mon 15/07/2024

Meg 2: The Trench review - into the jaws of tedium | reviews, news & interviews

Meg 2: The Trench review - into the jaws of tedium

Meg 2: The Trench review - into the jaws of tedium

Turgid pacing mars Jason Statham's return to the deep

Open wide: Jason Statham in 'Meg 2: The Trench'Warner Bros.

Big bitey sharks and prehistoric monsters have tantalised the imaginations of summer moviegoers for decades, from Jules Verne to Jaws. James Cameron’s Avatar 2: The Way of Water and the director’s recent scientific commentary on the OceanGate submersible disaster also serve to underline the public fascination with the dangerous deep.

Alas, Meg 2: The Trench, based, like its predecessor, on Steve Alten’s hit novels about hungry megasharks, bellyflops and bores. Too bad, because leading man Jason Statham can be a most droll and reliable hero even when the movie around him becomes defiantly silly.

After a jaunty prologue set in the Cretaceous era, in which assorted prehistoric creatures become fast food for ferocious predators (including a Megalodon shark), Meg 2: The Trench turns turgid, returning to the futuristic sealab setting of the first movie.

The top scientist (Wu Jin) envisions exploration (exploitation?) of the sea floor, while Statham’s ecowarrior character hunts ocean polluters. Then his teenage stepdaughter (Sophia Cai, pictured above) stows away on a deep sea mission gone wrong, and the explorers must don absurdly clunky looking metal suits to trudge their way to safety. It’s one of the slowest, murkiest escape sequences ever put on film.

Director Ben Wheatley saves some fun for the movie’s last half hour, when agitated megalodons, octopi, and other dino-things pursue our heroes to a fancy South Asian resort delightfully named Fun Island. By the time Statham rigs a few explosive harpoons and goes tearing after the Megs on a Waverunner, moviegoers may be too exhausted to cheer. Even Statham, athletic and poised as he is, seems a bit weary, too.

It’s one of the slowest, murkiest escape sequences ever put on film

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Average: 1 (1 vote)

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