Classic Movie Trailer: Jaws (1975)

JAWS

Flick Nation Presents … a selection of curated classic movie trailers.

And when we say “classic,” that doesn’t mean the movie was necessarily good, but has endured the test of time. Sure, maybe it’s one of the greatest flicks ever … or maybe it’s a movie that’s so awesome that it should have endured. Either way, consider the next two minutes of your life as homework for your streaming queue.

Jaws is the Quint-essential (see what we did there?) summer blockbuster that holds up 40 years after first freaking people out about sharks!

Jaws is a 1975 American film directed by Steven Spielberg and based on Peter Benchley’s 1974 novel of the same name. The prototypical summer blockbuster, its release is regarded as a watershed moment in motion picture history. In the story, a giant man-eating great white shark attacks beach-goers on Amity Island, a fictional New England summer resort town, prompting the local police chief to hunt it with the help of a marine biologist and a professional shark hunter.

The film stars Roy Scheider as police chief Martin Brody, Richard Dreyfuss as oceanographer Matt Hooper, Robert Shaw as shark hunter Quint, Murray Hamilton as Larry Vaughn, the mayor of Amity Island, and Lorraine Gary as Brody’s wife, Ellen.

The screenplay is credited to both Benchley, who wrote the first drafts, and actor-writer Carl Gottlieb, who rewrote the script during principal photography. Now considered one of the greatest films ever made, Jaws became the highest-grossing film of all time until the release of Star Wars (1977). It won several awards for its soundtrack and editing. Along with Star Wars, Jaws was pivotal in establishing the modern Hollywood business model, which revolves around high box-office returns from action and adventure pictures with simple “high-concept” premises that are released during the summer in thousands of theaters and supported by heavy advertising.

It was followed by three sequels, none with the participation of Spielberg or Benchley, and many imitative thrillers. In 2001, Jaws was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the United States National Film Registry, being deemed “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.

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