Sometimes familiar Hollywood characters make the jump to Indian cinema — and occasionally they do so with a special effects budget that apparently consisted solely of old pistachio shells.

Such is the case with Aatank, a 1996 Bollywood film that's earned a reputation for cribbing the vicious shark attacks of Steven Spielberg's Jaws. But before we cast aspersions upon Aatank, we must ask, "Can this film stay afloat on its own merits?" This is a movie where a woman is consumed by a hungry shark in the middle of a song. What do you think?

First off, here's A.) Aatank condensed into fifteen minutes; and B.) a plot synopsis of this Hindi thriller via IMDB:

Bollywood Jaws is EVERYTHING you want in lifeS

Jesu and Peter are childhood friends who live in a coastal village in India and depend on fishing as their livelihood. The community is oppressed by a powerful gangster named Alphonso [...] Peter meets with Suzy D'Silva and they fall in love with each other, and get married. While enjoying a quiet swim on the seashore, Suzy disappears. A search is carried out, and a number of human body parts are recovered. With shock and horror this community finds that their livelihood is being threatened by a gigantic, virtually undestructible man-eating shark.

Let's start with the final scene above, in which action superstar Dharmendra tosses a harpoon through the villainous Alphonso and bisects the shark, Free Willy style. The shark — taking a cue from Jaws: The Revenge — frightens its prey by somehow screaming its lungs out. Just look at that chaos! But wait! Why is Dharmendra so irked at this monster?

Oh right, he ate that poor woman mid-warble — this goes down at 0:50 second mark. Sharks, they are The Gong Show of the animal kingdom.

There's also this small matter of a child sliding into the beast's mouth...

...and Dharmendra's pal getting digested to boot. You can read a full synopsis of Aatank here. For more toothy and toothsome fun, we have Japanese Jaws (who has no need for denouement), Turkish Jaws, and funky Jaws!

[Via Dangerous Minds]