Worst. July. Fourth. Holiday. Ever. That’s what happens on Amity Island (as played by Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts) when hungry Bruce the Great White Shark stops by for a holiday picnic of unsuspecting tourists and locals. Okay, you’ve seen Steven Spielberg’s classic monster movie/fish tale many times, but watch it again, and you’ll catch how expertly he builds the terror over the course of the first half of the movie, from a single apprehensive swimmer to a few nervous merchants and officials, to an entire community caught up in mass panic. No wonder the movie so effectively scared countless tourists away from beaches worldwide during the summer of 1975 – and maybe for a generation afterward.
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