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Film / The Last Shark

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"At the end of the day, The Last Shark gives the impression of Jaws misremembered. It all seems so familiar, and yet not quite right, as if the same events were taking place in an alternate universe."
Ed Glaser

The Last Shark (Italian title: L'ultimo squalo), also known as Great White, is an Italian horror film "influenced by" Jaws.

This film contains examples of:

  • Adaptational Nice Guy: Unlike the one-dimensionally callous Mayor Vaughn, Mayor Wells actually makes an effort to take precautions against the shark by installing safety barriers and in the finale even goes as far as to attempt to take down the shark himself.
  • Adult Fear: The main characters daughter is injured by the shark.
  • An Arm and a Leg:
    • Jenny gets her leg bitten off by the shark, but survives.
    • Wells gets both his legs bitten off and dies quickly of the blood loss.
  • Artistic License – Biology: This movie did the roaring sharknote  thing six years before Jaws: The Revenge...
  • Ashes to Crashes: Ron's corpse is fed to the shark, because Peter knows the shark will be killed by what's inside of Ron.
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  • Awesome Mc Coolname: Ron Hammer, the equivalent of Quint.
  • Cool Hat: Riley, an amateur shark hunter, has on a cowboy hat.
  • Damsel in Distress: Peter's wife, Gloria, in the climax. She even goes full hysterical after the shark eats the sleazy cameraman.
  • Disposable Pilot: Wells pilot Bernie. He does Outlive his boss but the shark manages to get the chopper into his mouth and drag it under the water.
  • Dolled-Up Installment: The film was released in Spain, Brazil and Japan as a part of the Jaws series. Which is one of several reasons why Universal took the film's American distributors to court in a (successful) bid to have it pulled from cinemas.
  • Faux Action Girl: Peter's daughter, Jenny. She goes with her boyfriend and other windsurfing friends to "avenge" their friend Mike, who the shark ate in the opening scene, by hunting the shark with a shotgun, but all that happens is when the shark eats the bait they dangled over the boat, the pole gets yanked loose and knocks her into the water. The shark then proceeds to bite her leg off before her idiot friends can pull her back onto the boat. She survives, but Wells is furious enough to slap his son in the face when he finds out about it all, as they took his boat for their ill-fated revenge attempt.
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  • Foreign Remake: Averted in theory but played straight in practice. While not officially a remake of Jaws, it follows the original film so closely that it may as well be considered one. This is ultimately what led to it being denied a theatrical release in America.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Riley spends a bit thrashing in the water to distract the shark from the others swimming for safety before trying to make it himself. He doesn't, but the people he bought time for do.
  • Hope Spot Wells pilot nearly get him out of the water in time, when he grabs the landing gear and the chopper lifts up but this he slips and falls back in, and when he makes it back again the shark is there.
  • It Can Think: Basically implied. Ron and Peter try to catch the shark and find it just outside an underwater coral reef/cavern, mistakenly kill a different shark, and then the shark knocks the reef/cavern walls until their way out is blocked by fallen rocks and they're trapped.
  • It's All My Fault: Wells blames himself for Jenny's injury due to it happening on his boat, on an amateur shark hunt led by his son, even though he had no knowledge of it.
  • The Last Title: The title in both languages.
  • Mythology Gag: The name of the protagonist Peter Benton is a nod to Peter Benchley, author of the original novel.
  • Plot Hole:
    • When Peter rescues his friends from the destroyed floating pier, the shark then keeps pulling it further away once he's on it. His friends and wife should have just driven up in his boat beside it once it stopped and gotten him off, but they disappear from the film entirely. There is no explanation why they didn't come save him.
    • When the regata is held, Wells claims there will be boats with armed men aboard strategically placed outside the bay. When the shark attacks...they are nowhere to be found.
  • Stock Footage: When not portrayed by an animatronic, the shark is represented by documentary footage.
  • Threatening Shark: Serves as the primary antagonistic force.
  • Whatever Happened to the Mouse?: After Wells is eaten by the shark, no one reacts whatsoever. Given what a big deal he seemed to be in the town, it's utterly bizarre that his death is never addressed, not even by his son.


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