Jaws 2 [1978]

Ushering in the age of the inferior sequel, Jaws 2 was essentially a license to print money. Indeed, the film did very well despite blatantly replicating the plot of Steven Spielberg's original, though to lesser effect. Roy Scheider returns as Martin Brody, sheriff of the small island town of Amity. Just as the beachside resort is rebounding from the previous movie's shark attacks, another great white is snacking on divers and water-skiers. Naturally, the town fathers don't want to confront reality and choose to proceed with a lucrative sailing regatta, resulting in a grisly loss of life. Besides the fact that director Jeannot Szwarc takes an impersonal, workaday approach to the film, Jaws 2 manages to be both stylistically flat and openly cynical about its commercial intentions. Of chief interest here is Scheider's performance, which wisely reflects the emotional fallout from Brody's last trauma in his obsessive behavior here. --Tom Keogh

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