29th May2020

‘Ouija Shark’ Review

by Phil Wheat

Stars: Steph Goodwin, Kylie Gough, Robin Hodge, John Migliore, Amy Osborne, Christina Roman, Zoe Towne, Peter Whittaker | Written by David A. Lloyd | Directed by Scott Patrick (aka Brett Kelly)

Director Brett Kelly, under his Scott Patrick pseudonym, re-teams with writer David A. Lloyd for the duos THIRD shark movie (the first two being Jurassic Shark and Raiders of the Lost Shark – hmmm, I’m sensing a titular pattern) – possibly the craziest of the three… Ouija Shark. Yes, Ouija Shark. As if we need ANOTHER supernatural shark movie after the brilliance (and no I’m NOT being sarcastic) that was Griff Furst’s Ghost Shark.

With a title like Ouija Shark you’re either all in or you’re running a thousand miles in the other direction… so to try and convince you to watch this one, if it sounds like your idea of hell, would seem like folly. But I’m going to try!

Ouija Shark follows a group of teenage girls who, whilst partying in their back yard, summon an ancient man-eating shark after messing with a ouija board that had washed up on the beach where one of the gang, Jill, had been relaxing. So what are a bunch of terrified ladies to do? Well… how about finding an an “occult specialist” (actually Jill’s father) who enters the shark’s supernatural realm (something that needs to be seen to be believed, trust me) to rid the world of the deadly, killer, spirit shark once and for all.

Right, let’s get this out of the way first. Apparently director Brett Kelly uses the pseudonym Scott Patrick when he makes ultra-low budget horror. And Ouija Shark is ULTRA low budget. Made for a reported $300, in Canada (so that’s about £175 at current market rates) – a ridiculously low amount of money for ANY film, even short films – Ouija Shark harkens back to the shot on video era of filmmaking, where friends got together to make films that remarkably made it to video stores, thanks to a film-hungry rental market.

Of course here we’re obviously dealing with shot on digital but the ethos behind it still feels very old-school. Especially when you consider the cast basically performed for no money and the film shot on two locations, having to make do with the pool area of someone’s home and what looks to be a park/woods (where guerrilla filmmaking can run riot, without need for pesky expensive permits). So where did the budget go? Not on the shark, that’s for sure!

Yes, the titular creature – despite reportedly costing $200 of the films $300 budget – certainly looks like a cheap hand puppet come rubber toy, appearing as unconvincingly terrifying as a $200 dollar shark ever could! But then that’s the appeal of these types of film – to have fun with the inherent ridiculousness of them. And boy, is Ouija Shark ridiculous. But it knows it too. Each and every one of the cast hams it up considerably, acting out a script that is, honestly, hilarious, Hilariously funny and hilariously bad, in a The Room kind of way, at the same time.

After all, the intentional stupidity of one of the girls trying to get the shark high HAS to be a joke right? A total in-joke, one that makes fun of the concept, the audience and the genre as a whole. You’re laughing WITH the film not at it. It’s a very fine line to walk for such a low-budget movie, which also suffers from the very stigma of being low budget; but Brett Kelly, sorry Scott Patrick, makes it work.

If you like your movies, daft, stupid, ridiculous and most of all fun, then Ouija Shark might just fit the bill. The film is out now on DVD and Digital from Wild Eye Releasing.


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