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Jaws - Review.

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JAWS Jaws is a stunning yet petrifying film movie or rather a blockbuster directed by the brilliant Steven Spielberg. The scene is Amity Island, a cosy coastal community dependent on tourist dollars during the summer months, year is 1975, favourite holiday destination, and the time is summer, just before the 4th of July holiday, time for the proud Americans to celebrate their national Independence day. This is time for the Americans to celebrate and enjoy themselves at the beaches and with summer approaching the beaches being occupied in large numbers. The movie is based on three men being brought down to the level of a real-cold blooded killer while keeping perspective upon their essential humanity. The story is about a ferocious and cold-blooded shark that is responsible for the lives of innocent young lives that are purely there to have some fun. Setting the movie in binary opposition creates more drama and anxiety for the audience as the scenes are set in a really pleasurable and cheerful environment, this creates dramatic effect to the movie, and watching small kids who are having innocent fun being brutally killed creates more tension than having bad people being murdered. Music is always an essential part of this film; it is used to create different moods. ...read more.


The story has been constructed in different ways to build up tension and fear. The director has set out the first two attacks close together to cause immediate effects on the movie, showing the audience that anything can happen while the shark is around and it can happen unpredictably so be warned! Although, the first attack is quite a shock and tragedy for the local people and chief police officer Brody, the mayor decides to keep the beach open at all costs. Unfortunately, when a little child's life is taken right in front of his mother, the movie takes an emotional turn also showing the shark holds no mercy for anyone, even little vulnerable children. Putting the two attacks close together causes real tension and fear of the shark and its capability. This makes the audience sympathise for the victims sincerely. Quint, a marine biologist also a shark specialist is one of the three men who will get to stare at death in their face as they try to destroy Amity's unwelcome guest, also a fisherman called Hooper offers to come and reel in the beast at a cost although he doesn't realise what he has stumbled himself into. Overlapping dialogue, such that the audience often get the gist of what's been said without being able to separate the words, proves wonderfully realistic as it creates an intense amount of pressure. ...read more.


First, they have a camera angle from Quint's view, showing what he is looking at. From nowhere, as he reaches to what he was swimming down to look at, he sees a dead man! The dead man looks like the shark has also attacked him at sea as well; he is pale and looks frozen and hard as a brick wall. They also use an extreme close up to concentrate on the mans face. This was the scariest moment in the film, as it seemed as if nothing would happen but unexpectedly they show the dead man; just as the audience is relaxed and calm, it makes the audience jump right out of their seats! Jaws is one of the best films ever made. It's the reason why many people still will not swim in the ocean and barely go in past their knees. Although that doesn't stop them from watching it, but it shows how effective a film this is. The director uses some impressive techniques to employ the horror and scare without being needlessly violent like most films are today. The best technique in the film is how the director is able to invoke horror and bloodshed without really showing all that he could. You don't even get to see the size of the fish until near the end of the film. yet there are enough scares and thrills scattered throughout to keep the audience on the edge of their seats. ...read more.

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Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

3 star(s)

This is a detailed and often very insightful analysis, and in spite of the essayist's insistence on anthropomorphising the shark by judging its actions as though it were human, the analysis itself is often quite excellent. The attention to detail is impressive, as is the clarity of the account of how tension is created by the use of narrative devices like false alarms and red herrings, or by innovative camerawork and a cleverly contrapuntal soundtrack.

Considering its focus, the essay would be much improved by a little research into cultural theory that introduces critical debates about the cultural construction of "the everyday" and "the uncanny", and a slightly more complex grasp of the theory of narrative binarisms. This is not usually part of the A level Media Studies curriculum, however, and so the grade given here does not take account of this area for improvement.

3 stars

Marked by teacher Govinda Dickman 23/10/2013

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