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10 shark-centered movies to stream during your next summer movie night


When you think of shark movies, you likely assume you’ll be tuning into the nail-biting plot of a person or group of people trapped deep in the shadows of the dark ocean.

While there are many shark-themed films where this gripping scenario takes place, some are less spine-chilling than others.

“Jaws” is a well-known, classic shark attack film that will creep you out and keep you away from large bodies of water for a while, whereas “The Meg” might be more entertaining for you.

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There are many thrilling shark films that make for the perfect movie night. (iStock)

  1. “Jaws”
  2. “The Shallows”
  3. “47 Meters Down”
  4. “The Reef”
  5. “Sharknado”
  6. “The Meg”
  7. “Shark Tale”
  8. “Deep Blue Sea”
  9. “Bait”
  10. “Open Water”

1. “Jaws”

“Jaws,” the original adventure thriller, was released in 1975. Since then, four sequels have been released, including “Jaws 2” in 1978, “Jaws 3-D” in 1983, “Jaws: The Revenge” in 1987 and “Cruel Jaws” in 1995.

The movies were so popular that Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida, opened a “Jaws” ride that was closed in 2012 to make room for more “Harry Potter” attractions.

A still from "Jaws"

“Jaws” is the most popular shark movie franchise to date. (Universal Pictures courtesy of Getty Images)

Universal Studios Japan has a “Jaws” attraction that is still open to visitors. 

2. “The Shallows”

Blake Lively is the leading lady in “The Shallows.” Her character, Nancy Adams, hits a secluded beach for a surfing adventure. 

While out on the water, she faces a shark attack and is able to escape, but only by swimming to a nearby rock. 

With the shark still near, she has to find a way to get off the rock and back to shore. 

The film was released in 2016.

3. “47 Meters Down”

“47 Meters Down” has a similar premise as “The Shallows.” Rather than filming above the water, though, the characters in this 2017 film, as the name suggests, are trapped deep underwater.

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Two sisters, played by Mandy Moore and Claire Holt, are trapped in a shark cage with dwindling oxygen and nearby sharks.

"47 Meters Down: Uncaged" movie premiere

There have been two “47 Meters Down” movies put out to date. (Eric Charbonneau/Getty Images for Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures)

The sequel, “47 Meters Down: Uncaged,” was released in 2019. In this adaptation, young divers played by different Hollywood stars are stuck deep down in the ocean in shark-infested waters.

4. “The Reef”

“The Reef” was released in 2010 and will likely chill your bones. 

In this film, a sailboat travels near the Great Barrier Reef, but the boat ends up capsizing and, of course, a shark is near. 

This movie is based on the true events of Ray Boundy, the only survivor of a similar occurrence in 1983.

5. “Sharknado”

The first of many “Sharknado” movies premiered in 2013. 

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“Sharknado,” the first in the fictional series, follows a disaster that brings sharks out of the ocean and onto land.

“Sharknado 2: The Second One” was released in 2014 and is set in New York City. 

“Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!” premiered in 2015 and “Sharknado: The 4th Awakens” hit screens in 2016.

Shark fin peering out of water

While some shark movies have more mild tones, most are thrilling, action-packed flicks. (iStock)

The final two movies in the “Sharknado” series were released in 2017 and 2018.

6. “The Meg”

“The Meg” features Hollywood stars Jason Statham, Li Bingbing and Ruby Rose. The film premiered to audiences in 2018. 

The cast of “The Meg” discover a dangerous shark called a Megalodon. The massive prehistoric animal is thought to be extinct.

The sequel to “The Meg,” “Meg 2: The Trench,” was released in 2023. 

7. “Shark Tale”

“Shark Tale” is an animated film featuring major Hollywood stars like Will Smith, Robert De Niro, Jack Black, Martin Scorsese, Renée Zellweger and Angelina Jolie.

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The comedy follows the small fish Oscar, Will Smith’s character, as he pretends to have killed a mob boss’s son.

"Shark Tale" movie premiere

“Shark Tale” is a fun, animated film ideal for families. (Evan Agostini/Getty Images)

When the father of the murdered great white shark, Frankie, comes looking for Oscar, he has to get clever while escaping an ill fate.

8. “Deep Blue Sea”

This 1999 film is a shark-filled story gone awry.

In the film, a group of scientists conducts experiments on DNA-altered sharks with the intent of finding a cure for Alzheimer’s disease. 

In the midst of experimentation, the sharks gain intelligence and begin to fight back against the humans. 

Among the main cast of this movie are actors Thomas Jane, Saffron Burrows and Samuel L. Jackson. 

9. “Bait”

2012 brought audiences the action-packed shark film, “Bait.” 

In the movie, a group of trapped individuals become shark bait after they find themselves stuck in a grocery store after a tsunami hits.

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The thriller stars Xavier Samuel, Sharni Vinson, Adrian Pang, Yuwu Qi, Alex Russell, Phoebe Tokin and more.

10. “Open Water”

This 2003 shark film is loosely based on a true story. 

The film is a fictional account of the story of Tom and Eileen Lonergan, an American couple who get left behind by their tour boat in shark-infested waters while visiting the Great Barrier Reef in 1998. 

No one really knows the events that ensued during the time the couple was left alone in the ocean, but the story as a whole was inspired by their tragedy. 

In the movie, their names are changed to Susan Watkins and Daniel Kintner, played by Blanchard Ryan and Daniel Travis. 



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