The Meg Review
What’s It About?
A supposedly extinct giant shark emerges from the depths to wreak havoc – but there may be one man who can stop it…
Who’s In It?
Jason Statham (The Expendables 1-3, Fast & Furious 6-8, & more recently Spy)
If you’ve got The Stathe, then who else do you need? But if you insist…
Rainn Wilson (The Office, Juno, Super)
Bingbing Li (The Forbidden Kingdom, Resident Evil: Retribution, & more recently Transformers: Age Of Extinction)
Director: Jon Turteltaub (Phenomenon, National Treasure 1-2, & more recently Last Vegas)
After a fabulous marketing campaign involving The Stathe taking on a giant shark, who could fail to get excited? Yes it may not have looked like the biggest budget movie, and the plot looked quite a bit thinner than Christian Bale in The Machinist, but forget all that. This was a tale of man against beast. And not just any man, this was Jason Statham. And not just any beast. This was a prehistoric giant shark known as a Megalodon. What’s not to love?
So the story, limited though it may be, saw Jason Statham, as a man hiding from the world after things went wrong underwater a number of years before. Crew died, he saw a monster, people thought he was crazy. Let’s not talk about.
Unfortunately some deep sea research scientists get into hot water (well freezing actually) after finding a hidden and hitherto unexplored trench in the ocean – deeper than any yet found. Needless to say, it just so happens to be home to a number of giant sea creatures including The Megalodon, who causes havoc, before deciding to pack his passport and trunks and head to Thailand for some R&R plus some serious human consumption. Cue the return of The Stathe.
Well that’s the set up. Little else is explained or really needs to be known. The support cast are very much that – the love interest, the cute kid, the cannon fodder, with the only exception being a deliciously over-the-top Rainn Wilson as the billionaire owner and total crazy.
While a film like this cannot be judged too harshly, and Statham has developed his own genre with monosyllabic tough guys immersed in tricky situations with weak dialogue, it would seem that director Jon Turteltaub has missed a trick with this one. Statham is a little more subdued than usual, with comparatively few moments of pure sparkle, while the shark is equally underused and underfed and seemingly a little picky too.
Turteltaub decision to go for a more serious tone with some characterisation and emotion, when in all honesty a blood fest or wholly tongue-in-cheek approach might have been more fun and certainly more memorable.
As a result, The Meg is entertaining enough, but is not bad enough to be kitsch, and not good enough to be, well, good.
In A Nutshell:
The Meg is too serious, when a blood fest or wholly tongue-in-cheek approach might have been more fun.
Stathe taking on The Meg
The corseted nature of the film
Certificate: 12 / 12A