I love the book this is based on. Big shark, big action, over the top page after page. Rules set down that make this absurd concept seem believable. Unfortunately, the movie changes so much of the book. As an adaptation of the book, it’s awful. However, taking the movie on its own this is lots of dumb fun.
Jason Statham is a rescue diver who had to let his teammates die to save others from some… thing that damaged a nuclear submarine. Years later his ex – coincidentally an oceanographer – is trapped in a research submarine that has gone past a layer of cold water into the deepest trench on Earth where a trapped ecosystem thrives. As a result of this rescue, a hole formed in the cold water layer allowing animals that couldn’t survive the cold water but can thrive above or below it to pass through. Animals like the giant prehistoric shark – the Meg.
Jason gets wrapped up with the entire research team and their billion dollar facility. Together they have to stop the Meg from becoming a threat to the world. In true movie serial style there is a dramatic moment every 5 minutes throughout the film. Crashes, crunches, swimming, darkness, destruction, lights, guns, everything. It is a great movie to stop all critical thinking and just enjoy.
The book was great because it had no budget constraints. Not that the characters leapt off the page but they all felt more fleshed out than the movie. Plus, the book could exist without any financial backing from China. The location, the love interest, the scientist in charge. All are worked in to create an attachment for an audience at the Chinese box office. I am all for every one having representation on screen and stories taking place across the globe. But to force a story to happen in one spot only because that’s the only way money will be guaranteed feels against the “purity” of the story. I know, I’m talking about purity of story for a movie about a giant shark. That’s me not being involved in the industry. Me thinking it should be as easy as saying “Giant shark movie? Sounds cool. Here’s money.” Thinking media works like that is more fictional than this surviving prehistoric monster picture.
If you want a fun, stupid movie to watch with friends maybe while in an altered state – you can’t go wrong with this one. But if you’re looking for something substantial, watch Jaws again.