If there weren't rampant stupidity in the world, there wouldn't be movies like "Jaws," the 1975 film by Steven Spielberg that was the highest grossing movie of all-time until "Star Wars" and "E.T." claimed the title in succession.
Here's the problem as the movie presents it: There's a shark in the water and it's eating people. Here's the solution as I see it: Don't go in the water. Naturally, the next thing you know, the entire town of Amity is in the water, which is kind of like drinking the contents of your gas tank and going inside your burning house to take a pee. Even the protagonist, Sheriff Brody (Roy Scheider), a transplanted New Yorker who's afraid of the water, ends up splashing about. Fine, I'll root for the shark.
Director Steven Spielberg sends out Brody, shark expert Matt Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss) and boat captain Quint (Robert Shaw), a man with an Ahab complex so extreme that he considers defrosting fishsticks to be a test of his manhood. At this point it seems reasonable to ask, "Has anybody heard of an elephant gun?" Brody is out there shooting at the shark with what looks like a cap pistol while Hooper and Quint are comparing scars.
Imagine the hero Brody would have been if he had thrown Hooper and Quint overboard and taken the boat back to dry land: He would have saved himself from having to land a lucky shot while perched perilously on a sinking mast, and would have saved millions from having their brains devoured by "Mr. Holland's Opus."
To spread the word about this Jaws review on Twitter.To get instant updates of Mr. Cranky reviews, subscribe to our RSS feed.