July 22, 1983
JAWS 3-D (viewed by me in its shameful flat version) is another summer of ’83 movie that I’ve previously reviewed. But that was 13 years ago, and if I’m doing a summer movie series I can’t really skip over a sequel to the movie that kinda invented the summer blockbuster. I also thought it would be a good marker on the timeline, much like how RETURN OF THE JEDI and STAYING ALIVE indicate how much culture had changed in the six years since STAR WARS and SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER. In eight years we went from a popular beach read elevated by a knockout directorial vision to a gimmicky studio product sequel with twice the budget but a fraction of the style or substance.
It’s tempting to see sequels as emblematic of the ‘80s, but the truth is I counted almost as many released in 1975 as in 1983*. I suppose a difference is that 8 of the 10 in ’75 were part 2s, whereas 1983 gave us such part 3s as this, RETURN OF THE JEDI, SUPERMAN III, AMITYVILLE 3-D, and SMOKEY AND THE BANDIT PART 3. THE OMEN, FRIDAY THE 13TH, HALLOWEEN and ROCKY series’ had also hit part three in 1981 or 1982. So maybe it really was a different movie landscape. The era of part threes, heading into part fours. (read the rest of this shit…)