The best shark movies make you scared to head back into the water but, after the one true masterpiece in the genre, great movies are hard to come by. Many movies with sharks fail to be more than a cheesy horror effort with some poorly rendered sharks or lame characters, with sharks obviously shot somewhere else. However, when digging, there are some gems in the genre to mine.


A list of the best shark movies could begin and end with “Jaws.” After you see this movie, there is no need to even start to search out other shark movies, because they will all leave you disappointed in the end. Steve Spielberg’s tale of a shark terrorizing a small tourist town was the first real summer blockbuster and one of the greatest horror movies of all time. If there was ever a “Godfather” of shark movies, it is “Jaws.”

“Deep Blue Sea”

While “Jaws” made people afraid to go into the water, it was a straight horror movie. However, when talking about the best shark movies, there are also fun, bubblegum movies, and “Deep Blue Sea” is the best of the bunch. There have been many efforts at creating a “science gone wrong” shark movie but none do it as well as this movie. A scientist experiments on a cure for Alzheimer's disease and tests it on sharks. They then become super intelligent, very violent and eat Samuel L. Jackson. Plus, you get L.L. Cool J as a chef with a parrot. Who could ask for more?

“Soul Surfer”

Sure, this is more of an inspirational tale of a surfer, but she never would have been even a footnote in history if a shark had not bitten her arm off. One of the best shark movies of all time features the shark as the catalyst that begins this amazing true story of a girl who fights back to realize her dreams despite the attack. Then, at the end, the shark is hanging dead and everything is all right. Now, let’s get that sequel going, where the shark’s distressed relatives come back for revenge.

“Open Water”

You would think that a movie about a couple being stranded in the middle of shark infested waters for 79 minutes might get monotonous. That is the beauty of this shark movie, as the tension is kept through the entire running time. This is not a movie you should ever watch if you plan on heading out to scuba dive, and don’t expect a happy ending. The movie is based on the real-life story of a couple who were lost at sea and never found. However, if you like watching sharks eat people, dive right in!

“Shark Tale”

If the joys of “Shark Week” aren’t for you, one of the best shark movies is an animated tale by DreamWorks. This movie takes the classic gangster genre and transplants it into the world of sharks. With voice talent like Robert DeNiro and Martin Scorsese, they have the dialect down pat, and with Will Smith and Jack Black, you got the right people for the kids. If you love “The Godfather,” this is a movie that will give you an offer you can’t refuse.

-Shawn Lealos