I have to admit, I liked the first Sharknado. It was so unpretentiously bad with an overtly self-mocking flavor, it was easy to just sit back and enjoy the total disregard for logic.
When they announced a sequel, I exercised the same cautious enthusiasm I had about a Piranha 3D sequel. These things can either get better with a bigger budget…or crash and burn like flaming hammerheads.
Guess which path Sharknado: The Second One followed?
There are many things that were charming in the original that simply did not work in the sequel, but this is not what wrecked the boat. What brought the schlock plot to a screeching halt was the sheer number of celebrities that simply had to have their face in the place.
Hungry for anything that gives the illusion of them being real people with senses of humor rather than vacuous two dimensional talking heads feigning enthusiasm for the most mundane of bullshit, Hollywood and media celebrities flooded the film like the streets of L.A. in the original Sharknado. Swimming in a shallow script, their over-the-top characterizations came off as more pompous than humorous in my opinion.
Seriously, who needed to see Andy Dick deliver a couple of lame lines as a police officer? Who needed to see Andy Dick deliver ANY lines as ANYTHING? OK, maybe if they had Andy Dick DOING lines in the film, it might have been appropriately funny, but who in the hell did he bribe to merit any screen time at all?
Same goes for Matt Lauer and Al Roker who gobbled up screen time like a Hoover vacuum cleaner. Watching Lauer kill a shark live on television when you know Roker would have just crapped his pants missed an opportunity for at least a little irony. The sheer number of celebrities marching through this flick like the Baatan Death March was staggering.
Vivica Fox was given two sets of screen credits including one set for her Beluga sized butt. Any shark biting into that would have enough left over for a snack. I really couldn’t figure out what her purpose was except to fill in as a surrogate love interest in the absence of Tara Reid for most of the movie. Apparently Tara is a lot smarter than people give her credit for.
And did we really need to see Kelly Osbourne, Billy Ray Cyrus, Perez Hilton, Kelly Ripa, Robert Klein and downtown Julie Brown (just to name a few) ride this neo-pop culture breakout like a whore? And I use the word “whore” with precision since a “prostitute” would have at least been PAID for sucking this hard!
Robert “Airplane” Hays as Captain Bob Wilson was a good casting decision, however. In fact, the only part of the entire film that was pretty damned amusing was the first ten minutes with its almost frame by frame take off on the Twilight Zone classic “Nightmare at 20,000 Feet” mashed up with Airplane. It was a brilliant start before the movie took a wrong turn and ended up in Craptown. That’s when the Hollywood types jockeying for face time jumped on the shark and tainted any entertainment value like Lyme disease bearing ticks.
It was always my opinion that Sharknado owed its popularity to its 2010 predecessor “Piranha 3D”. But to be fair to Piranha, except for the same brand of self-mocking “wink-wink” style, these two movies have absolutely nothing in common. There’s high level, well produced schlock and then there’s the Sharknado sequel: high-jacked by stars, stripped of all that made the original popular and left on blocks. In their enthusiasm to be a part of an internet sensation, their mass dragged it into oblivion…along with their own last shreds of dignity.
“A plus rated movie!” D+
“5 stars!” out of 1500
“Two thumbs up!”–the ass of the producer who agreed to let all these people cameo!