7 Movies Your Shark-Obsessed Kids Will Get a Kick Out of This Summer
Why is that we want to watch shark movies over the Summer, right before we're about to go on vacation? While adults might be able to kick back and watch Jaws or The Shallows and still be able to go back into the water afterward, it's a little more complicated when it comes to kids. If you have an aspiring marine biologist on your hands and would rather not scar them for life, we've rounded up everything from Finding Nemo to Shark Tale so they can get their shark fix, sans nightmares.
The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl
Long before Taylor Lautner had abs of steel or fought his first vampire, he played a half-human, half-shark hybrid named Sharkboy (creative, we know) in the 2005 fantasy-adventure flick The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl. It's not heavy on the sharks, per se, but it features some friendly, talking great whites who take Sharkboy under their fins after he loses his dad, raising him as one of their own. For once, sharks get to be the heroes.
Want to watch a movie that will satisfy your kid's love of sharks and your obsession with mafia movies? 2004's Shark Tale is probably as close as you're going to get. It stars Will Smith as Oscar, a little fish with big dreams, who teams up with peace-loving shark Lenny (Jack Black). The pair go on an adventure to escape the wrath of Lenny's dad, mob boss Don Lino (Robert De Niro), when Lenny's brother is accidentally killed and Don Lino thinks it's Oscar's doing. It's basically The Departed, but under the sea (OK, not really, but you get the idea).
Seeing Bethany Hamilton (played by AnnaSophia Robb) get her arm bitten off by a vicious tiger shark in Soul Surfer likely won't ease your child's fears about the ocean, but witnessing her determination to get back in the water and achieve her surfing dreams definitely will.
Not to be confused with the horror movie of the same name (which is also about sharks, so be careful), The Reef is an animated romp through the sea with Freddie Prinze Jr. and Evan Rachel Wood. The two play a pair of lovestruck fish trying to outwit the big, powerful sharks that rule their neighborhood, with the help of some comic relief from Andy Dick and Rob Schneider.
OK, you caught us, this isn't a movie. However, season one of Jabberjaw is still a cute, funny cartoon from the '70s, perfect for any pint-size shark-lover. The aquatic answer to Scooby Doo, Jabberjaw is a 15-foot great white with a goofy voice who fights crime while also rocking out with his band.
The Little Mermaid
"The Little Mermaid?" you might be wondering to yourself. "Do they really think my kid hasn't seen The Little Mermaid yet?!" Well, sorry, we have to include it on this list just in case. Plus, the chase scene with Ariel, Flounder, and the great white is pretty thrilling, don't you think?
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Of all the movies we've rounded up here, Finding Nemo probably boasts the most beloved set of CGI sharks. The endearing Australian trio are also the reason why your kids will use the phrase "Fish are friends, not food" against you when you try to serve them salmon at some point down the line (and for that, we apologize).