Monster movies are meant to be CGI spectacles that make for mindless fun flicks. ‘The Meg’ is no different with its straightforward premise. Hollywood’s obsession with sharks date all the way back to 1975, so this film is mainly an excuse for Jason Statham to take on a massive shark underwater. A big enough action star like Statham calls for a decent budget to be committed to this endeavour. This is evident as the CGI is a few notches higher to make it appear better than a B-grade flick.
Jason Statham knows exactly what he signed up for, and he has the right amount of fun playing Jonas Taylor, a retired rescue diver who is called back into action. Statham’s training as a diver comes handy here, and he commits to the role with a sincerity that does the film a huge favour. Chinese actors Li Bingbing & Shuya Sophia Cai have interesting chemistry with each other and are the only actors besides Statham to watch out for. The rest of the cast is practically redundant, and therefore dispensable. The screenplay doesn’t give the audience much to care about – the sentimental scenes don’t resonate too deep, and the comedy doesn’t hit home either. So when the scenes don’t involve sharks or the actors mentioned before, it’s hard to stay focused on the proceedings.
Perhaps the biggest drawback is the writing which does not narrow down on the film’s tonality. There are points where it takes itself a little too seriously, and others when it aims straight for cheesy popcorn blockbuster status. Little surprise then that director Jon Turteltaub doesn’t know what kind of film he’s making either. The momentum picks up towards the end when the monster mayhem escalates to bigger proportions, but it turns out to be too little, too late. Even if mega-sharks and Statham are enough to lure you to ‘The Meg’, check your expectations before you dive in.iew,The Meg