Director: Anthony C. Ferrante
Cast: Ian Ziering, Cassie Scerbo, Tara Reid, Frankie Muniz, David Hasselhoff, Ryan Newman
Plot: When the White House is destroyed by yet another storm, Finn (Ziering) suspects that the greatest Sharknado ever is incoming.
Maybe the Sharknado in the movie isn’t the storm we should be discussing. The storm that interests me is the storm that has taken this franchise and propelled it into worldwide fame. Like any storm, it is unpredictable, wild and almost impossible to avoid, unless you have been living under a rock for the last three years. Like it or not, the Sharknado franchise has taken off. What started as yet another silly shark movie has blossomed into this nonsensical trilogy (although I don’t believe that this is the last we’ve seen of this series). People are going crazy over it. It wears its silliness on its sleeve, the joke being reinforced by the dozens of celebrity cameos clambering head over heels to be in this movie. Pay close attention to this entry to spot Jedward, Chris Jericho and even Jerry Springer, who queue up for a second’s screen time, usually followed by a grizzly death via badly animated shark.
But it’s sheer crap. The last two movies were silly fun and even I chortled occasionally. However, here, Sharknado 3 has rocked up bolstered up the support from the fans. The running joke of the third entry is that Sharknado is able to compete with other major franchises. The opening scene sees Ian Ziering fight a legion of sharks side by side with the President of the United States. The tone is bleak and dreary, in between jokes. This storm is the Big One, the One to wipe us all out. You are slightly surprised that they didn’t name this movie The Sharknado Rises. But the truth is whenever we actually get around to the action scenes, they are a load of terrible sight gags, strung together by the imagination of a child. Each set-piece has no control. The writers decide they want to make Orlando’s theme parks the setting of today’s destruction and that is as far as the creative process goes. Every fight sequence is the same with the various heroes firing or chainsawing the air, while CGI sharks are added later, often flying uncontrollably in the background. The deaths are pointless and terrible. Once, the awkwardly bad CGI kills were amusing, but now they are barely worth showing. It is the same melodramatic scream, followed by a badly animated squirt of blood. It almost becomes fun for the viewer to sit back and guess which celebrity cameo was awkward to schedule in, because of the clumsy editing of the death. And everyone bites the bulle…shark. There is no build up to who is going to get eaten next, because if you aren’t in the main cast roster, you’re inevitably going to get chomped. There is no gravitas to each character dying and the heroes hardly recognise it. I suppose it is meant to be visually stimulating, but in truth, it just seems excessive and a little wasteful. If you are going to murder off a character, at least make it memorable, rather than the same joke on repeat.
We’re left with the tattered remains of a plot. Ian Ziering somehow emerges clean out of the other side, his over-the-top action hero a precise parody, rather than an actual bad performance. The same can’t be said for Tara Reid, who can’t even be grateful that she has somehow lucked her way onto a popular franchise and constant work for the next few years. Cassie Scerbo returns, a half decent character in the first one, but now a source of eye candy (I can’t complain – one scene where she emerges from a river did get my heart pumping). Frankie Muniz stars as a wacky technician and David Hasslehoff joins the cast list, allowed to have a punch-up with a shark in space. Don’t ask. It is all a crazy explosion of ideas, which is a shame, because there is potential to be had in this B Movie super-series. If someone was to take it half seriously, I wouldn’t mind be subjected to a silly shark disaster movie every now and again. However, when the film ends with the lead heroes re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere in the belly of a shark, while giving birth, you know it is game over.
Final Verdict: No matter how wild the hype, you can’t hide a garbage film. An uncontrolled CGI mess.