on April 23, 2007
This movie is great. It's very funny and gives a good message. Like Dreamworks other movie, 'Madagascar,' it becomes too mature for its target audience, therefore this is not really a film for small children. In fact, adults and teenagers will like this one the most. I think Will Smith is very funny as Oscar - his expressions were priceless!
Now why do people think this is some kind of rip off of Finding Nemo. Lets take a look at the similarities and differences:
*They both had vegetarian sharks.
*They both take place under the ocean.
*Finding Nemo is more realistic and takes place on a reef with natural colours. Shark Tale tries a more artistic approach, making it more like a city with shops and apartments. The characters use phones, order pizzas etc.
*There are no humans in ST (apart from an anchor). Whilst with FN, humans were a main part of the story.
*ST is slightly more aimed at older children, teenagers and adults.
*The plots are totally different.
Comparing these two is like comparing apples and oranges. To be honest, I prefer Shark Tale over Finding Nemo. That's just my opinion. I think it is unfair to give Shark Tale a bad review just because it is something it was never intended to be.
Oscar (Smith) the fish leads a normal life. He is just an average guy working at the Whale Wash. One day, he wanders into shark territory and is chased by Frankie. Unfortunately for Frankie, the chase ends in his death, not at Oscar's hands, but by pure accident. Oscar sees as an opportunity to "be someone", and quickly takes the credit. The fish world begins to call him the "Shark Slayer", two female fish begin to show their interest, and the shark godfather (DeNiro) makes it his business to find the murderer of Frankie...his son.
"Shark Tale" is yet another animated movie that will appeal to both children and adults. The difference is, this time it almost seems made for adults first and kids second. The most obvious references are to "The Godfather" and "Goodfellas", two movies that no kids should have seen. Also, advertising placement has run amok in this movie. Every way you turn in the city, there are obvious "fake ads" for real products that is very distracting. Most everything in this movie is overkill, in fact.
The voice talents are credible and the animation is good, although I found Oscar to look kind of creepy with his near human-looking face. "Shark Tale" also is nothing like "Finding Nemo", which is both good and bad. Good, because it is not retreading material that is not too old yet. Bad, because "Finding Nemo" was so much better. "Shark Tale" is a decent movie that will be enjoyed by most, and I did laugh a number of times while viewing it, but my advice is to wait for DVD.
on June 30, 2007
Great voicework, a fun story, romance plus suspense, lots of sight gags, movie-fan in-jokes, fine animation and a great soundtrack. That's "Shark Tale" in a nutshell.
I can't figure out why people comparing this to "Finding Nemo." They are not alike, and comparisons really are pointless. In fact, Shark Tale is stylistically distinct from most other animated films of recent years. It also has its own brand of humor, which is funny in ways quite unlike the typical Pixar/Disney offering we've gotten used to.
Shark Tale is informed by urban culture, which is why *this* reef is traversed by buses (whales) and police cars (orcas), and has a giant screen TV above it all, featuring live news feeds, commercials, and so on. It's much, much closer to the "real" world of humans than one is used to seeing.
In Finding Nemo, one can't recognize the face of Albert Brooks in Marlin the cartoon fish. But in this movie, Oscar is physically reminiscent of Will Smith, Don Leno really reminds one of Robert DeNiro, and Sikes is, somehow, a dead ringer for Martin Scorsese.
In my view, this adds to the humor and the fun. Don Leno is written as a broad cariacature of Mafia dons, and DeNiro has of course played the ultimate human version -- Don Corleone, in the Godfather trilogy. There are other movie in-jokes all over the place.
A gang of shrimp, formerly destined for Don Leno's dinner, escape -- and when they later find a chance to attack Don Leno, the head shrimp says "Say hello to my little friends" -- a line from Al Pacino's famous turn in Scarface, made hilarious by the oddball new setting.
When Oscar defeats Lenny in a staged fight, and poses for the news cameras to publicize his new role as the Sharkslayer, he recites other movie lines that are inane, even surrealistic in this context, like "You can't handle the truth" (Jack Nicholson's line from A Few Good Men), and then "You had me at hello" (Renée Zellweger's line from Jerry Maguire).
The latter line demonstrates just how shallow Oscar is (he can't even come up with original words to boast with), while showing how mindless and uncritical the crowds are (they cheer the line despite its nonsensicality). Meanwhile, it's an inside joke for movie viewers who note that Ms. Zellweger is in this film, too, playing Oscar's "true" love interest, Angie.
Sikes' henchmen are two jellyfish, and the filmmakers depicted them as Jamaican rasta men, with tentacles in lieu of long dreadlocks. They then typecast reggae stars Ziggy Marley and Doug E. Doug in the roles. They're perfect as the character voices, while also providing great music for the soundtrack.
The film's distinctive style may cause one to overlook the skill that must have been required to depict all these characters as fish, with more-or-less realistic swimming motions, who nevertheless manage goofy slapstick right out of vaudeville. If you pay attention you notice Don Leno's consigliere, Luca, pouring a cup of tea -- which, of course, flows out of the cup and into the surrounding water before Luca can drink it. I mean, this kind of stuff is silly, but (in my view) is funny mostly because nobody in the film calls attention to it.
The ONLY reason I held back from five full stars is because it really isn't appropriate for the very young -- like, under six or seven at least (in my view). I find it frustrating at how hard it is to find a good animated film that doesn't have a lot of violence or adult themes. There is a fair amount of fighting and other types of conflict, which some kids might be used to -- but in any case, now you know.
Bottom line, it's a fun film that stands up to repeat viewing, and if the parents approve it for their kids, it's perfect for whole-family movie nights. Hint: get ready to dance when the music rolls over the end credits!
on March 30, 2016
First I want to say that this movie came to me fast and in excellent condition.
Underachiever Oscar (Will Smith) is a pint-sized fish with grand aspirations. When mob-connected great white shark Frankie (Michael Imperioli) is accidentally killed, Oscar concocts a story with Frankie's peace-loving brother Lenny (Jack Black) that it was he who murdered the shark. Suddenly hailed "Sharkslayer" by his aquatic brethren, Oscar has bigger fish to fry when Frankie's father, mob boss Don Lino (Robert De Niro), dispatches his henchmen to track down his son's killer.
Doesn't quite sound like a cartoon but it is, and it happens to be one of my daughters favorites. She has been fascinated by it since she was 3. It's one of the only movies she would sit still for. Her old copy got lost so we bought her a new one. Did I mention she is 15 now? 😂
This great movie also stars the voices of Angelina Jolie, Renee Zellweger, Martin Scorsese, Peter Falk, and many others.
on June 30, 2005
Set on a reef that resembles a pulsating, bustling, underwater Manhattan, "Shark Tale" is a reasonably diverting DreamWorks film that makes up in charm what it lacks in Shrek-level sophistication. Lets' face it: the "Shrek" movies have set the bar awfully high for animated features and it's hard not to compare every new one that comes our way with those earlier works. Even with that caveat, "Shark Tale" still manages to involve us in the world it's created and to make us laugh from time to time.
Lenny (voiced by Jack Black) is the ultimate evolutionary anomaly - a great white shark who just happens to be a vegetarian. This is a particularly dicey problem because Lenny is no ordinary, run-of-the-mill shark; he is the son and heir apparent of a Don Corleone-type mob boss (Robert De Niro) who worries that his son may not have what it takes to assume his rightful place as "godfather" of the sea. Down at the very opposite end of the food chain is Oscar, a fast-talking, self-described "little fish in a very big pond," voiced by none other than mega-star Will Smith. All his life, Oscar has felt like an unappreciated "nobody," until, one day, through an utter fluke of fate, he inadvertently finds himself heralded as a fearless "shark slayer," a position that gets him into deep trouble when De Niro and his henchmen descend on the reef looking to stir up a little trouble with the defenseless locals..
"Shark Tale" doesn't have quite the sharpness and wit of certain recent animated films, but it is fast-paced and clever enough to keep us entertained for most of its running time. Many of the gangster movie references may be lost on younger viewers, but adults will smile in knowing recognition at the gentle bits of parody thrown in from time to time (we finally get to see that Luca's been doing more than just sleeping with the fishes all these years). The film is lovely to look at, with the urban aquatic landscape beautifully rendered in multi-colored splendor. The three leading actors provide lively and energetic voice work and they are matched by Renee Zellweger, Angelina Jolie, Martin Scorsese and Katie Couric in somewhat lesser roles.
As stated before, "Shark Tale" is no "Shrek" in either the cleverness or laughs departments, but it should keep young and old alike entertained if not exactly enthralled.
on April 10, 2016
LOVE this movie, My niece has fallen in Love with Turtle Tails, so I figured this would be a change of pace for her, now she demands to watch Shark Tale, instead of Turtle Tails lol I've always been a big fan of Will Smith, this just made me like him that much more. The Cast for this Movie is excellent, and each fish matches perfectly to the voice of each person. You and Your kids will LOVE this movie. Very funny!!
on January 1, 2006
It's my sons favorite movie. What more can be said? He watches it at least once a day, and he is 16 months. Nothing else captures his interest like this movie, I think it's the VIBRANT COLORS, and awesome graphics. This movie is really cute, and very realistic. The actors did an awesome job, the voices really add a lot of personality to the characters. It's also an all star cast, which I think makes it just that much better.. I personally think the movie is cute and funny. It also has a moral to it - I mean "you don't have to be rich and famous to be a somebody - what counts is what's on the inside, and for you to be happy" - and the one line that others may deem "inappropriate" is when Oscar says "Who in the Halibut trips under water?" It's hard to catch at first - because it is said so fast that you really have to listen for it to even catch it. There is obviously also the whole reference to the "godfather" which some might find inappropriate,.. in the end though - There is dialogue that is not much worse than that on t.v. nowadays! The rest of the movie has nothing "inappropriate" in it. If you are still hesitant, then it's at least worth a rental...
on July 16, 2015
I work with special needs children and they absolutely loved this movie! Bright animations, fun music, and most importantly.... it kept their attention throughout the whole movie! (I really enjoyed it as well)
on April 24, 2015
So many famous stars participated in this wonderful movie. The best part is that the sea characters actually look a bit like, and sound a bit like the real people!!!!! Watch it for a chuckle or two! Very entertaining.
on November 25, 2014
I like the movie & for the price it's cheap rainy day entertainment. My toddler loves fish movies so this was perfect for her to watch. I gave it a 4 because the whale grime at the car wash really grosses me out. Good cast, and I like how the fishes faces somewhat look like the voice actors.