So in the late 70's Universal Studios started up the worlds first movie themed theme park with huge success. They created some of the most unique rides and attractions all based around famous films such as King Kong, Earthquake and of course Jaws.
Like the movie the Jaws ride it self had difficulties with mechanical Sharks not working and a lot of the time this ride would be under maintenance on a daily basis. The ride was shut down in January but today on Lost Entertainment you can ride the Jaws ride one last time on this virtual tour!
So they created a mini Amity Island area on the theme park to house this ride. The area covered is quite large and has lots of references to the movie with hanging Sharks and other paraphernalia. You follow the path down to Jakes Boating Tours where you begin to line up.
Before getting on board we must check the safety warnings. These things really make me chuckle especially the heart condition and expectant mothers part. I guess Universal have to cover them selves but the mind does really boggle at such situations. I wonder if there ever was an incident where a guy came in and complained because his mother had a heart attack and his wife had a miscarriage when the rubber shark burst out of the water? Still safety first I guess.
It is a 25 minute wait but that is bearable really. If you have ever been to a theme park in the UK you will understand why 25 minutes is not so bad. Most UK theme parks have 2 hour plus waits and if you pay another £5 you can cut that down to an hour.
So while you wait you get to see the people who were in front of you in the line make their sea born voyage. They are all smiles and waving now but they wont be in five minutes when that giant rubber shark gives them some abuse.
This is on the wall during the line. Alex Kintner was the little boy who got chomped in the first Jaws movie while on an inflatable raft. Maybe if he had listened to his mother when she told him to come out of the water when his fingers were pruning then he would still be alive today. He would also be about 45 now.
So it is now time to board the ride which is a boat like the one Willy Wonka has and is captained by an awful actor. I must say though my heart does go out to these people who every 15 minutes have to pretend they are petrified of a rubber Great White Shark they have seen about 20 times that day.
Before the ship makes its voyage the skipper informs us how he is prepared for any shark attacks by holding a grenade launcher above his head. Imagine if you got on a bus or a plane and just before it departed the pilot/driver pulled out a giant gun and told us how he would stop any would be hijackers. It would put my mind at ease and would also be a great addition to the safety instructions from the air stewards.
While giving us all a tour and making everybody wave at Chief Brodys house the captain gets a mayday call over his radio. The mayday call isn't to inform him that Chief Brody died from not wanting to take part in the God awful Jaws: The Revenge but something even worse.
HAHA it turns out the boat in front that waved at us earlier got all kinds of messed up by a giant shark. Oh dear lets hope no pregnant elderly women were on board that also suffered from epilepsy and back problems. Note the Orca from the original Jaws movie in the background. Didn't that sink?? I don't know what kind of messed time warp is going on here but I likes it.
The iconic "duh nah" Jaws music starts playing and a giant fin pierces the surface of the water. Everyone on board the boat looks on without any fear or caution what so ever.
The captain decides its time to give the shark some grenade launcher action. So I guess even though this must be a grueling job having to do this act over and over again the use of a grenade launcher must be a plus.
The grenade shot missed so this guy is no chief Brody. I have heard many stories from people over the years of this part of the ride glitching where the grenade launcher is fired and there is an explosion on the other side of the boat.
We are then taken to a boat house nearby but we are not in the boat house alone. And would you believe it, the engine breaks.
Barrels start exploding, paint tins come flying off shelves and Jaws makes a lunge for the boat. Does Jaws have psychic powers to make all of these things happen?
We manage to escape the boat house and chief Brody radios in to tell us he will be there in ten minutes. I guess thats how long it takes him to come back from the afterlife to fight massive sharks.
With that the shark pops out to say hello once again and swims past. Everyone on the boat laughs and no one screams.
With that even more disaster strikes when loads of gas cylinders explode near a gas station. Its almost as if the rides designers are saying "if the giant rubber shark doesn't scare em then lets blow some shit up! everyone loves explosions and fire".
The captain drives the boat to a nearby dock where we can all escape with our lives and our dignity. However I do believe there will be another shark attack in the coming moments.
With that Jaws pops up again but this time he takes a chunk out of a nearby electrical cable. If anyone has seen Jaws 2 then you will know where this ones going. The shark takes a grenade to the face for good measure.
The charred remains of Jaws pop out of the water for one more fright before the boat docks and then another load of tourists can endure five minutes of slapstick grenade launching/shark madness. The boat docks, everybody cheers and the captain tells us to keep this whole shark episode on the down low. Well I have just broken that promise by sharing the whole incident with the world.
On January 2nd of this year the Jaws ride closed forever and this caused an uproar with fans all over the world. Even though it was a tacky as hell theme park ride it was something which so many people loved going on as a kid and something they enjoyed taking their own kids to experience.
The Jaws ride during the 1970's.
If you thought the recent footage of the Jaws ride looked bad check out the 1970's version of the ride. When the ride closed its doors Universal made a big deal of the event and it was packed with people wanting one last ride through Amity Island. Here is footage of the final night of Jaws the ride.
RELATED LOST ENTERTAINMENT POST'S