My summer vacations revolved around one thing: summer blockbusters. This year’s summer movie season is in full swing, and is filled with every kind of sequel, reboot, and spin-off imaginable. For my first review, I’m taking you back to the first summer blockbuster 1975’s, Jaws.

Based on Peter Benchley’s 1974 novel of the same name, the film follows the same plot of the book. According to Time magazine, the book was on the bestseller list for over 44 weeks and the film was already in pre-production when it was released. In my opinion, the movie is better than the book, because no one is very likable in the novel, which is probably why most of the side plots and characters are cut out.

Due to technological and budgetary reasons, Steven Spielberg (the director) had to compromise with the scenes that featured the shark. A good amount of these scenes only hinted at a shark being in the water by showing floating yellow barrels and people getting dragged in the water. My favorite of these scenes are the ones that just show the fin. This creative choice added a layer of eeriness and the film benefited from it as a whole.

One of the greatest things about Jaws is the spot-on acting from the leading men: Roy Scheider as Chief Martin Brody, Richard Dreyfuss as Hooper, and Robert Shaw as Quint. The three play off each other and capture their character’s essence. Robert Shaw’s portrayal of Quint was snubbed of an Oscar nomination, although he should have won Best Supporting Actor. One of the main differences between the book and movie is Quint’s back story. This change fleshes out the character, without it we wouldn’t have gotten his amazing speech.
Another reason why this film is so iconic is the musical score. The alternating of the legandary two notes signaled the viewer that danger was approaching.It also is the 35th quote on AFI’s top movies quotes for when Brody tells Quint “You’re gonna need a bigger boat” after seeing the massive size of the shark.

Without Jaws, we wouldn’t have other Spielberg classics such as ET, Jurassic Park {My favorite}, Indiana Jones , and Saving Private Ryan. Sure, there are better movies, but it’s the old school charm that makes Jaws what it is. It was made in a simpler time when they didn’t rely on CGI or special effects. With the combo of Star Wars and Jaws in the 1970’s, it laid the groundwork for Blockbusters today.