Review : Jaws 2 (1978)

With the huge success of Jaws in the summer of 1975, it was obvious a sequel would see the light of day. Jaws 2 was directed by Jeannot Szwarc and released in 1978.

Four years after the events of the first film, Amity Island is back in business with the opening of a luxurious new hotel. A wave of mysterious incidents convince Chief Brody that another great white shark is once again threatening the people of Amity Island. Though he has a proof of the existence of the shark (a photograph taken by divers), officials still refuse to believe him and take the necessary measures. But when his own son is in danger, Chief Brody goes shark hunting one more time !

Jaws 2

Though incorporating new elements to avoid being redundant, the film is way too similar to Jaws. It has a different vibe, but that is barely enough not to feel like you’re simply watching a slightly different version of the original Jaws. The plot is almost identical to the first film and that is a major problem : Jaws 2 takes place only 4 years after the events of the previous film and somehow, the mayor and all the people of Amity seem oblivious to what happened. Did they all suffer severe trauma causing memory loss ? In this context, it feels silly that Chief Brody has to once again take matters into his own hands, against the stupid decisions made by…everybody else !

The characters are also not interesting enough to keep the viewer invested. The only person worth caring about is Chief Brody, thanks to Roy Sheider’s performance. The film either focuses too much or not enough on the teenagers. Had it focused more on those characters, watching them unknowingly go towards danger would have had more impact and would have been engaging. Instead, they are just annoying teens and you are almost rooting for the shark to get rid of them.

Jaws 2 is less suspensful than the first film but it has more thrills. There is more action in this sequel but the story does suffer from it and the plot is nothing more than a rehash of a classic masterpiece ! Although I liked how the shark was treated like a slasher villain, Jaws 2 is indeed a boring sequel.

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