Monday, January 29, 2024

The Meg (2018)

Streaming Service: MAX
Movie Name/Year: The Meg (2018) 
Genre: Action, Horror, Sci-Fi 
Length:  1h 53min 
Rating: PG-13
Director: Jon Turteltaub 
Writers: Dean Georgaris, Jon Hoeber, Erich Hoeber, Steve Alten 
Actors: Jason Statham, Ruby Rose, Jessica McNamee, Rainn Wilson, Bingbing Li, Robert Taylor, Cliff Curtis, Olafur Darri Olafsson, Masi Oka, Page Kennedy, Vithaya Pansringarm, Shuya Sophia Cai, Rob Kipa-Williams, Winston Chao 
IMDb Blurb: A group of scientists exploring the Marianas Trench encounter the largest marine predator that has ever existed - the Megalodon.
Cat’s Point of View: 
The Meg was one of those movies that I just HAD to watch the minute I was able to. I was practically bouncing up and down with eager anticipation. I’d been watching the media releases for this production ever since I stumbled upon the article that inspired my But I Digress…My What Big Teeth You Have article back in 2017. Selina and I both love creature features. Pair that with my love of sharks and shark movies, and it had become my automatic #1 on the Top 20 article the month it was released in 2018. (Selina had listed it as her #9 pick.)
At this point, I have actually watched The Meg many times over. It has become one of those familiar “comfort” movies that I will even watch from the middle if I come across it while flipping channels. Sometimes if I’m bored and just want something in the background it’s a good go-to.
I’m very disappointed in the negative reviews out there, really. I was actually shocked when I looked up the review rating scores on the various sites we use for comparisons. I am positive that I’m not just watching this movie through rose-colored glasses just because it involves megalodons and Jason Statham (Mechanic: Resurrection, Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre, Expend4bles). Those are 2 sizeable reasons I was drawn to the film in the first place, but not why I have enjoyed re-experiencing this movie over and over.
The Meg was a generally well-executed creature feature. Everything was streamlined well enough that it wasn’t too terribly hard to suspend disbelief about this allegedly extinct mammoth shark. (Seriously though, there are whole teams of real-world scientists studying to see if this giant scary creature of the deep may not be as extinct as we thought so we’re not really coloring that far outside the lines here.)
The effects were dazzlingly rendered, the underwater scenes were stunning, and the action was on point. There were moments of levity that broke up what otherwise would have been a non-stop thrill ride. While I see some critics slamming that, keep in mind that even Jaws (1975) had some comic-relief in it. The family aspect involved as well as the interconnected history of the characters coming into play was also interesting. Further, the individuals that went on to continue their story in the sequel The Meg 2: The Trench (2023) had a good foundation in this first film to grow from. (We’ll talk about the sequel another day, though.) I was also seriously impressed with Sophia Cai (Somewhere Only We Know, Mr. Corman, Meg 2: The Trench) in her role as Meiying. Sometimes you just don’t get as much depth from very young actors and she really stole most of the scenes she was involved in.
The Meg delivered everything it promised in its trailer. Was it perfect? No, but it didn't need to be. The Meg was a great popcorn movie. It was, however, a little less gruesome than it could have been had it not had the PG-13 rating. Sometimes those decisions are in the hands of the studios. In spite of that, both movies have done really well – igniting much hope for an extended franchise. At this time there’s no official word as to whether or not a 3rd installment will be made. There’s plenty of the source material to pull from still, however. The Meg was an adaptation from a popular series of novels, after all. (I also still need to get off the stick to read them.) Cross your fingers for me that we can visit the world of these mammoth megs in a 3rd installment, will you? I know I am.
If you enjoy shark movies and action with crazy stunts and a slice of comedy, The Meg will be right up your alley and there are multiple ways to stream it via subscription services as of the time of this review.
Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 47% 
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 44%
Metascore –  46% 
Metacritic User Score – 5.5/10 
IMDB Score – 5.7/10 
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating – 4.5/5
Movie Trailer:

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