Movie Review: Ice Sharks

Has Seedpeople been dethroned?

Hoo boy.

Before I go any further I’m going to repeat my mantra: Take the movie for what it is, not what I’d like it to be. This is a B-movie. This is a movie about sharks in the arctic.

Briefly, the setting: a research station on the ice somewhere in the arctic. There’s a medium-diverse crew of morons gathered there. Aside from one character being the brother of another and one couple together we don’t get any ideas of how they work together before sharks show up. Also, a whole lot of dogs get eaten right away so keep that in mind if that sort of thing bothers you. It bothers me, but in this case it was so badly done I couldn’t get emotional.

Early on one of the instruments is reporting a reading the scientists don’t like. We get an early sense that they are climate people, which makes sense. However almost immediately they offend my tech-feelings when a reboot of anything takes less than a minute, and then when he says he attempted to flash the memory of the instrument. No!

Without getting into too much boring detail about my day job, we use field instruments on occasion. If the readings are off you would not remotely “flash the memory.” The memory would hold the data. Maybe I misremember, and he said “flash the firmware” or something, but that would be worse. If a science-quality instrument being used for science research might be faulty, it has to be removed from the field and calibrated by experts in a calibration lab appropriate for that instrument (in this case, a thermometer). You don’t just doink around with the configuration.

Now, after our hero runs off in the ice to doink with the configuration in person, another pair go off to play Search and Rescue, which is also a huge No No. These people are obviously not trained in SAR, and watching them play on their snow mobiles as they race toward the area of interest made me actually say “Idiots” out loud. SAR doesn’t fuck around.

None of the acting makes anyone likeable.

At the scene of the possible polar bear attack the one scientist says he has the tissue of two different animals there. “Not human.” He’s examining a pile of gore. Is he a climate guy or a crime scene guy? Because he wasn’t there long enough to determine what the small amount of gore belonged to.

Seriously I hate to be so nit-picky but these people were just so easy to hate on that everything they did made me question the movie.

We get a shark visible on screen a little past eighteen minutes in. Sometime during the half-ass rescue of the lead male I wrote down “this is stupid.”

I’m standing with that. We get a few shark kills, but they aren’t very good and are all very predictable. A lot more stuff happens that takes me out of it even when I remind myself that it is a B-movie. They should have either went way further into the “This is bullshit make-believe” or just asked some folks for some input on how impossible the story-line was. And at every turn the sharks are smarter than the people — which is fine — up until the end when the presence of flares suddenly reminds the sharks they aren’t so clever anyway.

It was a little over ten months ago that I reviewed Seedpeople, and I had a lot of negative things to say about it then. One of those things was that it felt like the story wasn’t enough for the length of the movie: this is the case here as well. The story was stretched beyond belief, and the pacing took a huge blow because of it. A lot of the things that made me think, “this is stupid” also felt like they were just stretching the movie to a full length film. Don’t do that.

Is this movie as bad as Seedpeople?

Yes. Yes, it is.

Report Card:
Running Time: An hour and a half, give or take.
Shark Death Total: Six by shark directly.
Acting: No.
Shark Effects: Pretty good for sharks that can cut through ice with their fins.
Gun Use: Bad.
Gore: Medium gore.
Creepy? No.
Funny? No.
Nudity: No.
Pacing: This movie dragged hard in the middle.

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