After reading about the deep sea “monster” captured on camera by an oil rig this week (footage included at the bottom of the article), my attention turned to all of the ocean based horror films out there – most of which are actually pretty bad. There’s a surprising amount of them and so many of them are pretty much just Jaws rip-offs.
They also tend to suffer from poor pacing, as though the ocean has lulled the writer, director and editor asleep in some regard. But not all of them are bad! So today I figured I’d celebrate the ones that actually work – the ones that entertain even if they’re not flat out classics.
Head below for The 5 Best Ocean Based Horror Movies!!!
This movie might not hold up all that well today (I haven’t watching it in almost 10 years so I wouldn’t know) given the familiarity of today’s audience with the found footage aesthetic and the scare-a-minute expectations increasingly expected of it. Of course, Open Water isn’t really found footage – neither of the two main characters are filming – but it embraced the documentary aesthetic in order to effectively unnerve the audience. In doing so, it was one of the first films in that style since Blair Witch to make a mainstream impact.
While not as great as Jaws by any stretch of the imagination, Jaws 2 manages to skirt by on our familiarity and fondness for the original film’s characters and titular creature. It’s a pleasure to see Chief Brody back in action and the groovy 1978 vibe makes the film seem almost exotically stately by today’s standards. The film’s last act is actually somewhat interesting with this kids’ sailboat expedition. On top of that, the kills are decent for a PG film and the shark actually manages to go out in a fairly cool way as well.
This taut little thriller from Australian director Phillip Noyce is perpetually underrated. Starring Nicole Kidman, Sam Neill and Billy Zane, it makes great use of the ocean – using its vastness to isolate our protagonists. The performances are great, with Billy Zane in perfect effete sleazeball mode and Nicole Kidman in a turn that should have made her a star a year before Days Of Thunder. Highly recommended if you haven’t seen it.
I’m not sure where the debate came from regarding if this movie is “good” or not. Of course it’s good! How is this silly, gory lark anything other than a good time?! How is it not entertaining?! It has some of the best ocean based kills in history and perhaps the single best “post inspirational monologue” kill of all time. LL Cool J’s title song is the icing on the cake.
What else could it be? There’s nothing I can say here that hasn’t been said before – it’s one of the best movies of all time. Period. It will never be unseated and will probably never move from the top of this particular list.