Animal attack movies have always held a strong fascination with the movie going public, and it is not hard to understand why. While animal attack movies are often ferociously scary and gory, they tap into a part of our minds that we do not usually visit. Anytime a movie takes you someplace new in your mind, then it is generally going to be considered a good one. The best animal attack movies are those that not only take us someplace new, but they also make us laugh, cry, or otherwise cheer. Here are the best animal attack movies of all time.
Jaws – Animal attack movies will always begin and end with Jaws. If you are old enough to remember the panic that this movie set off in the late seventies, then you understand where I am coming from. Few movies in history have had such a direct effect on the viewer. Jaws literally caused an entire nation of people to avoid the water, and think twice about ever returning. Ironically, the movie is far from a good example of true great white behavior. The great white is not typically going to grow to 25 feet, and they certainly are not going to go on a feeding frenzy with an entire town. Still, the movie dove into the animal attack arena with a huge splash, and seemed just real enough to make us believe.
Lake Placid – Lake Placid makes no bones about trying to be over the top, and that is what makes it work. Crocodiles are literally man-eaters, and will go after you in a second if you give them the chance. They will not, however, eat helicopters, grow 50 feet long, or show up in an American lake without help. The movie is silly on purpose. The addition of Oliver Platt for comic relief insures that the movie is funny, and the script is hilarious. If you want some light hearted, animal attack movie fun, then Lake Placid is your movie.
Anaconda – Much like Lake Placid, but without the humor, anaconda made the cut simply because it was a really neat movie. The storyline was actually pretty good, and Jennifer Lopez played a pretty strong leading lady. The fact that the movie is loaded with great snake action is sure to play to the herpetology crowd, while the nail biting tension will take care of the rest. Anaconda is over the top with the size and capabilities of the snakes, but it is still great animal attack fun.
Open Water – This animal attack movie is unique in that it focuses heavily on the reality of animal attacks. A unique situation puts people at risk, and the result is horrifying. The movie is based on a true story about a couple that goes deep sea diving, gets left behind when the boat leaves, and then is helplessly floating in the middle of the sea. From jellyfish to sharks, this movie has it all. It is haunting from start to finish, and will leave you thinking for a very long time.
Animal attack movies are successful for many different reasons. Sometimes they are realistic, sometimes over the top, and sometimes they are just downright funny. Regardless, they are entertaining; and that is exactly why we go to the movies.