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Anthony C. Ferrante
Alex Arleo, David Bittick, Adrian Bustamante, Diane Chambers, Marcus Choi, John Heard, Chuck Hittinger, Steve Moulton, Tara Reid, Cassie Scerbo, Jaason Simmons
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Cloudy with a Chance of Sharks
Favorite Movie Quote: "I HATE sharks ! I'm from Wisconsin!"
On a routine shark poaching run, the ship encounters a freak water spout. It's a freak of nature because the coast of California rarely gets tornados, and second, and here's the kicker - IT'S FULL OF SHARKS!
The scene switches to the fishing town of Santa Monica, where Fin (cartoon voice actor Ian Ziering), and his associate Nova (Cassie Scerbo) tend his bar, when the shark storm heads inland - right in his bar. Fin becomes concerned for his ex-wife's safety as they live on the beach, and rushes to their rescue, their perennial bar patron and happy drunk George (John Heard - think "Norm!") in tow.
From here on, it's shark-a-palooza, with heavy dose of natural disaster.
SHARKNADO! The very name title has earned it a Flicker Nomination for Most Outrageous movie title. As explained previously, Santa Monica has a unique precipitation problem, and its up to the ex-Marine, ex-husband, ex-father, with family entourage to save the day. The star power for this outing is John Heard, whose career got him involved with WHITE CHICKS, tangled with SNAKE EYES, and abandoned Macaulay Culkin in HOME ALONE 2. Eternal trophy girlfriend and surfer babe Tara Reid, all growed up and is basically the ex-Mrs. Fin and not much else. Alpha Babe Scerbo does a lot of the heavy lifting as the shotgun-toting shark hater - and for good reason.
The story runs fast and furious. Veteran Asylum writer Thunder Levin (AE: APOCALYPSE), along with director Anthony C. Ferrante (HANSEL & GRETEL) take The Asylum's go-to genres - sharks and natural disasters, and make a meal of it! They keep the action to formula, complete with saving a school bus full of children (why-oh-why is there always a school bus full of children whenever disaster strikes? This may be a public service announcement for parents to drive their kids to school - they never make the movies!), a retirement home for veterans, to even out the karma, as well as the usual narrow escapes. The "magic word" for this episode is "Semper paratus," or "always prepared," as Fin (as in shark - get it?) has everything he needs to save the day, including rappelling equipment to save the kiddies.
There was some gratuitous violence (really?) as there victims were attacked in ankle-deep water, while Fin, in the middle of the ocean, waves the beach goers to get out of the water, and for some, too late (those poor surf waders). There were also some winks and nods to 1941, the Adam West BATMAN movie, STAR TREK III: the SEARCH for SPOCK, and the biggest shark movie of all (no, not Mega-Shark!), JAWS. My single complaint comes from a Saturday Night skit, where Christopher Walken admonished Will Ferrell to have "more sharks." Okay - he really didn't say "more sharks," but you know what I mean. The climax is something one would expect from the Asylum, with several WTF scenes that may garner another Flicker nomination.
On my personal rating scale of with '5' being drop everything and see the movie now; if you're female, bear the producers' children and '0' being burn down the theater, murder the movie staff, and violate their dog, this movie earns a '4,' using my Patented Bell Curve for Independent Films. SHARKNADO is as wild as the title suggests, with impossible escapes, creative shark dispatching, and a little family angst thrown in to break up the sharkasbord.
The film is unrated, but has lots of chewy gory scenes, no nudity or sex, and no language. It premiers of Thursday, July 11th on the Syfy Channel. DVR it now, because the DVD won't be available until September. This reviewer is suggesting a SHARKNADO party for Asylum fans, because this will much more enjoyable with audience participation.
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