What a genuine surprise Bait is. I rented this expecting cheesy 3D, bad dialogue, and some terrible CGI all being used to tell a lame story. Instead of the B-grade I expected, however, Bait is a film that legitimizes itself by combining a solid orchestral score with strong acting and decent dialogue. These elements make this otherwise implausible story feel realistic, creepy, and fun. The final ten minutes – where it turns into Rambo in water – are the only laughable parts of the movie, but everything leading up to it is strong enough that this is forgivable.
In Bait, a tsunami hits Australia, flooding the streets with shark-infested waters. This story follows a group of people who are stuck in an underground grocery store of sorts, and it too has flooded. These are the only remaining survivors. Their goal is to get out of the store alive, and the only thing stopping them is a couple great white sharks lurking in the shallow waters below them.
It sounds ridiculous because it is. That makes Bait even more successful because it somehow makes me believe what is going on here. How, ow why, this happens doesn’t really matter to me, but how they’re going to get out does. There’s even a love story thrown in for good measure!
There are some genuinely good actors in this, the best of whom was the star of Chronicle, a film I fell in love with back in June during my Cinefessions Summer Screams Challenge. His name is Alex Russell, and he’s a genuine talent. Really, though, there is no one that stands out as bad. There is one couple in the film who bring the comic relief, and though their characters are over the top, they are intentionally so, and it works rather well.
All around, Bait is one of the true surprises I’ve watched this year. The 3D effects look great on my new 3D TV, and the CGI is on par with some higher budget Direct-to-Video (DTV) films I’ve seen lately. If you can pick this up on the cheap, and are up for some shark hunting in a grocery store, definitely check this out. It’s better than most of the DTV garbage out there.
Branden has been a film fan since he was young, roaming the halls of Blockbuster Video, trying to find the grossest, scariest looking VHS covers to rent and watch alone in the basement. It wasn’t until recently, though, that Branden started seeking out the classics of cinema, and began to develop his true passion for the art form. Branden approaches each film with the unique perspective of having studied the art from the inside, having both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in acting. He has been a film critic since 2010, and has previously written for Inside Pulse Movies, We Love Cult, and Diehard Gamefan. His biggest achievement as a film critic, to date, has been founding Cinefessions and turning it from a personal blog to a true film website, housing hundreds of film and television reviews, and dozens of podcasts.