Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Happy Birthday, "Jaws"

On June 20, 1975, the movie Jaws was released. I actually saw this movie in the theaters. I remember it being a spur of the moment decision by my folks after looking through the newspaper on a lazy summer evening. "Let's go see Jaws," my mom said.

I was 5.

Loved it.

It's simply a great, great movie. Was there ever a better casting decision than Robert Shaw as Quint? And, historically speaking, this is widely considered to be the first summer blockbuster. It screened so well with preview audiences that it was released to many more theaters than originally planned.

It was also the first movie to gross over $100 million, and was the highest grossing movie of all time until Star Wars was released two years later.

Part of what makes the movie so exciting is what director Steven Spielberg decides not to show us. Suspense is heightened by the music and sound you hear, plus the sparse amount of time that you actually see the shark.

Of course the reason the shark was on screen so infrequently was because the mechanical sharks created for the production of the movie rarely worked, and in some cases, sunk to the bottom of the sea because they were rendered useless by all of the salt water.

Hey, sometimes it's better to be lucky than good.

Some fun Jaws related clips...

Who knew that the Jaws theme had words?

Jaws, recut as a gay love story

Holy Sharkbite, Batman!

Monkeys never fail to bring the laughs

Robert Shaw gives chills in a scene that he helped write

Ron "Jaws" Jaworski hands off to Wilbert Montgomery for a 42 yard touchdown run in the 1980 NFC Championship Game. Couldn't resist.

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