First Day of Summer Review: Jaws (1975)

It’s the first day of summer, and what better way to celebrate than with a cinematic classic all about sun and fun. Here’s a corker from the re-watch pile…
Jaws (1975)

My unfortunately damaged cover of the bluray of Jaws

Film: Realistically, I shouldn’t have to write anything in this part of the review, because you’ve all seen Jaws. All I should have to write is ‘it’s Jaws, it’s good’.

If you haven’t seen Jaws, you need to go and see it. Now. Sure it’s not my favourite film in the world, but it’s an important film, it’s a well made film, it’s a well cast film. It’s fun, it’s horrifying, and if you live in Australia on the coast, it’s perpetually topical!   

I first saw Jaws on the big screen as a very young kid: God only knows what my parents were thinking, but i was both in awe of it, and scared to death by it. Actually, I have Jaws to thank for introducing me to ‘the shower’ because after I saw it, I didn’t want to be immersed in water again… even though I carried around a rubber shark for months afterwards, and that shark shared every shower with me!

Jaws was directed by legendary director Steven Spielberg, based on a novel, by Peter Benchley, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Carl Gottlieb.

Jaws: Roy Scheider as Chief Brody

So for those who haven’t seen it (which I have just discovered includes my wife!!!) here’s a brief synopsis: Amity Island is a beautiful, sleepy town which in summer is invaded by tourists who enjoy its beaches and sunny disposition.

This year, though, is different, as Police Chief Brady (Roy Scheider) finds his normally peaceful existence invaded by a shark… but not just any shark, a gigantic, hungry great white shark, which is killing again and again. He enlists the help of a marine biologist, Matt Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss) and an old shark hunter, Quint (Robert Shaw) to hunt the shark, but will all of them survive?
I can’t really criticise the film as it’s probably a perfect monster movie, even though it’s not one of my favourites (which is why I have only given it 4 stars), but it’s certainly a must watch, especially in this beautifully restored edition.

Score: ****

The Australian bluray menu of Jaws

Format: This Australian bluray release of Jaws runs for about 2 hours and 4 minutes and is presented in a beautifully restored widescreen 2.35:1 visual with a spectacular DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 audio track. Possibly the best film restoration I’ve seen to date.

Score: *****

Extras: Extras, extras, extras? Boy oh boy, do we have extras!!

First, there’s a bunch of deleted scenes and outtakes that are interesting, but really don’t add much to the film and it is better off without them.

The Making of Jaws is a spectacular, 2 hour mainly retrospective documentary that really, if you have any questions about how this film was made or the origins of the story, they’ll be answered here!

Jaws: the iconic opening sequence

The Shark is Still Working: The Impact and Legacy of Jaws is a series of ten small fan-made featurettes, exclusive to this bluray release, that are a passionate look at the making and perpetuity of the film. 
Jaws: the Restoration looks at how Jaws was restored for this bluray release and the 100th anniversary of Universal Pictures. As a fan of cinema, this is a pretty interesting watch.

From the Vaults is a look at the making of Jaws, but made in the 70s with some great archival footage.

Jaws Archives has 4 series of still galleries celebrating the making and international marketing of the film. Normally I’m not a huge fan of still galleries but this shows a hell of a lot of the posters and Day bills for the advertising of the movie, so it gets a pass.

Last, but not least, we have the original theatrical trailer for the film.

This edition also comes with a digital copy of the film.

Score: *****

WISIA: Its not just one of the greatest Monster movies ever made, it’s one of the best movies ever made, everyone should watch it multiple times!

Jaws: a little underwater head

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