The Shark Thriller Lands With a Splash
Movie Director: Jon Turteltaub
First, let’s start with the first half of this movie. The first half of this movie is the cinematic equivalent of a brick. It’s boring, slow, soulless, and unnecessarily long, clocking in at almost two hours. The Meg begins so desperately wanting to be Jaws, complete with a mysterious unseen shark. Jack Morris (The Office’s Rainn Wilson) funds a Chinese science project tasked with exploring the Mariana Trench. Morris’ divers discover that the bottom of the Mariana Trench is, for plot reasons, not actually the bottom of the trench. This leads to the discovery of a new ecosystem beneath the trench, naturally where Megalodons come from. The divers are predictably attacked by an unseen force (seeing the jaws parallels yet?) and the sub is stranded. Enter Jason Statham.
Statham plays Jonas Taylor, an ex-rescue diver who encountered the titular Meg a few years before the movie. Statham is by no means a bad actor. In fact, his performance was enjoyable. However, the character he plays no different from his character in the Fast and Furious franchise.
While Jonas Taylor is being talked into saving the sub, Suyin (Li Bingbing) a scientist working with Morris, volunteers to save the stranded divers for some reason. As expected, Taylor saves her, the stranded sub, and escapes the Meg with only a few casualties.
Then the movie starts. The Meg escapes its ecosystem. Don’t ask me how. As expected, the titanic shark wreaks havoc upon the sea. This is what we came to see.
This is the chunk of the movie that is really “The Meg.” It’s campy. It’s stupid action. It’s filled with poor choices.
The research team’s first idea to deal with a 70 foot long prehistoric shark is to kill it. As one does. They shortly get word that several boats have been sunk near the research center. The researchers take a research vessel (a yacht with some computers in it) to hunt the Meg, but have not yet planned what actually do to kill the oversized shark. This goes about as well as you’d expect. Rinse and repeat for the rest of the movie.
This movie’s first half is garbage. It’s boring, stiff, and is trying to be Jaws. However, once the Meg starts Megging, the movie is great. It’s campy, although not too campy, the action is great, and Jason Statham is charming as always.