50 Reasons Why Jaws Might Just Be The Greatest Film of All Time

6. The Genius of that €˜Vertigo€™ Shot

Completely defying the laws of physics, this classic distorted zoom in, track out shot, (nipped from Hitchcock€™s Vertigo), perfectly captures both the stunned reaction of Brody as he witnesses the first bloody beach attack and the subliminal sense of unease felt by the audience. Absolute genius! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svEPWBxpYjo €”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€“

7. That Poster

The beautiful simplicity of the Jaws poster is all down to clarity of theme and purpose. The image of a bather swimming on the surface of the water with the threat of an almighty predator beneath instantly establishes what Jaws is all about. Furthermore it would serve as a the benchmark for all other Blockbuster horror banners to follow - from Alien's cracked egg to The Exorcist's silhouette preacher to The Blair Witch Project's torch lit face. €”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€“

8. That Opening Attack

Arguably one of the most famous death scenes in movie history - the brilliance of Jaws' first attack is simply that the violence is purely implied. Susan Backlinie was the skinny-dipping bather who takes that fateful midnight swim. The silence is deafening, the sea an endless pool. Then all of a sudden...the whelping starts, the pathetic struggles for air, the sheer hopefulness of the situation is overwhelming as poor Chrissie is catapulted across the widescreen. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t21bLPhiZNs €”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€“

9. Location

The charming real life location of Martha€™s Vineyard provided the idyllic setting for Jaws. The picturesque suburban beach town with its fresh cherry-blossom coated housing and quaint secure boundaries of white-picket fences is the ideal location for Hitchcockian terror to strike! Just look at the examples set by the master of suspense in such sinister suburban thrillers as Shadow of a Doubt and The Birds. €”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€”€“

10. Drunk Sailors Scene

One of the finest examples of how a little time-out can work wonders to both enhance characters and evoke some depth (no pun intended) into a story. Night falls, three characters marooned on a vessel with no where to go and nothing to do but drink, banter and compare scars. And what an enjoyable time we have watching them. From Quint's classic "you wanna see something permanent..." quip to the subsequent scar contest with Hooper (gaining some much needed respect from the drunken seadog!) and the wonderfully hilarious 'Mary Ellen Moffit - she broke my heart' chestnut - all of which beautifully loosens up the characters and serves as an ingenuous set-up to that iconic Indianapolis Monologue...

Oliver Pfeiffer is a freelance writer who trained at the British Film Institute. He joined OWF in 2007 and now contributes as a Features Writer. Since becoming Obsessed with Film he has interviewed such diverse talents as actors Keanu Reeves, Tobin Bell, Dave Prowse and Naomie Harris, new Hammer Studios Head Simon Oakes and Hollywood filmmakers James Mangold, Scott Derrickson and Uk director Justin Chadwick. Previously he contributed to dimsum.co.uk and has had other articles published in Empire, Hecklerspray, Se7en Magazine, Pop Matters, The Fulham & Hammersmith Chronicle and more recently SciFiNow Magazine and The Guardian. He loves anything directed by Cronenberg, Lynch, Weir, Haneke, Herzog, Kubrick and Hitchcock and always has time for Hammer horror films, Ealing comedies and those twisted Giallo movies. His blog is: http://sites.google.com/site/oliverpfeiffer102/