Review: The Last Sharknado: It’s About Time
Damn right it is. Picking up where the previous film left off, this one has hero Fin Shepard sent back in time by his son to Prehistoric times to put a stop to the first Sharknado (as opposed to the first “Sharknado”, if you understand). That doesn’t quite work out however, and Fin joins wife April (Tara Reid), as well as fellow time-travellers Nova (Cassandra Cserbo), Bryan (Judah Friedlander), and Skye (Vivica A. Fox) travelling through various points in time killing sharks.
Given the pageviews my reviews for this franchise tend to get, I’m not quite ready to say goodbye to this SyFy franchise. However, since the series peaked at the third one, it’s probably not a bad idea to put this thing to rest. This 2018 film from director Anthony C. Ferrante (the previous films) and screenwriter Scotty Mullen isn’t as fun as “Sharknado 3”, but it’s the next most enjoyable of the franchise. A distant second. None of these films is any good, none of them are even trying to be, which is part of the problem as making an intentionally bad film is very difficult. However, I can’t deny that this one has some amusing moments sprinkled throughout. The film is at its best in the prehistoric opener and the completely bonkers finale. The idea of a Jurassic Sharknado is pretty hilarious, as is the cheap-arse way the film gets around not having Dolph Lundgren repeat his fleeting role in the previous “Sharknado”. Judah Friedlander, meanwhile gets an amusing “Back to the Future” reference early on as well. There’s something good natured about it all, and aside from one cast member we’ll get to in a minute, the returning cast members (several playing characters who are supposed to have died, mind you) all seem to be getting into the right spirit by now, especially Vivica A. Fox, bringing a lot of sass and swagger whereas previously she looked bored and embarrassed. As for the plot, I wouldn’t call it accomplished or ambitious in the least, but it’s certainly outlandish which takes it quite a way. The music score is pretty good throughout, too.
I was a bit bored with the segment inexplicably set in Arthurian times (you guys know that’s not real history, right?), and it’s a real shame to see the lovely and talented Marina Sirtis relegated to appearing in something like this. However, any film that casts Neil Degrasse Tyson as Merlin can’t be worthless in my view. In fact, it’s downright hilarious to find the noted scientist in something like this. I was even less interested in the Revolutionary War segment with ‘Come Out and Play’ by The Offspring blaring. I actually took forever to get the gag (weird given I’m a fan), but I won’t spoil it for you. Darrell Hammond playing George Washington via Bill Clinton isn’t funny, nor Ben Stein playing Hamilton as Ben Stein, however I can’t deny the casting of Leslie Jordan as Benjamin Franklin is pretty cute. He’s the best thing about that segment, whilst metal notary Dee Snider is surprisingly good in the wild west segment as a lawman. The 1950s beach blanket bingo segment gives us Tori Spelling and her husband for the two people who care (each other), but as far as I’m concerned the cameos really do peak with Degrasse Tyson.
Aside from the opener, as I said the climax is the highlight here. We get a genuinely funny future society that Fox refers to as ‘Planet of the Aprils’ and really does focus on the film’s most fascinating quality: Whatever the fuck is going on with Tara Reid. The girl is…fascinating. Troubling perhaps, I mean she’s seemingly not doing so great these days. But…I couldn’t take my eyes off her in this. I’m pretty sure she’s the only one not in on the joke here. No, not that this is a bad film. She’s one of the producers, so I’m sure she knows this is kinda crap. It’s her performance that is the source of the most humour here. It’s abysmally frozen. Otherworldly. Like, I’m pretty sure she’s not just playing a robot, I don’t think she’s human anymore. Or maybe I’m actually wrong. Maybe she’s actually perfectly aware and is acting as directed. At any rate, when she’s on screen, everyone else is invisible.
In a lot of ways, this is probably the most competently made film in the franchise, but don’t let that fool you into thinking that this is anywhere near good, nor does it want to be. It’s tough to grade something like this because of what it is, but I can at least say that this is the second most entertaining of the series, albeit a distant second. It’s pretty insane, pretty terrible, and pretty watchable.