‘3 miles offshore… and a great white in-between!’
Shark Season is a 2020 American action horror feature film about a great white shark that relentlessly stalks three kayakers out on a remote island. As they wait for help to arrive, the tide starts to rise, forcing them back into the deadly waters. Now the race is on as shark threatens to pick them off on the way back to the mainland…
Directed by Jared Cohn (Fast and Fierce: Death Race; Alien Predator; Halloween Pussy Trap Kill! Kill!; Devil’s Domain; Hold Your Breath) from a screenplay written by Mark Atkins (6-Headed Shark Attack; Empire of the Sharks; Planet of the Sharks; Sand Sharks; et al).
The Asylum production stars Michael Madsen (Megalodon; CobraGator; Lumberjack Man; Piranhaconda; Species; et al), Paige McGarvin (American Psychos TV series; End of the World), Juliana Destefano (American Psychos TV series; Porn Soup TV series) and Jack Pearson (Fast and Fierce: Death Race).
Sharknado franchise director Anthony C. Ferrante is credited as a second unit director. Horror genre director James Cullen Bressack (Blood Craft; Pernicious; Blood Lake; To Jennifer) is credited as the movie’s social media coordinator.
Review [may contain spoilers]:
Who doesn’t love a suspenseful shark film? And when it features Michael Madsen, I am all in!
Young Sarah (Paige McGarvin) is an aspiring model and ready to set out on another island photoshoot with her ex-boyfriend Jason (Jack Pearson) and new make-up artist, Meghan (Juliana DeStefano). While overprotective dad (Michael Madsen) reminds his daughter to be careful and keep in touch with him along the way, the gloomy anniversary of Sarah’s mother is haunting her as she tries to keep her chin up.
Jason, the extroverted photographer, is hyped to introduce a new and isolated location for the day’s shoot – a rock formation located three miles from the usual island they have utilised in the past. Without much hesitation, the three ambitious friends hop into kayaks to travel several hours into the ocean for this spectacular site structure.
Alongside the sheer stupidity of paddling a kayak into uncharted territory within a three-hour time span, we are treated to ill-prepared millennials who are not only amateurs but clearly unguarded. Dolphins are seen frolicking nearby and provide a sense of hope that this will be an affirmation of all good things to follow. Could they be any more disconnected?
Sarah’s early flightiness turns into immediate warrior mode when a territorial shark follows and makes its attack on the kayakers.
The realisation that they are trapped on a large pillar, miles away from land while the tide rolls in quickly, has quickly turned Meghan’s brain to mush as she crumbles into accepting her fate as shark chum. Where did her previous fierceness go?
Both girls pull it together, apprehensively trekking back into the water in hopes of reaching the island before the shark strikes again. What to do? Discuss their love lives of course! In a strange and almost unbelievable discussion about Jason’s love interest, the story gets back on track with the same suspense from which it began. Whew! Saved by the shark.
Madsen, although a bit disengaging and forcibly empathetic to his daughter’s plight, eventually pulls it together with some urgency that was originally expected. It’s as if he was never oblivious to Sarah’s ditziness and has come to heroically jump in with all his contacts lined up to locate the girls. One huge negative comes from the coast guard’s constant monotone reporting as if he were reading lines directly from a textbook. Completely void of any sensitivity or determination, he reveals all his information to dad as if he were speaking to a United Nations forum. Luckily, Madsen’s resolve to save his daughter knows no bounds as he researches the area and conveys all his findings to the right resources. Go, dad!
Shark Season is nothing new to bloodthirsty shark fans but it’s still a thrilling trip into the great big blue without knowing the predators still stalking beneath the waters. Make sure you have a working cell phone out there!
Meredith Brown, MOVIES and MANIA
“Yes, we all saw this before when it was called The Shallows. And some of us saw it before that as Malibu Shark Attack. We didn’t need another version. Especially not one this inept. The script is by Mark Atkins, best known for films like 6 Headed Shark Attack, Sand Sharks and Monster Island. Unlike them, Shark Season tries to be a serious horror film. It’s just tedious with dialogue as bad as the CGI.” Voices from the Balcony
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Sarah (Paige McGarvin) [shouting at the shark]: “What do you want!?”
Shark Season is available On-Demand via Amazon.com
Cast and characters:
Michael Madsen … James
Paige McGarvin … Sarah
Juliana Destefano … Meghan
Jack Pearson … Jason
Lauren E. Hubbard … Paddleboard Girl
Nick Ryan … Darin
Josh Lovejoy … Boat Rescuer 1
Ben Gelera … Boat Rescuer 2
Eric Goldsmith … Helicopter Pilot
Christian Frazier … Jet Skier
Pinellas County, Florida