Absolute Horror Wiki
Advertisement

Greatwhite1.jpg

Great White (a.k.a. The Last Shark; Italian: L'ultimo squalo) is a 1981 Italian horror film directed by Enzo G. Castellari, starring James Franciscus and Vic Morrow. In the film, a horror novelist tries to save hundreds of swimmers in a coastal resort after a large great white shark starts terrorizing the area.

The film did well at the box office, grossing over $18 million in its first month in the United States; however, its North American release was later blocked after the filmmakers were accused of plagiarizing Jaws (1975).

Plot

While wind-surfing near the seaside community of Port Harbor, a young man is killed by a giant great white shark. Horror author Peter Benton and professional shark hunter Ron Hamer realize the truth, but ambitious mayor William Wells refuses to accept that a shark threat exists, fearing that a cancelled wind-surfing regatta would derail his campaign to become state governor. Wells has shark nets installed, but the sounds of teenagers splashing in the surf leads the shark to rip through the nets. The next day, the shark plows through the wind surfers, knocking them off their boards, before targeting the mayor's aide and eating him.

Wells can no longer hide the truth and Benton and Hamer head out to sea, planning to feed the shark dynamite and cause it to explode. However, the shark traps them in a cave and the men have to use their dynamite just to escape. Meanwhile, Benton's daughter Jenny and some of her friends head out on a yacht, armed with some steak and a shotgun, intending to shoot the shark. Instead, its powerful bites on the bait knock Jenny into the water. Her friends pull her back on board, but the shark bites off one of her legs in the process. Mayor Wells's son was one of the friends she went out with and Benton blames him for her injury. Determined to do something right, Wells sets out in a helicopter armed with a steak, apparently intending to hoist the shark into the air and suffocate it, but the shark is too powerful; when it bites into the steak dangling from a winch, it shakes the copter and knocks Wells into the sea. The shark then bites him in half before lunging into the helicopter, dragging it into the sea.

Benton and Hamer go back out to blow up the shark. After an argument, Benton agrees to allow Hamer to be the one to go down with the dynamite strapped into a belt around his waist. Thinking the shark might be hiding in the downed helicopter, Hamer investigates it. The shark sneaks up on him and attacks and, despite Benton's attempts to save him, Hamer becomes wrapped up in a line and is towed to his death by the shark.

Meanwhile, a shark hunter chains some spare ribs to the side of a dock. The hunter, a TV news cameraman and some spectators go stand on the dock when the shark takes the ribs, towing the dock out into the ocean. Suddenly, the shark begins to attack the dock, knocking the people into the water and eating the shark hunter and TV cameraman. Benton arrives and rescues the other people but gets trapped on the dock when the shark arrives to drag it further out to sea. Hamer's corpse floats by and Benton feeds it to the shark. Realizing he has the detonator in his hand, Benton leaps into the ocean and flips the switch, detonating the dynamite and blowing the shark's head off.

Back on shore, Benton is approached by TV reporter Bob Martin for comment. Benton then punches Martin, gets in a car and drives away.

Advertisement