Dinoshark is the kind of title that really sells a film. Like other Syfy/Roger Corman offerings of late, the title tells you all you need to know, and if it doesn’t convince you that it’s worth a look, well, then, perhaps the film isn’t for you.
The story is a simple one. The melting of the polar ice caps releases the titular Dinoshark. Freed from its icy prison, it soon sets off on a rampage, first by devouring a researcher in Alaska, but obviously, deciding that it had had enough of the cold climate, it decides to head to the Mexican town of Puerto Vallerta, which attracts those looking for boating and beach holidays. When a high number of people are attacked, it’s up to Trace McGraw (Eric Balfour), Carol Brubaker (Iva Hasperger) and Dr Frank Reeves (Roger Corman in a cameo role) to find the origin of the creature and a way to stop it.
On the face of it, Eric Balfour is an actor who seems to be drawn to bad films like flies are drawn to shit, but he’s comfortably the best actor here. Granted, that’s not saying much, as I’m not sure that most of the people here are acting, or are aware of what acting is.
Perhaps the best example of bad acting here is displayed by the water polo team. In the couple of scenes in which they feature, they set a new standard of awfulness. However, you don’t go into a film like this for Oscar-worthy performances, do you? You go in expecting some crazy shark action, and well, there’s a bit of that.
The kills are fairly run of the mill, but a couple are quite hilarious and make the film worth watching. It’s incredible, the versatility of the shark. Not only can it swim in extremely shallow waters, it can also leap fifty feet in the air. It is, indeed, a truly special beast.
Like Sharktopus, this film’s setting seems like little more than an excuse to have lots of scantily clad ladies running about the place and to be devoured by our prehistoric predator. Even in scenes where it’s completely unnecessary and, indeed, illogical to have people wearing very little, the film somehow manages to find a way.
Without spoiling too much, there’s a scene where one of the ladies is doing some research online about the beast. The scene is full of dramatic music, and as the tension builds, she discovers what they’re up against. So, what does she do when she discovesr the origin of the beast, I hear you ask? Well, she removes her top, of course.
Now, I’m no expert on such things, not being a lady, and I have never been faced with finding out information on a crazy shark devouring the locals, but I can’t imagine that my first reaction would be to remove my shirt. Although, I might give it a try after completing reviews from now on.
Dinoshark is a film with numerous faults. The plot is obviously derivative, the effects are shoddy, there’s some dodgy dialogue and the acting ranges from shocking to average. But still, despite all of these faults, somehow the film manages to be quite entertaining. It’s by no means a masterpiece, and I am not encouraging you all to rush out and buy it, but it has a certain charm and clearly knows what kind of film it is, and fully embraces it making it well worth catching when it appears on Syfy.
No doubt some variation of this formula won’t be too far off for Corman and Syfy, so, no doubt, you can expect to see another review on this site in the not too distant future. Part of me really wants them to explore the killer shrimp of Grafham Water, but I’d imagine that Dinoshark 2 or perhaps Roboshark is more likely.
Dinoshark is out now and available from the Den Of Geek Store.