- Director:Kimble Rendall
- Cast:Lincoln Lewis, Julian McMahon, Xavier Samuel, Phoebe Tonkin
- Release Date:September 20, 2012
- Running time:93 minutes
- Film Worth:$14.00
- FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth
It succeeds as a gleeful piece of cinematic escapism delivering drum-tight thrills and superb effects, but the characterisation seems sadly as disposable as the film’s victims.
Australian director and musician Kimble Rendall describes his latest feature as “sharks in a supermarket,” and it's as good a summation as any of this unpretentious horror offering. In Bait 3D, sharks and supermarket come together as a result of a tsunami hitting Surfers Paradise (or somewhere very like it). These sharks might not be as big as Jaws, but they're just as vicious and insatiable, circling the handful of survivors who cower on top of shelves and cars in the deluged supermarket and its car park. Bait 3D is a great-looking film. The scenes in the gothic darkness of the submerged car park are particularly eerie. The effects are superb, taking every opportunity afforded by the 3D medium to fling underwater gore in the audience's face.
Characterisation is, as might be expected, very much a secondary concern. The film plays like an apocalyptic and gory episode of Home & Away. Its cast is more ethnically diverse than the average soap, but as is often the case with black characters in American horror movies, the two Asian men in Bait 3D might as well have "expendable" tattooed across their foreheads. As the heroic lead, Xavier Samuel manages to instil his character with some seriousness, while everyone else falls into crudely drawn stereotypes. There's Julian McMahon's Western-style outlaw in search of redemption, Phoebe Tonkin's delinquent daughter, Dan Wylie's unhinged larrikin, the bimbo, the jock and so on. While the film is in many respects brashly, even nostalgically, Australian, it still has a bet each way by having a sizeable portion of its cast slip in and out of half-hearted American accents.
Bait 3D doesn't take itself too seriously, and neither should its audience. Rendall and team have created a suspenseful ride that will almost certainly appeal to the younger viewers it targets. It's just a shame that there's such a discrepancy between the clunkiness of its dialogue and the sophistication of its effects.