Man it’s a bad week for sharks at the movies. Following the trailer for Blake Lively Shoot A Shark, we now have the first trailer for USS Indianapolis: Men of Courage (totally unnecessary subtitle), starring Nicolas Cage fighting sharks. The story of the USS Indianapolis is one of history’s most badass survival tales, meaning it’s utterly horrible but full of bravery and incredible feats. It’s ripe for cinema, but this trailer is some cheeseball nonsense, starting with Nicolas Cage, whose name is not exactly synonymous with “quality”.
There’s all the stuff you expect to see in a World War II drama: Male bonding, white guys learning to appreciate and respect their black peers, a shoe-horned in romantic plot—no one gives a flying f*ck about this, ever—and ominous Morse-code tapping. There’s even bonus swing dancing! But the only part anyone is going to care about is the part with the sharks. The sinking of the Indianapolis would be tragic in and of itself, but what everyone really remembers is the part where the survivors were shark bait for five days. By the time they were rescued, less than one-third of the crew remained. Mother Nature is a mother*cker. The story of the Indianapolis is the sinking and the sharks, but there’s a lot of stuff in this trailer that isn’t sinking and sharks, which doesn’t bode well.
After Lainey mentioned that I was bugged by the buoy gun in The Shallows’ trailer, a reader named Maria Elena emailed to reassure me that buoy guns are totally real things. Apparently flare guns are regularly stored in buoys near reefs in case people run aground, so they can signal for help. This is useful information because the ocean is full of actual fact monsters and I appreciate knowing where any and all available weapons are at all times.