I was a senior in High School...18 yrs old. We were jaded teenagers, laughed at it mostly. There's one moment designed to cause you to jump...and I did. If anything, the movie increased my interest in sharks and I spent some time reading about their biology, etc. We really didn't know much about them at the time. I read the book but don't remember if it was before or after the movie. LOL, I saw the Exorcist sitting behind a group of US Marines...who were, um, "drunk and disorderly". I was laughing at them laughing at the movie. No point being scared when two rows of the theater are chanting "PEA SOUP! PEA SOUP!"