Woah, woah, woah – put down the harpoon gun and the orange buoys; I didn’t say the shark wasn’t important, it’s just that he’s just an allegory, a symbol.
Y’see, Jaws isn’t about the shark, but the economy.
It’s the tourists getting eaten that spurs everyone to action. It’s the threat of decreased sales and bankruptcy that prompt public outcries and demands for justice. Quint knows when to move in and get the business leaders by the short and curlies – when their wallets are gasping and their prospects are bleak. Yes, I know that Quint dies in the end; but it just drives things home even further, they didn’t have to pay him a dime and they got their economy back on track because that big bad recess-I mean shark got all blowed up nice and good. It’s a modern day fairy tale where profits are saved and consumers spend their hard-earned vacation money on overpriced fried clam baskets.
It’d make a good bedtime story for the kids. Excepting the naked college girl at beginning, some things are just fucking inappropriate.