From this entry on, collaborative films will be separated from the Weird Watching series and provided with their own place. Older posts will be “grandfathered”, applying the additional Tag while keeping their original format. On with the mess!
It was recently my turn to select a movie for the Saturday collaboration and my first plan was to be as sadistic as possible and subject my captive companions in the chunkiest possible cinematic dregs that I could scrape up. Layne and Peter knew this beforehand as they called my bluff, so I dug up Mistress of the Apes which instantly got Layne’s vote but Peter couldn’t get that title over on his end so instead we opted to go with my alternative selection.
I placed Deep Blue Sea so high on my list of considerations because ever since the film’s initial release it has become part of my genetic code. I have watched the movie so many times on cable and disc that it takes up a permanent portion of the synapses in my brain, sharing space with the likes of Starship Troopers, Tremors, and The Princess Bride. I have become so familiar with the dialogue and plot advancement that a sit-through feels like half an hour, so this was going to be both an easy and an enjoyable collaborative riff.
And then I went all Alexander the Great Big Ass and inadvertently took over everything. I was calling things and dropping riff garbage in such rapid, rabid succession that Layne and Peter started up several jokes that ran the course of the movie, including the tease of going onto IMDB and changing all of the production information to my name and calling out things like, “Alex reference #’X’“. Peter would unknowingly get me back though with our collab this week; I write these over a period of days now to allow combing through a big-ass Twitter feed.
Deep Blue Sea 
Direction by: Renny Harlin
Story and Screenplay: by Duncan Kennedy, Donna Powers & Wayne Powers
Featuring: Thomas Jane, Saffron Burrows & Samuel L. Jackson
Production: Village Roadshow Pictures
Major Threats: Genetically-engineered sharks, pissing into the wind, Big Water
So once our potatoes are all synced the movie opens with a somewhat surprising bait-and-switch. Some horny young folks are out in a boat when something huge starts ramming them (I only just realized what I have just typed as I typed it. I regret nothing.), dumping their wine, a teddy bear, and then several of them into the sea. The teddy bear tragically drowns but just when their attacker, an immense shark, has turned around and starts making a beeline for the inebriated swimmers, two loud BANGs herald their savior, Carter, our shark wrangler, who stops the shark in its wake with two small harpoons tied off to his boat.
Meanwhile, in the world of the corporate shark, Dr. Susan McAlester has some explaining to do when the drug firm financing her research into using shark enzymes as a catalyst for treating Alzheimer’s Disease. They want results and her team has yet to bring them something they find satisfactory so they intend to send her back with one of their representatives, Russell Franklin, so that he can observe first-hand how the project is advancing.
Now I’m not going to worry about spoilers of any kind in this entry because this movie was a meme before the internet even took off. “Russell Franklin” is played by Samuel L. Jackson. He has a whole backstory involving a bunch of people dying on a mountain and not a word of it matters. Every human being alive, even infants born the day after this movie was released, knows what happens to Samuel L. Jackson in this movie:
So now that we’ve gotten that out of our systems, the two take a digitally-rendered plane to Aquatica, a re-purposed Naval facility outfitted with a high-tech lab and enclosures to house the sharks, “Two first and one second-generation.” Makos are already fairly imposing animals but these things are beasts, and they need to be in order to super-sized in order to produce enough of the enzyme for extraction and testing. That involves getting one of the huge animals tranquilized and onto a lift system that brings it up into a tank within the main lab so that a needle can be inserted into its brain to get at the enzymes.
This procedure would have gone without a hitch if Dr. Piss-in-the-Wind wouldn’t continue to do ill-advised things, like smoke in an enclosed lab next to a super-predator. That ends up costing him an arm and when the Coast Guard helicopter (For whatever reason the producers decided this had to be an actual helicopter.) arrives for an emergency evacuation, it ends up costing the team most of the surface level of Aquatica, the main lab, and a growing number of halls, elevator shafts, and rooms when the sharks use both the ‘copter and the Doc’s stretcher to bust things wide open and gain entry into the facility. Preacher (L L Cooljay) already had an obnoxious parrot to deal here and now there are sharks hunting him; what’s a chef to do?
DEEPEST, BLUEST, MY HAT IS LIKE A SHARK’S FIN-
Damn, sorry, that happens to me every time Cooljay gets introduced or appears onscreen since he performed the movies end-credits theme, which sounds like somebody in production just said, “I don’t understand the first thing about movies or science fiction, just rap the plot of the movie everyone will have just watched.” So we have intelligent sharks running amuck and eating people, flimsy or just plain false science going on, and a facility refurbished specifically to house and work with genetically-engineered giant sharks that has no equipment in place to treat potential shark bites. Put that all together and you’ll discover that it’s definitely not better down where it’s wetter.
Hammerhead Layne: As far as Shark Films… Rating: 6/10
Port Jackson Peter: Not bad enough to be so bad it’s good. Not good enough to be good. Bit harsh, sorry fishes! Rating: 5/10
Megamouth Alex: Dumb science, dumb scientists, big dumb explosions, big “dumb” sharks. Average by the standards of its time and still average today when the typical shark movie now rates a 1 or less. Deep Blue Sea isn’t perfect and it doesn’t try to be. It makes you eat popcorn. Rating: 5/10
Collaborative Average Score: 5.5/10 [Mid-shelf Chum]