(1 / 5)
Personally I do love a good shark movie so may be slightly biased towards this niche genre but after this debacle nothing could ever tempt me to come near an Open Water title ever again.
Some of the better examples of shark movies are of course Jaws, Open Water (the first one), The Shallows, The Reef and 47 Meters Down. Then to a lesser extent you have movies like Deep Blue Sea, Dark Tide and Shark Night 3D. Beyond that you descend into the doldrums of what is barely acceptable and devoid of all realism such as Sharknado and 2-Headed Shark attack. Sadly for Open Water 3 Cage Dive I would firmly place it between Sharknado and Dark Tide.
This is to say that although the film does attempt some realism it’s exectution is of extremely poor quality. For shark movie lovers this does feel like a missed opportunity as the real stars of the show (the Great Whites) are seamlessly integrated into the witless bumbling actors’ meanderings.
I should probably mention our protagonists at this point (although under duress). Our three young, hip and attractive tourists are neither likeable or have had their characters written well. Before the movie has even given you a chance to like any of these hapless fools we see an unlikely love triangle that does nothing as a plot device and actually detracts from the movie.
As the movie progresses and the three are inevitably dumped into the cruel Pacific we see just how awful the acting/dialogue is. Although surrounded by menacing Great White sharks and at the mercy of elements are heroes still think it’s a good idea to splash around screaming and shouting. Never at any point do we actually think that any of them may be scared. You can almost see young Megan Peta Hill trying to catch her reflection off of the shark’s head to make sure she looks ok for her instagram shots.
By some miracle the group manage to find a substantial life raft to which you would expect that they now have a greater chance of survival? No not our bunch of survival experts. They manage to shoot the raft with their own flare gun. This is the point I really wanted to turn it off.
Instead in my mind I started comparing these scenes with the intense fear and sadness I felt in the closing scenes of the first Open Water movie. Blanchard Ryan did an excellent job of making us feel isolated, without hope and truly lost. Open Water 3 felt more like I was expecting to see the two-headed shark at any moment.
Again the movie’s one strong point are the sharks themselves. Whoever did the work filming/editing the shark scenes deserved to be involved with a far better quality product than this for all their efforts. For all the waffle-like dialogue and bad acting the odd shark attack or scare did just about make the movie barely watchable. On IMDB the movie collected a 4/10 which I would say was probably fair but only based on the strength of the shark visuals.
Overall is this one worth watching? I’m afraid it’s a resounding no unless you are absolutely shark mad and can stomach the awful script/dialogue for long ensure to get you to the shark scenes. If we are to see an Open Water 4 breach the surface they need to revisit the first movie and concentrate on what works for this genre.