Jumping Itself: Sharknado 3 Reviewed

23 Aug
Oh... just go.

Oh… just go.

Let me get this out of the way first. I love Sharknado.

The first movie was much more entertaining than what I was expecting and than it had any reason being (considering The Asylum was behind it). Sharknado 2 outright blew me away. It actually made it onto my Mount Rushmore of modern B-Movies (along with Supershark, Ice Twisters, and Mega Piranha). That said, something kept gnawing at me whenever I saw a promo or trailer for the latest in the Chum Trilogy (probably not what they call it, but hey). I think part of the unease was the realization that they might have hit on the perfect formula with the last iteration, and trying to top it would cross that line from awesomely bad to just bad. Was I paranoid, or were my fears justified?

Sharknado 3 takes place after the events of 2, obviously enough (though a Back to the Future 3 style sequel set in the old west would have been interesting).  Finn (Ian Ziering) is in Washington DC to receive a medal from President Mark Cuban (who can’t possibly be worse than a Trumpster fire in the White House). He seems in a rush, though, and not just because his family is waiting for him in Florida. His Finn-tuition is telling him that something is coming – something Sharknadic (I’m just full of made-up terms today). Of course he’s soon proven correct, and the White House gets obliterated – but not before Finn and President Cuban whip out the heavy ordinance and soak the area in shark guts.

From there it becomes standard “hero crosses a great distance to reunite with his family in the face of disaster” fare, albeit with lots of flying sharks, an armored RV, and the Hoff in a space shuttle.

There’s still a bunch of fun to be had with this film, if sporadically so. Cassie Scerbo returns after a one movie hiatus as Finn’s former waitress Nova, now a seasoned Sharknado hunter who travels the countryside with Frankie Muniz in the aforementioned RV. Muniz’s over the top ending is hilarious, which is one of the few cases in this story where that works.

And did I mention the Hoff? In a space shuttle? Yes, the ever-escalating trilogy finally conquers the final frontier in this one.

Sharks. In. Spaaaaace...

Sharks. In. Spaaaaace…

The space stuff mostly works, which I’d count as a hit. Sharknado 3 also misses a good deal, though. You can tell the writers went into full-on “let’s just throw every idea we can think of into this” mode, and the result is something of a mess at times. Sharknado 2 worked because it maintained an internal consistency – as bizarre as that was. This film lacks the same compass, and suffers for it.

Then there’s the cameo tsunami. I lost count of how many celebs are in this movie, but I think I sprained my thumb scrolling through IMDB on my phone. After Sharknado 2’s success, it seems like anyone and everyone wanted in on the next one – and The Asylum was only too happy to oblige. This might have played a role in why the movie is so much less coherent – it’s hard to cut footage when you don’t want to remove a cameo. Unless you’re this guy.

Overall, Sharknado 3 had an impossible level of expectation to fill and predictably fell short. Despite that, there’s fun to be had. Just don’t expect the wall-to-wall fun insanity from the last movie. The ending teases a Sharknado 4, so maybe this will be like Windows or Star Trek (every other iteration being the “good” one). I think it might be played out, though.

It’s the Asylum, however, so I expect we will have at least three more movies to figure that out. I vote for the next one to involve time-travel. Sharknado 4: Sharklantis. Has a nice ring to it…

6.5 cameos out of 10

One Response to “Jumping Itself: Sharknado 3 Reviewed”

  1. phoenixx24 August 24, 2015 at 10:36 pm #

    I can’t believe you didn’t mention the sharks flying through the White House – there was a precise moment where I thought to myself “OK, I get that there’s a tornado with sharks outside but why are the sharks still FLYING inside corridors of the building?” Of course, then I laughed and thought “There’s a tornado of sharks – logic went out the window long ago”.

    Liked by 1 person

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