Instituions Directed by: Steven Spielberg Produced by: David Brown Richard D. Zanuck Written by Screenplay: Peter Benchley Carl Gottlieb Howard Sackler (uncredited) Novel: Peter Benchley Starring: Roy Scheider Richard Dreyfuss Robert Shaw Lorraine Gary Murray Hamilton Music by: John Williams Cinematography: Bill Butler Editing by: Verna Fields Distributed by: Universal Pictures Release date(s): June 20, 1975 Running time: 124 minutes TV cut: 130 minutes Country: United States Language: English Budget $7 million Gross revenue $470,653,000
Reviews Before people were devoured by CGI, tourists along the New England coast were being eaten by a killer shark. Based on the novel by Peter Benchley, Jaws sees Roy Schneider’s New York cop, Martin Brody, investigating a series of deaths that bear all the hallmarks of a shark attack. After the shark gurgles on little Alex Kintner, his mother sets a small bounty and the idyllic costal resort of Amity Island becomes a frenzy of pitchfork mentality. Brody drafts in Marine Biologist Matt Hooper (played with eccentricity by Richard Dreyfuss) and the two men discover that a Great White has come to feed off their shores. What sets Jaws apart from your average creature feature is an emphasis on suspense while interest is sustained through good characterisation, understated acting and great dialogue. The film also offers an insight into small town dynamics with the whole island gripped by fear, paranoia and greed with town Mayor Larry Vaughn (Murray Hamilton) eager to keep the beaches open for the much needed tourist trade. But when Brody’s own son has a close encounter with the shark, he’s finally given the green light to hunt the thing down. Unfortunately with the whole town’s resources at his disposal, Brody chooses to go to sea with Hooper, the effeminate scientist and Quint (Robert Shaw) a mad fisherman who owns the most rickety piece of shit boat you have ever seen. Why didn’t they just take Hooper’s boat, the one with the steel hull and sonar? And where do they all plan to sleep? Or has Hooper got plans for them 'below decks' ? What then follows is the most inept fishing trip of all time, with Quint trying to reel the shark in with a fishing rod! Now I’m no fishing expert but bearing in mind U.S gun laws and the fact that this thing has killed at least four people, I would have loaded up on Uzis, assault rifles, Elephant Guns, Samurai swords and RPG’s (grenades not Dungeons and Dragons) which would have finished the thing off before breakfast. Instead Quint and the gang dick about with a harpoon and a bunch of barrels (why are you launching them one at a time, just fire all ten at the fucker, better still clip on some C4!) Needless to say their Moby Dick tactics result in Brody going eyeball to eyeball with the Great White in a sinking ship. Fortunately the same shark that has deftly evaded capture for so long suddenly decides to aimlessly swim about instead of sneaking up from below like it had done before. Back to the film, when we finally get to see the shark it’s a real disappointment, it looks mechanical, rubbery and slightly retarded (fooling only pensioners with dodgy tickers at Universal studios). I can’t help thinking that Spielberg should have kept the shark unseen. I think this would have made the film truly timeless. Phil Michaels - http://www.thespinningimage.co.uk/cultfilms/displaycultfilm.asp?reviewid=519
Technology Cinemas The multiplex cinema Is upgrading cinema by bringing up ratings since 1984, now some reckon they will be hitting 200 million. The comfort and other aspects has changed (e.g. the seats) over the last 20 years. The locations of the cinema also plays an important part in how new technology Has increased audience knowledge. There are many cinemas in centre city so Younger people can access it but also there has been more out of town cinemas Built which is good for parking etc. Technology Although the cinema is vital, new technology has increased audience knowledge By emails about the latest films, new releases etc. More and more people watch the Television which could show one of the films out Of a saga. Trailers are becoming more common on television as are posters in magazines which adds to the knowledge of the audience.
Codes/forms and Conventions Simple subtitles with a black background, which could represent the darkness of the sea, music slowly building up. Title appears, white, possibly representing the big white teeth of the shark, Jaws being the title also signifies the teeth as well. The white could be a thriller connotation of the shark being innocent as its in its natural environment and that is what its does. Underwater camera has the impression of the shark swimming As the music increases so does the pace of the swim, this creates tension Swimming through red sea weed, colour is a connotation of danger, blood. Quick shot as the music reaches a very fast pace to a calmer atmosphere and music. Panning of teenagers, drinking, smoking, kissing and playing music. Stereotyping teenagers at this time. Natural light of the fire and moon, adds to natural setting of the beach. Guy sees girl through smoke, this could be a representation of him not thinking clearly as he cannot see her clearly. Wide shot of location of the beach, dunes and sea. In this shot you can see the girl sitting away from everyone, acting as a tease. Panning shot of them both running, adds to her being a tense when he chase her and takes of her clothes to go swimming. Adding humour to the narrative, when he falls over. Ironic as the audience knows something could happen. wide shot of her swimming across the screen in natural light and natural sounds (non digetic music). (Stereotyping again of them doing something stupid). His non diegtic speech shows the watcher how his drinking has made him a character which couldn ’ t help or do anything.
Her arm disappearing and being quiet, gives the watcher a fake idea that she has drowned, but then she reappears in a medium close up. Views from underneath her gives the impression that something is going to get her. Her being in only natural light and in the sea with nothing mat eristic, shows she is in the natural world and not much could save her. Music increases and the shot form underneath gets closer quicker. Non digetic , her screams, thrown around rapidly from side to side, music all adds tension. Comparison from the shot to him laying calmly with the water surrounding him slowly, to the throws of water around her. Her ringing the bells adds a glimpse of hope she could be helped. All the sounds and music adds to the tension and frantic situation. She is then taken underneath the water, water goes calm, shows its all over. Wide shot of the bell carries on ringing like a reminder of what has happened. Fades out from the wide shot of the bell ringing on the sea to day light. Still keeping the natural light. Codes/forms and Conventions (2)
Anotated print screens This shot shows a stereotypical teenager at this time, smoking and drinking. His haircut and clothing is a connotation he comes from a good home but is a average teenage boy. His eye sight shows he is determined to talk to the girl; this is similar to the shark’s determination as well.
This shot is a connotation of danger as the red in the sea weed is a similar colour to blood. The messy seed weed could bit a representation of what a mangled eaten body could look like. The darkness around the centre view shows a deadly creature, which creates suspense throughout the film. The light shining on one thing shows the creatures determination.