Jason Statham Stars in the Shark Thriller “The Meg”
By Liz Lopez
Directed by Jon Turteltaub (“National Treasure,” “Phenomenon”), “The Meg” appears to be a ’70s disaster movie that no doubt will have many viewers finding themselves reminded of “Jaws” that was released during the summer of 1975. “The Meg,” an action sci-fi horror adventure film features a prehistoric shark thought to be extinct. The screenplay by Dean Georgaris, Jon Hoeber and Erich Hoeber may have been written with the intent to be the deep sea horror film of the year, but unfortunately it is predictable in many ways. Starting with the similarities to “Jaws” that it is tagged with, several scenes reminded me of other more recent water related disaster films that I won’t spend time listing names.
Now having said this, it by no means should be interpreted that I don’t like the film! After all, Jason Statham stars as deep sea expert rescue diver, Jonas Taylor, who is called in to help with the killer creature. Taylor is reluctant to accept getting involved with the issues at Mana One, the underwater research facility, but it is not long before he is on the road. Statham brings in the much needed lift to the film to kick off the real action that he is known for. One of the more heroic scenes features Statham swimming out toward the shark to shoot a tracking dart into its fin, after other multiple attempts to stop or kill it. The audience will find there is plenty of suspense waiting to see if this effort will finally work.
There is an ensemble of characters at Mana One. Morris (Rainn Wilson) is the billionaire financing the lab, and his performance as the perfect jerk does not leave the audience enamored of him, nor care about his health and safety in the long run. Jessica McNamee plays Statham’s ex-wife, Lori, one of the crew members that initially depart from the sea lab for a deep sea exploration. Robert Taylor (Longmire TV series) stars as Heller, the medical doctor on board. Zhang (Winston Chao) leads the crew, including his daughter Suyun (Li Bingbing), a single mother to young Meiying (Sophia Cai) who both are definitely interested in Noah. Additional cast includes: Cliff Curtis, Page Kennedy, Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Masi Oka.
The cast all give standard performances to make this an enjoyable escape from the summer heat. Some viewers will find it entertaining, with the action as the large fin approaches, ready to strike at any target it sets its eyes upon, weather it means going through windows, cages or leaping out of the sea to break apart boats with just one strike.
“The Meg” has enough thrills, blood and guts to create quite the fright, even if you are just sitting in your theater seat!
The film has a PG-13 MPAA rating, with a running time of 113 minutes. The film is in theaters August 10, 2018.
Source: Warner Bros. Pictures