Before one can discuss the film Shark Exorcist, they need to understand the director, who has a cult following, and seems to be willing and wanton to tread the water of cheesy exploitation flicks, a graced the cinematic screen with An Erotic Vampire in Paris (2002) and Chainsaw Cheerleaders (2008), this is none other than Donald Farmer. After a short break in directing his masterpieces, he returns to do a short story with the Hi-8 (Horror Independent 8) and later Grindsploitation, therefore he combines the two popular topics sharks and demons, hence a silly story, with no intention for serious horror. While for some the title has them shaking their heads, then again a mere reflection on the latest shark theme movies, Ghost Shark, Sharkenstein, Sharknado 4 and truly over 45 zany shark movie titles and plots concepts, litter the shoreline of horror. Hence, why not another thoroughly ridiculous film from WildEye Releasing, which shatters any connection to b-movie and lowers it to a z-grade.
The plot of this $300,000 insane story wraps around an evil nun committing murder to a woman and using her body and blood to finish a satanic vengeance rite in order to summon the devil, which takes the possession of a shark, in a freshwater lake near the small village of Paris Landing. Sounds strange and yet interestingly weird, but wait it goes even more wacky, as a swimmer Ali (Angela Kerecz) finds herself horrendously attacked by a shark except her wounds disappear without a trace and makes a full recovery, while psychic demon hunters arrive on the scene. In addition, to save the day Father Michael (Bobby Kerecz) appears ready to battle Satan in the form of the shark, with colorful lines of hit and miss humor. Unfortunately the humor struggles to save the production, and often lands with groans instead of enjoyment, where one hopes for laughter results with unhappiness. The shark, words leave the reviewer hard press to describe it, a purplish tint at moment with big glowing yellow eyes, oh that’s scary, silly and uninteresting. A clear understanding not a serious horror film, more comedy, but it doesn’t succeed on any level, at times it really ramps up for fun, the character Randy, portrayed by the outrageous James Balsamo. Meanwhile, Ali finds the need the constant need to bathe after her attack and a television crew of two show-up to film a psyche episode of ridiculous portions on the hand camera, as they feel devilish influence from the water. The entire scene presents itself in the form of paranormal investigators on reality television, referencing their lubricious jumps in conclusions for psyche phenomenon, although ruins it when another person jumps in front of the camera to mess up the broadcast but only shows a recording hence editing it all out, (what was the point). Also, listen closely for the reference to The Exorcist (1973) it comes in the form of the character Sister Blair and this adds to the character list of silliness. One last aspect the film clocks in at 71 minutes and it seems an add-on scene helps to achieve this length, all thanks to a goofy segment at an aquarium of a girl fascinated by sharks, receiving the unholy fortune of possession.
This entire movie plunges the shark-exploitation market further into a sewer, with actors struggling to keep serious lines in the dramatic, not of it works. Farmer’s movies in the past had a steady hand at the wheel of the vehicle, however herein the driver is blind at the wheel, as the CGI runs rampant and the special effects makeup comes across far too watery. The exploits of exorcisms and possessions gives a good amount of enjoyment with projectile vomit, but it still needs to look good and sloppy and that leads back to silly rather than any horrific moments.
One always tries to discover the redeeming quality of a movie this however struggles to get the head above water and swim to safely with this low-grade film. It makes one hope that Lloyd Kaufman makes a toxic shark-avenging movie, but in all seriousness, the VOD markets swims in swarms of sharks, Shark Exorcist is nonsensical enjoyment. Tread the shallows carefully when selecting your next shark adventure, as no lifeguard station exists for your rescue.
This review was originally posted on the now defunct Rogue Cinema website in September 2016 with a view count of 1,603. It was created before I had DOA Reviews.
- “Possessed by Satan’s Shark!! PRAY FOR HER!”
IMDb Rating: 1.4/10
Baron’s Rating: 1.0/10