"The Meg" Film Review
By: Nathaniel Simpson
Shark movies have always been a major staple in the horror blockbuster genre. Whenever a new shark film comes out, they draw huge crowds and either a general consensus that the film is tons of fun or that it's absolutely awful. Jon Turteltaub's 2018 film "The Meg" leans more towards the fun aspect, delivering a high-octane film that may not be the best, but it is simply such a fun time that can easily be rewatched over and over again.
The Megalodon shark has been extinct for millions of years... or so we thought. That is when the entire Mana One crew is very surprised when one of their vessels is trapped very far down in the Ocean, they recruit expert diver Jonas Taylor (Jason Statham), who is retired, to go down and save them. When he does and they successfully rescue the team members, Jonas now joins the team to help bring down the Meg before it attacks and kills millions of people.
What they don't expect however is the Meg to take the ocean by storm. The shark is much more powerful than they ever imagined, and they must combine all their resources to try and destroy this shark once and for all. However, there are members of their crew that care more about money and power than the value of human life, making it much more difficult for the crew to do their jobs.
This isn't "Jaws", nor does it try to be. Because of this, it's simply not the best. The story is sort of all over the place, the acting isn't the best (especially by some of the actors aboard the crew ship), and it just serves as a means to entertain for a few hours; the film does achieve the latter. It's incredibly entertaining, and will not only have the audience on the edge of their seat, but have them laughing out loud throughout. Statham and his cast, including Ruby Rose, Rainn Wilson, Cliff Curtis, and more, are great at being these fun characters that are just trying to destroy this iconic shark.
Statham is just fantastic at being this badass hero character. He plays characters like these throughout a lot of films he has starred in throughout his career, and each one is pretty much similar to each other. Even though he doesn't change much, it is simply hard to not like him here. Every line he delivers is soaked in charism and he just oozes charm whenever he is on the screen. He is definitely the best character present in the film, and I feel like some of the other actors simply don't hold up to his persona.
At the same time, I was honestly shocked by how good the CGI was here. There are numerous films where the CGI is awful when trying to craft these massive sharks that serve as the antagonists of these films; this shark here is very powerful and crafted beautifully. This looks like a massive shark, it acts like a massive shark, and it makes you simply believe the Meg has come back from extinction to terrorize beaches around the world.
I saw this film for the first time on opening night, and I rewatched this film a couple times since then. The most recent rewatch was for this review, which was right before the sequel to this film came out. With every rewatch, I find myself noticing things that are more glaring red flags. In theaters, I loved everything I saw and thought it was a great action blockbuster. I think because of my experience in the theaters watching this for the first time, this movie simply did its job incredibly well. This movie was meant for the biggest screen and to just have a fun time, which I did. It may not be as good as Spielberg's "Jaws" or as fun and hilarious as "Sharknado", but it's somewhere in the middle of those two.