Welcome to this blog of my film reviews. Some have been drafted carefully on paper, others I have sat and typed. I'm going to make it clear right now that I don't expect you to agree with my (re)views, or to like my style of writing. However, I want my views to be just out there and open, as a person who wishes to express himself from deep within. Feel free to comment and debate with me, but I do ask that you are civil and not harsh, as any comments which are basically swear words and insults will automatically be deleted. Also any text that is in orange (and often bold) is a Hyperlink to either a source, or a previous post for background reference.

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Shark Tale


Fed up of being a loser, young fish Oscar (Will Smith) can't believe his luck when a Great White (Michael Imperioli) is killed only inches away from him. Taking credit for the Shark's demise, Oscar becomes rich, famous and known as the "Shark Slayer". But things are about to get a whole lot worse when Oscar learns the Shark he "killed" was the eldest son of Mafia boss, Don Lino (Robert De Niro).

Before Shark Tale DreamWorks had had straight hits when it came to Computer Animated Features, with Antz (1998), Shrek (2001) and Shrek 2 (2004). Shark Tale, however, is their first in a long line of misses. The animation is very good, there's no denying that. It's nowhere close to the standard of Finding Nemo (2003) when it comes to animation, but it makes the undersea life very colourful and eye-catching. The characters, although the screenplay makes them very one-sided and underdeveloped, are an enjoyable bunch with some good gags, and it is so enjoyable to see the voices of major film names such as Will Smith, Jack Black, Robert De Niro, Renee Zellweger, Martin Scorsese and Angelina Jolie coming out the mouths of computer animated sea creatures. Plus casting Doug E. Doug and Ziggy Marley as a pair of moronic Jamaican Jellyfish is so funny to watch and listen to.

On the downside there is such an artificial feel to it. The magic of Finding Nemo was that it showed fish in their natural habitat, doing what they do best, but in Shark Tale it is a case of them living in a human world, but with a fishy spin to it, and there is no magic to it. The screenplay tries to make fish-human world gags that aren't well written, and the thought of fish living exactly like humans, but swimming everywhere instead of walking just feels so fake and artificial, and too much like an attempt to copy SpongeBob SquarePants (1999-). This and the cheesy screenplay with barely any character development are what stops this film from being hit, but it is still a good film to keep the kids entertained with.

Will Smith, Jack Black, Robert De Niro, Renee Zellweger, Martin Scorsese, Angelina Jolie, Doug E. Doug, Ziggy Marley, Michael Imperioli, Vincent Pastore, Peter Falk, David P. Smith, Fiona Phillips, David Soren, Bobb'e J. Thompson, Kamali Minter, Emily Lyon Segan.

Oscar nomination: Best Animated Feature (Bill Damaschke).

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