She Gods of Shark Reef
SHE GODS OF SHARK REEF. 1958

Director: Roger Corman

Reviewed by Paghat the Ratgirl



A classy theme song under the opening credits, "Nearer My Heart to You" sung by British actress Sylvia Syms, lends the viewer momentarily to wonder if this is going to be less cheap & sleezy than expected. Not to worry, nothing that follows the song is anywhere near that nicely done.

A famously awful film shot in Hawaii, She Gods of Shark Reef originated as an hour-long filler feature for the Drive-in circuit. Since the beginning of the video era it has has been distributed with packaging implying a horror film or science fiction, perhaps set on an island with an amazonian tribe. It's really about a group of hired pearl diving women who worship a sunken stone head, kind of an ashram of beautiful girls devoted to a crazy old biddy. Their "tribe" was inspired by the ama woman pearl-divers of Japan.

The Island of the Pearl Diving Women is at most an Oceanic jungle adventure, & barely even that. The pearl divers work for the mysterious "Company" about which we learn nothing whatsoever. Two guys turn up on the island & have idyllic fun with the hoola girls.

One of the guys has blond hair & is nice; he likes walks on the beach & sailing, although his boat was destroyed in the shark reef. The other guy has dark hair & is a gun-running murderer laying low from the law. They're mutually handsome however, so both of them get one or another girl to fall madly in love with him, though only one girl ends up happy about it.

[SPOILER ALERT] The ashram's hag doesn't like her followers/laborers getting all horny for the boys. Claiming there's bad luck on the island she sets out to sacrifice the blond guy's girlfriend on the shark reef, & is doubly annoyed when he saves her via unsuspenseful swimming. The dark-haired guy steals the girls' pearls but is eaten by a shark & the good guy lives happily ever after with an island maiden. [END SPOILER ALERT]

It's as exciting as watching ice melt & I've no idea why some people put it in the "so bad it's good" category since really it's just bad. Maybe ya gotta get drunk first to appreciate it.

copyright by Paghat the Ratgirl



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