With a blood thirsty shark circling, a surfer is left stranded on a rock with little hope of getting back to shore in this short and sharp thriller. Director Jaume Collet-Serra is never subtle and struggles to keep the film from veering into ridiculousness, but manages to load it all with white knuckled tension from the very beginning. He also has a brilliant Blake Lively leading the way in an athletic and imposing performance, spending much of the film with no cast to work with but an awesomely named seagull Steven. Lively saves the film from Collet-Serra’s frustratingly over the top tendencies, making The Shallows simple but effective B-grade excitement.


3 Stars

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