When an evil nun summons the devil to possess a great white shark lurking in the lake near a small fishing village, she brings hell down on the residents. The shark’s bite passes demonic possession on to a beautiful young woman who goes on a killing spree spurred on by the prince of darkness himself.
I love low budget exploitation films and Shark Exorcist fits that description to a T. To me, there’s something about the artistry that goes into creating a film for little to no money that makes the result all the more enjoyable. I feel like you get more of an uncompromised look at what the creators wanted to put together. I would rather see low budget practical effects, trick photography, and questionable CG than any watered down Hollywood bullshit.
I honestly don’t usually like CGI unless it is actually needed. For example, films like The Unseen needed CGI to make bits and pieces of homeboy’s face and body disappear and Shark Exorcist needed CGI to create the demonic lake-dwelling man eater. I mean, if you can find a shark with glowing eyes in the wild that will perform for the camera it’s probably possessed for real and I’d advise leaving it the fuck alone. To top it off, it’s done well enough that I questioned if it was footage of an actual shark once or twice. Besides, all the important stuff (read: blood, barf, and badass shark teeth) is all practical, as it should be.
The story in Shark Exorcist is original and entertaining as all hell. So often, you sit down to a movie and by the end of the first act you’ve got it all figured out because you’ve seen the story retold a million times in about twelve different ways; only once have I seen this story play out. This goes double for the signs of possession. Most times, when someone gets possessed in a movie they just ponce about misquoting the Bible and making shit levitate. In this flick, when Ali gets possessed she sprouts teeth, turns into a sexy predator, and just wants to be in the water; she’s kind of like a demonic siren but instead of a song she has a tiny bikini. She also barfs on a priest which, sure, we’ve all seen before but that never fails to entertain me. Say what you will about this movie but you’ve never seen one like it before.
As an added bonus, this movie was shot on location right here in the great state of Tennessee and was directed by local exploitation filmmaking legend Donald Farmer. I’m not going to say that the budget never shows or that it’s some Oscar-worthy piece of cinema. I will, however, say that this film is exactly what you expect it to be. Honestly, it’s everything I wanted it to be. For those of us who can appreciate truly independent horror and want to support local filmmakers, this is definitely one to check out.
All in all, would I recommend this movie? You bet your last bowl of shark fin soup I would! Like I said, it gives you sharks, demons, scantily clad women, and murderous nuns. What more can you ask for? You can buy or rent this flick on Amazon right now and it is more than worth the price of admission.