If you think “Santa Jaws” sounds bat shit nuts and bonkers, then you’d be correct. I don’t typically check out Syfy original movies anymore but what with “Santa Jaws” I had to give it a fighting chance. It’s not often we get a Christmas themed killer shark movie, that’s also a movie about reclaiming the Christmas spirit. No seriously, that’s what “Santa Jaws” is about. “Santa Jaws” has its large tongue firmly planted in its cheek and at no point considers itself a serious horror movie in the vein of “Jaws” or even “Piranha.”
Cody is an imaginative comic book nerd and aspiring artist who draws his top secret comic book “Santa Jaws.” After being forced to attend a family reunion for the holidays, he endures insufferable relatives which include a senile grandfather, and an uncle who is dating an annoying internet model (Haviland Stilwell is a scene stealer). After Cody is grounded he is sent to his room and accidentally finds a magical pen that he begins scribbling his comic with. The pen brings to life the deadly Santa Jaws, a predator who begins stalking and eating Cody’s extended family. Meanwhile Cody is trying to prove the shark is around, and is on the hunt for his original comic.
The whole premise is silly and ridiculous, but it’s at least kind of fun. Especially when you consider that the movie seems to be filmed during the summer, and Cody and his family are all walking around in Christmas sweaters and… that’s about it. Considering the budget, the special effects from Composite Effects is respectable at best, in spite of the attacks being launched off screen. The shark itself is distinguished by its Santa hat on its fin, lights around its body, and its jingle bell sounds that almost make him sound like the croc from “Peter Pan.” The film doesn’t stop there, as there’s a ton of Christmas themed plot devices and elements, from a drunken sailor dressed as an elf, to a showdown with the shark set to Christmas Muzak.
“Santa Jaws” is as fun as you’re willing to allow it to be, and I went in to it with rock bottom expectations. In the end, I got a fairly decent horror comedy with a hilarious sense of humor about itself. Now let’s see a sequel “Santa Jaws vs. the Hallowhale”!