Here’s the thing about “bad” movies: if you know they’re “bad” going in, and the filmmakers intention was to make a “bad” movie, then everyone can just sit back, relax, and be in on the badness together.
That said, “The Meg” is an absolutely outstanding bad movie.
Jason Statham as Jonas Taylor in Warner Bros. Pictures' and Gravity Pictures' action adventure "”The Meg,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release. (Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures. © 2018 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC., GRAVITY PICTURES FILM PRODUCTION COMPANY, AND APELLES ENTERTAINMENT, INC.)
Jonas Taylor (Jason Statham) an expert rescue diver that has hung up his scuba gear following a deep-water rescue gone (sorta) wrong. That retirement, however, is short-lived as his friend and former colleague, Mac (Cliff Curtis), recruits/guilts him into one more rescue mission.
This one is aboard, or rather far, far below, the experimental (and massive) oceanic research facility, Mana One.
Under the genius guidance of Dr. Minway Zhang (Winston Chao) and his equally brainy daughter, Suyin (Li Bingbing), Mana One’s crew was tasked with finding out if what was widely believed to be the ocean floor was actually the floor, or if there was more lying beneath it.
Turns out it’s the latter, but the new floor isn’t the only thing lurking below. The crew of an exploratory vehicle is disabled by an enormous and believed-to-be-extinct Megalodon … a pre-historic shark that makes Jaws look like Nemo.
(L-R) Cliff Curtis as Mac, Jason Statham as Jonas Taylor, Ruby Rose as Jaxx, Li Bingbing as Suyin, Jessica McNamee as Lori, Page Kennedy as DJ and Sophia Cai as Meiying in Warner Bros. Pictures' and Gravity Pictures¿ science fiction action thriller “The Meg,” a Gravity Pictures release for China, and a Warner Bros. Pictures release throughout the rest of the world. (Photo by Daniel Smith. © 2018 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC., GRAVITY PICTURES FILM PRODUCTION COMPANY, AND APELLES ENTERTAINMENT, INC.)
It’s up to Jonas, and the rest of the crew, including financier Morris (Rainn Wilson), engineer Jaxx (Ruby Rose), and rover pilot DJ (Page Kennedy), to save their cohorts, and the rest of the world, from this pre-historic menace.
If that brief synopsis sounds ridiculous, that’s because it is. The idea of a 70+ foot, long-extinct shark living far below the previously-established lowest point on Earth, just biding its time until it can lash out against anything in its sight, should sound nothing but ridiculous.
But because it’s so outlandish, it actually works. It works in the same vein that Bruce Willis and Ben Affleck landing space shuttles on an asteroid and blowing it up from the inside to save the planet works, or that The Rock can harness the power of a gigantic, mutated ape to defeat a gigantic, mutated alligator and wolf works.
A scene from Warner Bros. Pictures' and Gravity Pictures' science fiction action thriller “The Meg,” a Gravity Pictures release for China, and a Warner Bros. Pictures release throughout the rest of the world. (Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures. © 2018 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC., GRAVITY PICTURES FILM PRODUCTION COMPANY, AND APELLES ENTERTAINMENT, INC.)
When even an unreasonable person (minus some fringe lunatics) can look at a scenario and not say, “No way,” then you’re 100% free to suspend disbelief and embrace the ridiculous.
And you really, really have to be able to do that because “The Meg” is the epitome of a “B” creature movie. The acting is pretty bad, the dialogue is worse, and the CGI looks cool, but is so bizarre at times that it borders on cartoonish.
Yet somehow it all comes together and works to create a couple of hours of mindless fun. (Do yourself a favor and see it in IMAX.)
★★★★ of ★★★★★