- Awesome Music:
- Ensemble Dark Horse:
- Kelly, Seans vibrant water-skier girlfriend and fellow drinking game player, is liked even by many who felt the film as a whole was weak.
- The One-Scene Wonder Tunnel Guide played by P.T. Horn. When her group gets trapped after the tunnels lose watertight integrity, she remains cool and professional. She is able to keep the group calm, has them huddle to keep warm, tells them to take shallow breaths, and lead them to safety when the tunnels are cleared. Give this woman a hand.
- Harsher in Hindsight: Watch this film after seeing Blackfish and you won't be able to not notice the sickly orca dorsal fins.
- Hilarious in Hindsight:
- Seven years after the film's release, a Jaws ride opened with Universal Studios Florida in 1990, just down the street from SeaWorld, where this film was set.
- This film wouldn't be the last time a shark is depicted attacking Orlando, as in 2015, Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! had sharks unleashing mayhem at Universal Orlando.
- Because the film was made during the 3D craze of the 1980s, many shots are gimmicks designed to appear as though objects are coming right at you, like Mike firing a harpoon at the camera or the entrance to the underwater tunnels. Needless to say, without seeing it in 3D, they look quite ridiculous.
- In one scene we see the big shark's fin rise up right behind a group of water skiers. Which would be pretty scary until you realize that given how huge the shark is (about 35 feet) her mouth would have to be about 15 feet in front of the skiers she is supposedly about to eat.
- Retroactive Recognition:
- Sequelitis: Many people argue on which is worse, this or the one with a stalking, and roaring, shark.
- So Bad, It's Good: Many years later, however, and its still fun to watch as long as you dont take it too seriously.
- Special Effect Failure:
- Every shot of the shark, particularly the scene where it breaks the aquarium's glass shield (it even illustrates the Film subpage). This film is a poster child for 3D effects done wrong.
- When the shark blows up, its intestine and teeth pop out from nowhere. And the explosion accompanying it looks like it's from an Atari 2600.
- Let's not forget the floating fish head at the beginning. Or the mini-sub that exposes part of the chroma-keyed background through its cockpit. Or the constant reuse of Mike and the dolphins swimming away from the shark. Or the final shot with the incredibly fake dolphins.
- Suspiciously Similar Song: The main theme sounds awfully similar to the theme to Challenge Of The Go Bots.
- Visual Effects of Awesome: As poor as most of the effects are, the body of Overman on the autopsy table is impressively lifelike. Perhaps a little too lifelike for its own good.
- Vindicated by History: The film's reception to the general public has had a bizarre zigzag through history. On release, critics were mixed to negative at best, but the general audience did enjoy it. Then, especially as the 3D shots began to look more and more dated, sentiments greatly soured. But as the years went by with both the sequel and many other killer shark films being poorly made and by-the-books Jaws 1 and 2 rip-offs, Jaws 3-D's reception has warmed. The dated special effects have also gained some love, though not necessarily for intended reasons.
- What an Idiot!: The first victim, who breaks the cardinal rule of diving: diving alone (or without telling anyone where he was going) to inspect a malfunctioning underwater gate. Even if there hadn't been a huge shark out there, some other disaster could have easily happened with no one to rescue him—indeed, until his mangled corpse is found, there's considerable speculation from everyone—his wife, his friends, his employers, that he may have just run off on a bender.
YMMV / Jaws 3D