Nemec as Jimmy Green is sensational. He comes across as Brad Pitt from Fight Club crossed with Jim Carey’s Ace Ventura, and he never fails to bring the laughs. He does have his moments of awful, awful acting mind, especially as everyone starts dying around him.

Then there’s the quotes, and there are tons of them! “Eat this you SAND of a bitch” has to be one of the funniest, stupidest quotes of the year, and they just keep on coming! When organising the party, Jimmy has a heated discussion with the police about sleeping arrangements for the guests, and his rather attractive team member states “who needs beds when you have booze, beach bodies and bands” as she, satisfyingly, strips down to her beach wear! Takings its inspiration from Jaws, come the end of the film they plan to trap the Sharks in sand by blasting them with so much heat the sand turns to glass, thus trapping the sharks (Angus’ idea you know!), and some miserable kill-joy points out the obvious “you’re gonna need a bigger beach Angus!” It is priceless, you couldn’t make this shit up if you tried! To top it all off, we get Jimmy Green dancing around the sand singing “row, row, row your boat” before making a Sand Angel to attract the predators! Now, tell me you aint gonna enjoy this!

Then there’s the mistakes, and the biggest mistake is the pivotal scene for the whole film, the Sand Man festival itself. Thousands of people are coming, and it is confirmed, as we see them walk onto the beach that there are thousands of them! Ha! What we actually have is a group of about twenty people who keep walking past the camera, and once we get to the party, the cameraman cleverly chooses his angles in an effort to cover up the lack of cast members. It kind of works, until the sharks attack and the cast all run frantically around the beach in an effort to save themselves. I saw the same fat, beared, sunburnt white man during every clip, and you can actually see the cast looking for the director to tell them which way to run. It is hysterical, and considering the beach is about a ten second walk from the safety of concrete, these party goers take an eternity to actually get off the beach! If they had all just run in one direction, off the beach as any normal person would, they would have survived. Instead, they run to the sea, then back to the DJ booth, then onto some rocks, back to the sea again, then they stop, scream some more, split off in different directions, meet up, run up the beach, down the beach! Its brilliant, all the while Jimmy Green stands in one place drinking a bottle of whisky telling everyone to “keep on dancin!”

Seriously, Sand Sharks is awful, absolutely bloody awful, but in a very very good way!

Rating: ★★★½☆☆☆☆☆☆

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About Matt Wavish 598 Articles
A keen enthusiast and collector of all horror and extreme films. I can be picky as i like quality in my horror. This doesn't necessarily mean it has to be a classic, but as long as it has something to impress me then i'm a fan. I watch films by the rule that if it doesn't bring out some kind of emotive response then it aint worth watching.

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