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Tag refers to the iconic 1975 shark attack horror movie directed by Steven Spielberg and was his first major success. It was written by Peter Benchley and Carl Gottlieb and is based off of the novel by Benchley. The iconic orchestral score was composed by John Williams.

A young woman named Chrissie Watkins has been gruesomely killed under mysterious circumstances. A medical examiner examining her remains determines that she was killed by a shark. Police chief Martin Brody plans to close the Amity Island beach. However, he is opposed by the mayor Larry Vaughan who argues that reports of a shark attack will ruin the town's economy because the town earns most of its money through tourists visiting its beach. The examiner changes the cause of death to a boating accident and Brody reluctantly accepts the explanation.

Brody's concerns prove to be correct as the same shark that killed Chrissie begins attacking other civilians at the Amity Island beach in broad daylight. The situation escalates to the point that Vaughan is forced to acknowledge the existence of the shark and that it must be immediately dealt with. Brody sets out on a boat with experienced and vengeful shark hunter Quint and young marine biologist Matt Hooper to stop the shark once and for all.

The movie mostly follows the general plot of the novel, but excises many of the subplots to focus on the main plot of getting rid of the shark. The main characters' personalities were significantly changed because Spielberg found the original novel's characters to be too unlikable.

The film was noted for its extremely rough filming. Amongst the myriad problems the filmmakers faced, the mechanical shark did not work properly and the filmmakers compensated for this by not showing the shark onscreen most of the time even though it is the main antagonist. The film's massive success came as a surprise for filmmakers and its success was also credited with popularizing the idea of a summer blockbuster, high budget studio produced films that studios hope will make a lot of money. The film won Academy Awards for Film Editing, Dramatic Score, and Sound. It is a major inspiration on other killer shark movies and inspired a wave of movies revolving around intimidating real life animals attacking humans. It has also been an influence on monster horror movies involving fictional creatures such as the original Alien, which was pitched as "Jaws in space." The film also received three film sequels as well as video game adaptations. However, none of them received the wide acclaim the first film did.

The film's success also had some negative consequences. The film scared audiences so much that beach attendance dropped. The amount of sharks being killed by humans increased and Benchley came to regret writing the novel as he felt he helped propagate misconceptions about sharks. In his later years, he worked on non fiction books and argued for the conservation of sharks. Nevertheless, the film is still highly regarded by many.

The film's iconic status has led to the film being parodied and homaged numerous times. The poster for the first film is often homaged and Spielberg even parodied his own movie in the opening scene of his movie 1941. John Williams' theme for the shark, which notably starts off alternating between two notes and acts as a warning to the viewing audience that the shark is nearby, is also iconic and often homaged.



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Last updated: 07/08/18 4:09 AM by jojosstand
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