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Film / Sharktopus

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A Syfy Channel Original Movie released September 25, 2010, this film centers on the rampage of a half-shark half-octopus whose handlers have lost control of it.

The film would later go on to inspire Piranhaconda, a sort of Spiritual Successor in 2012, and followed by two official sequels: Sharktopus vs Pteracuda which aired on August 2, 2014 and Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf on July 19, 2015.

It also managed to - against all odds - spawned a Chinese Foreign Remake, titled "Mutant Sea Monster". Really.

This film contains examples of:

  • Alien Blood: Green blood sprays when the pteracuda is harpooned.
  • All Part of the Show: Some of the beachgoers, including a pair of women and a father and son, wonder aloud if one of the titular character's attacks is all part of a show. One obnoxious teen lingers even after it starts eating people on-stage, snickering and saying "Awesome!".
  • Always a Bigger Fish: In the beginning of the film a beach girl is attacked by a shark while swimming off the shoreline, but the Sharktopus saves her by devouring it.
  • Artistic License – Biology: A surprising amount, even for a movie about a mix-and-match critter made up of two totally unrelated creatures.
    • If any evidence of a octopus mouth shows up this post by biologist P.Z. Myers mentions that a creature with two mouths and no method of waste disposal will eventually explode.
    • Also, a more minor point - an octopus doesn't have the tentacular clubs at the end of its arms. A squid does, but "Sharkquid" just doesn't have the same ring to it.
    • How did the Sharktopus breathe on land? Is it part landshark?
    • Or breathe at all, with no mantle to pump water through octopus-gills and an octopus's habit of lurking in one place for prey? That kind of behavior would asphyxiate any obligate ram-ventilator, such as the kind of shark its front end resembles.
    • Heck, how does it even swim? It doesn't have a shark's tail or a cephalopod's mantle and siphon for propulsion; it just waggles its tentacles around slightly and at random.
    • The "egg case" which the second film's sharktopus comes from doesn't look anything like an actual mermaid's purse. Octopuses lay eggs individually, and great whites (the type of shark which the creature's forebody best resembles) give live birth.
    • The instructions the Mad Scientist in the second film relates for installing a behavior-control device in the Sharktopus involve inserting the device near the anterior lobe of its cerebrum. Sharks' cerebral hemispheres are tiny bulges too simple to have lobes, and the octopus brain doesn't have a distinguishable cerebrum at all.
  • Art Shift: Sharktopus has a different visual appearance in the sequel.
    • Possibly justifiable as the first one having been female (it left an egg case behind) and the second, male.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Andy and Nicole are less than cordial towards one another when they first meet, and for a while after that, but you can tell they're going to end up together by the end of the movie.
  • Berserk Button: Hurting the marine biologist that raised it is this for the second Sharktopus in the sequel. Both her abusive, greedy uncle (who outright says he locked her in a closet right in front of it) and the Pteracuda (who is trying to eat her) are attacked presumably for this reason.
  • Big Bad: Vlad in the sequel. While he's working for an offscreen boss, he's the one responsible for Pteracuda's rampage and it's controller throughout most of the film.
  • Big "NO!":
    • Screamed by Andy after Santos' death.
    • The second victim to die directly from the Sharktopus gives a pretty nice one as he contemplates how he's about to die.
  • Bioweapon Beast: Sharktopus was developed as a weapon by the U.S. government, but they also made it psychotic so when its Restraining Bolt malfunctions, it starts actively hunting humans, even going inland in search of prey.
  • Combat Tentacles: It's called a Sharktopus for a reason. With swords on the tips of its tentacles for some weird reason.
  • Creator Cameo:
    • Roger Corman as the guy taking the old coin found on a beach. It also makes for a funny moment when he bites the coin to see if it's real. Given Corman's legendary...erm, frugality, you can just see him calculating just how many cheap b-movies he can fund with it.
    • Similarly, Corman's daughter, Mary Corman, appears as the bungee-jumping girl.
  • Denser and Wackier: Sharktopus vs Pteracuda is even goofier than the original.
    • Sharktopus vs Whalewolf is so demented makes the first two movies look like the original Jaws in comparison.
  • Dull Surprise: One fellow sees his friend get dragged down and stares like a nincompoop. Then when it's his turn? "Oh. No. Not. Like. This."
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: It's implied the second Sharktopus in the sequel starts attacking the Pteracuda to protect the woman that raised it after its control device is destroyed.

  • Firing in the Air a Lot: When tourists disregard warnings of a giant half-shark half-octopus approaching, this is what gets them to leave.
  • Flying Seafood Special: The line of thought on combining a pterodactyl and barracuda was "Let's make a weaponized pterosaur out of DNA fragments, and since we need something else to add we can throw in breathing air and water, for ... reasons''.
  • Gigantic Adults, Tiny Babies: The sequel's sharktopus is first seen as a hatchling, and its tentacles aren't even a foot long.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Nicole created a hunter, but her dad wanted a killer. He changes her programming and everyone ends up paying for it.
  • Groin Attack: For some reason plenty of these get dished out in the third movie. Some of them involving voodoo dolls.
  • A Head at Each End: The Sharktopus has a shark's head at one end and octopus tentacles at the other, so presumably this trope applies if there's a beak amidst the latter.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Or rather, by his own Sharktopus.
    • Happens in the sequel when the guy responsible for making the Pteracuda and releasing the Sharktopus to fight it gets killed by both at the same time.
    • In the third film the voodoo priest who tries to control Sharktopus with Hollywood Voodoo gets brutally offed by the beast.
  • Hollywood Voodoo: Shows up in the third movie, complete with voodoo dolls. And at the end we see Sharktopus brought back to life by voodoo. Voodoo Zombie Sharktopus!
  • I Do Not Like Green Eggs and Ham: One scene features a tourist who is extremely reluctant to give bungee jumping a try until her boyfriend promises that they can spend the rest of the day at the spa if she does. After bungee jumping, she enjoys it so much that she insists on going again. Unfortunately, a giant predator that is lurking in the ocean below makes a successful attempt to snatch her out of the air and eat her.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: For a guy with a submachine gun, shooting at a 20-some foot tall Shartopus (which tends to remain fairly still while he shoots,) Andy sure manages to miss a LOT of his shots.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Stacy actively seeks out the Sharktopus so she can cover the story. Her insistence to get up close and personal with the monster eventually gets both her and her cameraman killed.
    • Another one appears in the sequel. She surprisingly lives.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Andy seems at first nothing more than a mercenary who loves cheap booze and cheap women, but he later refuses an offer of $1 million to not kill the titular monster. Mind you, this is just after his best buddy, Santos, is pulled overboard and chewed up, so Andy has a good excuse.
  • Kiss of the Vampire: Parodied when the Mad Scientist from the third film clearly gets off on letting the Whalewolf "taste" her shoulder.
  • Immune to Bullets: The Sharktopus' main body can withstand machine gun fire. It's tentacles sort of float in and out of it depending on how they want the plot to unfold.
    • Same goes for the Pteracuda in the sequel. Bullets don't seem to do more than annoy it.
    • Needless to say the Whalewolf in the third movie yawns at mere firearms.
  • It's Been Done: Take a look at an earlier film with a suspiciously similar plot (minus the military angle) and a suspiciously similar monster: Devil Fish, an Italian Jaws ripoff made in the 80's. You know these people are scraping the bottom of the barrel when they rip off a godawful Italian ripoff. Thankfully, this film doesn't take itself as seriously.
  • Just Think of the Potential!: The military sort.
  • Lampshade Hanging: And how, this movie gets close to a parody of Syfy Channel Original Movies at times.
  • Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: In the original. The third film gives us a beautiful mad scientist instead.
  • Mind-Control Device: A harness feature of the militarization effort that created Sharktopus and Pteracuda.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Oddly enough, this isn't the only form of entertainment that featured a sharktopus.
    • The Pteracuda in the sequel.
    • The Whalewolf in the second sequel.
  • My Eyes Are Up Here: Said by a reporter (Stacy) to the boatman she's trying to hire (Pez) when he ogles her breasts.
  • The Password Is Always "Swordfish": The kill switch password to destroy the Sharktopus is "Pumpkin", the term of affection that Nicole's father used to call her.
  • Plot Armor: The only sensible explanation as to why the Sharktopus is so hesitant to eat Andy at the end, and the explosion doesn't hurt him when it kills the creature.
  • Previously on…: Sharktopus vs Pteracuda starts off with a brief recap of the original film.
  • Redeeming Replacement: The second Sharktopus is much less monstrous than the first and while it does kill people, it mainly does so when pissed off (which due to what's done to it, is understandable). It even protects the woman that raised it from the Pteracuda and kills her abusive uncle.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: After Santos, his best friend, gets killed, Andy spends the rest of the movie trying as hard as he can to kill the Sharktopus in a fury.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: The news cameraman from the second film quits after one too many close calls, forcing the Intrepid Reporter to hire a homeless man to operate the camera for her.
  • Shout-Out: The soldiers that get slaughtered by the Pteracuda in the second film's opening sequence have the same names as the marines from Aliens, although they don't look anything like the corresponding characters.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Apparently, the best way to kill a Sharktopus.
    • Likewise the second film ends with the Pteracuda being blown up, though the Sharktopus survives.
  • Summon Bigger Fish: The plot of the sequel, in which a Sharktopus is unleashed to stop another genetic engineered monster.
  • Super-Persistent Predator: Guess who. Justified because the Sharktopus was specifically designed to hunt humans.
    • This is shown more directly in the sequel, as the second Sharktopus presumably lacks the original's brain alterations and, due to being raised as an aquarium animal is only aggressive when it's pissed off. Meanwhile, the Pteracuda is stuck on 'kill everything that moves' mode.
  • Tasty Gold: The old man bites the coin he found on the beach to see if it's real.
  • Tempting Fate: In the opening, a woman goes swimming in the ocean alone, is stalked by a huge bloodthirsty great white shark...and is "saved" when said shark is grabbed and killed by the title beast.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Stacy has been pursuing the Sharktopus throughout the entire film just to get a scoop, has repeatedly witnessed just how dangerous it is, has already been rescued once before from being eaten alive by a timely intervention of the heroes, and yet still tries to document it when it already killed her cameraman and is approaching her at the end.
    • In the second sequel, the mad scientist who created Whalewolf lets slip in front of it that she seeks to give it to a pet adoption agency to be rid of it. Guess what happens.
  • Turned Against Their Masters:
    • After the device that enabled the scientists to control their project gets smashed, this happens—although it's not so much against its masters as it is against humanity in general.
    • Subverted with both monsters in the sequel. The Sharktopus is dangerous, but doesn't go after people specifically until it's royally pissed off and the Pteracuda is largely being controlled by Vlad or doing what it's been programmed to do.
    • In the third movie the Whalewolf turns on its creator after she says to its face that she intends to give it away to a pet adoption agency.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: An old man and a woman are on a beach with a metal detector. The woman finds an old coin, and is then grasped by the Sharktopus's tentacles, dragged into the water, and slain (all rather slowly). The man just stands there in Dull Surprise mode, waits until she is dead... and then goes to get the coin. Not out of place at all in a movie like this, though.
    • At another point n the movie two guys are discussing horrible ways to die. One sees the friend get dragged down by Sharktopus and stares in what looks like utter boredom before his turn.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Andy does actually own a shirt, he just never bothers to do it up.
  • Was Once a Man: The whalewolf, before he underwent an experimental anti-aging treatment to infuse him with wolves' and orcas' vigor.