Trash shocks fail to bite

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - MOVIES -

HERE’S a prob­lem when you walk out of a shark at­tack hor­ror flick wish­ing more peo­ple had died. Un­for­tu­nately, that’s the case with Bait 3D – Aus­tralia’s hap­pily B-grade Jaws- meets-dis­as­ter movie.

More peo­ple die from the tsunami that hits the Aussie coast than from the great white sharks.

At least two get trapped inside an un­der­ground su­per­mar­ket af­ter the wave hits.

One ex­plores the flooded aisles wait­ing for the hu­man snacks to fall off the shelves, while the other me­an­ders around the wa­ter-filled carpark.

Af­ter chomp­ing up the grisly drowned corpses float­ing about, the sharks start to pick off the sur­vivors try­ing to es­cape their su­per­mar­ket prison.

Think Snakes on a Plane, ex­cept it’s sharks in a shop­ping cen­tre. It sounds ridicu­lous and it’s meant to be, and you’re ei­ther a fan of these kinds of trashy hor­ror genre movies or you’re not.

The prob­lem with Bait 3D though, is di­rec­tor Kim­ble Ren­dall and some of the cast’s tongue-incheek tone doesn’t al­ways come across.

Xavier Sa­muel ( A Few Best Men) plays a for­mer surf life­saver, whose world fell apart when his best friend, and the brother of his fi­ancee (Sharni Vin­son), was killed by a shark.

A year later, just be­fore the tsunami hits, is coin­ci­den­tally the first time he sees his now ex-fi­ancee in a su­per­mar­ket, which is be­ing robbed at the time by Ju­lian McMa­hon’s amus­ing Doyle. McMa­hon gets laughs with his cool tough-guy, but it’s Dan Wyl­lie who has the most fun, with his bo­gan ac­cent and ma­ni­a­cal laugh­ter.

They aren’t the only sea­soned Aussie ac­tors, with Martin Sacks star­ring as a wid­owed po­lice of­fi­cer with a messed-up daugh­ter (Phoebe Tonkin).

While she’s with her dad, her boyfriend ( Chron­i­cle’s Alex Rus­sell) is hunted on the carpark floor, where Lin­coln Lewis’ Kyle sits in a sub­merged car with his an­noy­ing, whinge­ing girl­friend (Cariba Heine). All re­alise the ob­vi­ous – don’t go into the wa­ter. The film­mak­ers, how­ever, give them plenty of ex­cuses to get back in. High­lights in­clude one clever scene in­volv­ing a shark-re­pel­lent suit, an­other when a sec­ondary char­ac­ter is chomped in two. You just wish it hap­pened more. The Aus­tralian/Sin­ga­porean co-pro­duc­tion breaks golden hor­ror movie rules more than once. Some won’t care, but oth­ers will.

You can’t com­pare Bait 3D to Jaws – part of Jaws’ ter­ri­fy­ing sus­pense was cre­ated by what you didn’t see.

In Bait 3D, a full com­puter-gen­er­ated mon­ster launches it­self out of the ocean within the first 10 min­utes. On one hand, yes, it does set up the silly tone, but it also feels like a wasted pre­ma­ture re­veal.

opens to­day.

Sharni Vin­son (as Tina) and Xavier Sa­muel (Josh) star in cheesy shark hor­ror film

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