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Reviewed by: Ammon Gilbert

Directed by: Kevin ONeill.

Eric Balfour
Iva Hasperger
Aarón Díaz
Humberto Busto

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What's it about
A prehistoric shark finds itself thawed out and hungry off the coast of Puerta Vallarta, Mexico. A tourist-trap boat captain and a scientist / girls polo coach catches wind of the dino/shark hybrid after it munches a couple of their friends and they do what they can to stop it.
Is it good movie?
Over the last few years, SyFy Original Movies have made a name for themselves in the monster movie genre. With recent Asylum gems like MEGA SHARK VS GIANT OCTOPUS and MEGA PIRANHA, the network’s monster movies have seemed to spawn a whole new level of interest from fans across the board—not that they’re super quality monster / effects movies, but more in the fact that they’re so bad they’re good. They know what they are and they don’t try to be anything but, usually with ample amounts of monster death and cheesy lines. With Asylum’s success, the original schlockmeister Roger Corman decided to jump back into the game with DINOSHARK, a monster movie about a half dinosaur half shark. But is it the epic SyFy monster movie it had the potential of being? No… no it wasn’t.

For them to work properly, these type of movies need to balance out the cheesy bad acting and sappy dialog with ample amounts of action, effects, death, gore, and kills. And while DINOSHARK offers a number of fun sequences featuring said Dinoshark jumping out of the air and eating people, parasailors, boats, and more people, it treads too much on been-there, done-that territory. And not because we’ve seen this all before in other SyFy originals but that we’ve seen it all before in DINOSHARK! The same set-ups, camera angles, and special effects are used in just about every Dinoshark kill throughout the entire movie to the point where the kills and the Dinoshark action gets repetitive and boring. And boring is the one thing you don’t want to find in a monster movie like this.

But what about the cheese level? Eric Balfour does his thing and is easily the best actor in this movie, giving a solid performance that you’d expect from Eric Balfour—no more, no less. Everyone else, however, are pretty awful in terms of their acting abilities and delivery of dialog. The biggest offenders going to Iva Hasperger, who plays the scientist / girl’s polo coach / love interest, a chick who’s very smart and yet very stupid all at the same time (and is hot… but not ridiculously hot), and … well, just about everyone else, I guess. Either the acting is shoddy or it’s too over-the-top, but whatever it is, it’s never spot on. And it’s never so bad it’s good, it’s mostly just so bad that it’s practically unbearable to watch.

And that’s where the movie fails the most: it’s boring. No bigger offender for a movie like this than to have it be boring. At 90 minutes, there shouldn’t be any wasted time, and yet the majority of the movie is wasted on Balfour and Hasperger sitting around feeling sorry for themselves and trying to solve the mystery of the Dinoshark then trying to convince others that the Dinoshark exists that it just becomes boring. It’s not interesting, there’s nothing happening for most of the movie, the exchanges between characters is downright silly and unappealing, and there’s not even a scene of gratuitous nudity to help us through it all (afterall, it was made for TV).

So really, the only thing the movie has going for it is the Dinoshark itself and even though I have my complaints, there are some cool elements at play here. The effects are pretty solid (better than most Asylum movies), and the fact that it’s a shark with a T-Rex’s face is f*cking awesome. And while most of it is shoddy CGI they even bust out a few practical effects when kills are done up-close that I totally appreciated. Plus, the Dinoshark jumps out of the water multiple times, once to get over a barge and the other to eat a helicopter, both of which were pretty fun to behold. And the final action sequence between the Dinoshark and Balfour was pretty dope… if only

Video / Audio
Video: DINOSHARK is presented in anamorphic widescreen and looks as good and as clear as it would if you tuned into to the SyFy Channel to check it out—no more, no less.

Audio: The horrendous musical score is bumpin’ out in a 5.1 Dolby Digital mix that does the job ok enough, though the dialog is way too quiet in contrast to the scenes of Dinoshark feasting on people and wreaking chaos and destruction. But for the most part, it’s about standard.

The Extras
Commentary: the only special feature to be found on the disc is a commentary track with producers Roger Corman and his wife and director Kevin O’Neill. If you can stand sitting through this turkey a second time the commentary makes the view a little more bearable… that is, if you can look beyond the fact that they’re all treating this movie as something more than the borefest it really it.

And if you’re really so-inclined, you can check out the Trailer, which cuts together all the cool moneyshots of the film in an easy-to-view 2 minute trailer.

Last Call
I really wanted to like DINOSHARK and bask in the glory of a man-eating dinosaur / shark hybrid, but I just couldn’t do it. In the end, the acting was sloppy and most importantly, the film dragged on and on to the point of sheer boringness that even the few snippets of Dinoshark action couldn’t save it from itself. In terms of schlocky SyFy Original Movies, DINOSHARK is not one of the best and will definitely not be going to the SyFy Monster Hall of Fame.
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