You cannot expect this list to feature anything except Jaws at number one. That was a given.
All these years on, Steven Spielberg's adventure thriller remains timeless, exciting and entertaining. The shark still looks kinda fake, but there's genuine tension here, and the shark attacks are incredibly vicious for a PG movie...
I've championed this movie ever since I first saw it, and I still believe it to be an incredible movie and far above the quality of those shitty made-for-TV schlock-fests. There's tension aplenty, it's well-paced, and the shark effects are the most convincing that I've ever seen, mainly because real sharks were used. It doesn't always work, but it's effective enough to stand out from the herd.
It's so relieving to see another good contemporary shark movie, one which actually had proper funding and studio involvement behind it. This isn't another shitty B-grade shark flick, but a skilfully-crafted thriller with terrific shark effects and a wonderful leading lady in Blake Lively. And it looks beautiful to boot. It does get a bit too Hollywood towards the end, but it's still a lot of fun.
I'm pretty much grasping at straws by this stage in my list. The Reef and Jaws are the only good shark movies from a conventional filmmaking perspective, so it's time to dig into the "cheesy but fun" venture. My favourite such endeavour is Renny Harlin's 1999 shark thriller, which remains every bit as enjoyable and fun as it was back when it first hit cinemas. The mechanical sharks are the most convincing I've ever seen, and the CGI sharks alternate between incredibly phoney and somewhat competent.
This is a fun ride, and there's plenty of shark action to devour here.
The only Jaws sequel with any merit, this second instalment in the franchise is decent but unspectacular. The mechanical sharks look fake as hell, but there are some decent directorial flourishes here, and some set-pieces are pretty damn cool. It's fun for a rainy Saturday evening, but it's not great.