Jamie Kennedy's favorite movie review site
Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
Advertisement

Overall Rating
4.07

Awesome43.33%
Worth A Look: 23.33%
Just Average: 30%
Pretty Crappy: 3.33%
Sucks: 0%

4 reviews, 6 user ratings


Latest Reviews

MFA by Jay Seaver

You Only Live Once by Jay Seaver

November (2017) by Jay Seaver

Friendly Beast by Jay Seaver

Foreigner, The (2017) by Jay Seaver

Tom of Finland by Rob Gonsalves

Happy Death Day by Jay Seaver

78/52: Hitchcock's Shower Scene by Jay Seaver

Death Note: Light Up the New World by Jay Seaver

Brawl in Cell Block 99 by Peter Sobczynski

subscribe to this feed


Eagle vs. Shark
[AllPosters.com] Buy posters from this movie
by brianorndorf

"Fuck "Napoleon Dynamite." Now THIS is a nerdly comedy"
4 stars

It walks, talks, and fails the posture test like “Napoleon Dynamite,” but “Eagle vs. Shark” is no “Napoleon Dynamite.” Possessing more comedic skill and imagination in its pinky than anything the Jon Heder trainwreck of 2004 could come up with in its entirety, “Shark’ is a picture of assuredly twitchy quirks, but remains a consistent pleaser.

Lily (Loren Horsely) is a timid fast food cashier with a crush on Jarrod (Jemaine Clement), a clerk at the local video game store. Hooking up on the night of Jarrod’s animal costume party, the two form a tentative relationship based around Jarrod’s nerdly masculinity. Their romance is put to the test when the duo make a trip to Jarrod’s family home, where he prepares himself to battle an old high school bully, in the process ignoring Lily, who finds herself bonding with Jarrod’s eccentric family.

“Shark” is positively infested with a case of the cutes; either through directorial savvy or plain old Kiwi charm, this cheeky New Zealand import always finds a pathway to some level of endearing satisfaction. Sadly, filmmaker Taika Cohen has his work cut out for him here, as the trail to deadpan irreverence was already used and abused by the aforementioned nightmare known as “Dynamite.”

The two films are frighteningly similar; both embrace the culture of society’s less socially aware, capturing the high school dork phase as it slowly creeps away from being adorable to a place of concern. The features share a love for set decoration minutiae, stuffing the frame with Jarrod’s homemade candle knick-knacks and other intimate character details that will take a hearty DVD pause button workout to fully absorb. “Shark” and “Dynamite” also share a lust for the absurd, no matter the reach.

So what ultimately separates the films? The execution.

“Shark” is a more character-based comedic summer camp, relying heavily on mannered performance and human reveals to extort the jokes. Cohen’s script certainly serves up plenty of manufactured oddity, but I never felt coldly manipulated like I was with “Dynamite.” “Shark” comes from a more earnest place, and uses more to please than just relying on retro visual aids and blank lead actors. “Shark” might be walking in the deep “Dynamite” footsteps, but it’s a gracious picture and infinitely more hilarious.

That appeal is certainly born from Horsely and Clement, who make Lily and Jarrod these curious romantic creatures who have lived in their own isolated worlds for far too long. The performances revel in the idiosyncrasy of Cohen’s buttery writing, but they start to take on a life of their own as time passes and the plot thickens, creating two distinct portraits of frightful eccentricity coated in an unexpectedly humane reading of affection.

It doesn’t take long for “Shark” to assume some Wes Anderson-like moments of whimsy, seen through brief stop-motion animated sequences that splash some film-student color on the proceedings. Even if he’s buried under a mound of bad timing, Cohen has a vision for “Shark” that he maintains with visual eloquence and a wonderful sense of humor all his own. “Shark” is easy to classify, but is impossible to discount on appearance alone; the picture is much too successful for that gloved slap of disrespect.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=15697&reviewer=404
originally posted: 06/15/07 02:25:22
[printer] printer-friendly format  
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2007 Sundance Film Festival For more in the 2007 Sundance Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2007 South By Southwest Film Festival For more in the 2007 South By Southwest Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2007 Portland Film Festival For more in the 2007 Portland Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2007 Florida Film Festival For more in the 2007 Florida Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2007 Philadelphia Film Festival For more in the 2007 Philadelphia Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2007 San Francisco Film Festival For more in the 2007 San Francisco Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2007 Independent Film Festival of Boston For more in the 2007 Independent Film Festival of Boston series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2007 CineVegas Film Festival For more in the 2007 CineVegas Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

5/08/09 Mac Like Nap Dyn, most characters are just unlikeable. Lily's char saves it- plus jemaine 3 stars
5/26/08 daveyt everyone compares to Nap-Dynamite... because it doesn't really have much individually... 2 stars
2/09/08 Samantha P a lot like Nap. Dynamite, but still hilarious! the music is great, Jemaine is too funny! 4 stars
11/08/07 caiphn Horse! 3 stars
9/09/07 Ben Doesn't take itself to seriously, yet seriously is funny and sweet. 5 stars
6/15/07 William Goss Eccentric rom-com that is, yes, like Nap. Dynamite has less humor, heart than it means to. 3 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
Note: Duplicate, 'planted,' or other obviously improper comments
will be deleted at our discretion. So don't bother posting 'em. Thanks!
Your Name:
Your Comments:
Your Location: (state/province/country)
Your Rating:


Discuss this movie in our forum

USA
  15-Jun-2007 (R)
  DVD: 08-Jan-2008

UK
  N/A

Australia
  N/A



[trailer] Trailer


Directed by
  Taika Waititi

Written by
  Taika Waititi

Cast
  Loren Horsley
  Jemaine Clement
  Craig Hall
  Rachel House
  Brian Sergent
  Joel Tobeck



Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
Privacy Policy | | HBS Inc. |   
All data and site design copyright 1997-2017, HBS Entertainment, Inc.
Search for
reviews features movie title writer/director/cast