The Meg

Each summer we are inundated with blockbuster after blockbuster, from superheroes to Star Wars, that have become the staples of summer movie going. What often lacks in today’s cinema is the big budget, B movie. Well, when you’re looking to fill the need, you only need two things — Jason Statham and a 70-foot shark.

Jonas Taylor (Statham) previously escaped the jowls of this terrifying creature, to the dismay of his crew. Submerged to depths never seen by humans, many perished under the guise of Taylor. Now scientists are back to continue the exploration of this unknown, underwater oasis.

Morris (Rainn Wilson), the billionaire who funded this entire project, is on hand to witness this groundbreaking feat. Unbeknownst to the three scientists who traveled into the ocean depths, something large is lurking to cause great harm to those in its territory.

Once trapped at the bottom of the ocean, Taylor, Heller (Robert Taylor) and Mac (Cliff Curtis) must seek out the drunken Jonas to help save the trapped crew members. Jonas is the last remaining diver to be able to control his mind and body to dive the 11,000 foot depths, but he is also the one who seen the Megaladon shark that is wreaking havoc. Heller and his band of characters that include a wise-cracking DJ (Page Kennedy) and tough girl Jaxx (Ruby Rose) must swallow their pride and admit what they are up against.

Upon evacuation, their celebration is cut short as the “Meg” has left the depths and is now on a war path to the coast of Japan. It is now up to the scientists to spring into action and keep this giant shark from killing everything in the water it sets its sights on.

In reality, what more are you looking for in a movie like “The Meg?” You go in wanting to see action star Statham versus a monstrous shark. Which is what you get. The problem that arises is the hour and 45 minutes running time “The Meg” needs to fill with plot. “The Meg” did was fill the scenery with a cast of characters that are hard to dislike. These characters are fun, smarmy and as ridiculous as the movie itself.

Problems do arise when the plot thickens outside of survival. Taylor’s ex-wife was one of the crewmen that needed saving on the ocean floor. All the while, Taylor’s affection is growing towards fellow diver Suyin, whose father works with the slimy billionaire Morris to get the results they want, by any means necessary.

These subplots are tedious and unnecessary as they bring little depth to any of the characters. I believe those behind “The Meg” were wanting the crowd to get behind the three protagonists. Unfortunately, the crowd will become more enthralled by the exterior, one note characters than the ones most seen on screen.

And why make a movie about shark attacks that is PG-13? It sure takes some of the bite out of the film (pun intended).

Grade: B-

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With a background in film history and studies, Dustyn Dubuque was formerly the film critic of River Falls Voice. He can be reached at dustyn.dubuque@hotmail.com

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Dunn County News editor

Barbara Lyon is the editor of The Dunn County News in Menomonie, WI.

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