The mother of the summer blockbuster. Iconic, and for good reason. The characters are on point, as are the performances. Spielberg shows confidence in an early effort too – the talent is visible even though it’s one of his less ambitious films.
Pacing is generally good, but I’ve always felt it’s just ever so clunky in the first half. The intro is perfect, but then it takes a little while to settle into a rhythm. By the time the trio set sail on Quint’s boat it’s perfection. The Orca’s engine might be a bit rickety, but the film is rock solid when they hit the water on her and it remains that way for the rest of the run time. Characters are better defined, action is entertaining, and even the quiet moments pull you in.
Speaking of quiet moments, no discussion of Jaws can occur without mention of Shaw’s brilliant delivery of the 3+ minute Indianapolis monologue. It is a masterclass in acting, and he is absolutely charismatic throughout those three minutes. It remains one of my favourite monologues in cinema.
Bruce the Shark might have been a pain in the ass to work with, but the result is a thriller that stands the test of time!
Format: 4K Ultra HD Blu-Ray
This disc uses the same 4K scan created for the Blu-ray release back in 2012. It offers increased resolution, and a tasteful HDR grade. Aside from a few source related issues (some soft shots etc), it’s an impressive job considering the state of the negative.
The audio is even better. You won’t mistake this for a modern day mix, but it’s a robust DTS-X track with extremely well handled dialogue and effects. Naturally, John Williams’ memorable score is rendered perfectly.