Going into watching the Meg, after seeing its trailer. I only expected one single thing to come out of it: Jason Statham vs. a giant shark. Oh, sure this movie was based on a book, but the trailer basically sells what deep down anyone wants to see: Jason Statham vs. a giant shark. And in that regard, the movie fully delivers on that promise. The giant shark wronged Jason Statham in this film, and Statham must have his vengeance!
Though honestly, I think the Meg was wrongfully framed. Oh sure, it was a man-eating machine that chomped on anything that was in its range. But I truly think it was an innocent creature in this. I mean hear me out. The beginning of this film feels straight out of a Godzilla movie. Nuclear sub at the bottom of an oceanic depth? Yep, I'm gonna say Godzilla probably framed the Meg. Yep, Jason Statham needs to fight Godzilla now. It needs to happen. Oh wait, it did just that in IDW's Godzilla: History's Greatest Monster by Duane Swierczynski and Simon Gane:
Okay, we need that adapted as the sequel. I'm just putting it out there Warner Bros. Jason Statham vs. Godzilla in live-action needs to happen. Can't we just forgo the inferior opponent in Kong and just go with Statham? The giant ape ain't no king. We all know he's gonna get trounced by Godzilla. Statham is far more charismatic. He has better line delivery and obviously can put up a better fight like he did with the Meg in this film. Plus you can easily put this movie into Legendary's Monsterverse and it just clicks. Just saying it works than Kong.
So yeah, back to this film. That's basically it. I mean the movie has a stellar supporting cast in Li Bingbing, Cliff Curtis (who honestly surprised me on how long his character lasted. I figured via the trailers his character was SOOOOOO gonna be the first one to get eaten. I'm kind of glad by it cause him and Statham do have some amusing scenes together), Rainn Wilson (okay "Dwight" really toned up the annoying quip factor, but hell the payoff was perfect), Page Kennedy, and Ruby Rose (who honestly feels like the only wasted performance, even if she does have some amusing banter with Kennedy's character).
If I was to nitpick it would be the fact that well, two deaths are basically the crux of the movie. Anyone else? Um yeah... oh well save one brief moment of silence near the start of the climax. Plus this movie uses some heavy damn cliches. It takes a bit from Jaws 3, and just before your mind is like, "Wait...." that's when it jump scares you into forgetting it.
There are other ones as well, but hell. When you see Jason Statham taking on a giant shark and giving you the money-shot of all money-shots. Yeah, the movie set out for what it intended. Oh sure, it could have had a lot more blood and gore. But it didn't have that. But what it did have was Jason Statham vs. a giant shark-- and if you cannot be entertained by that simple notion. Well, then you're not having fun at all.
So on the scale of giant monster movies we've had this year (barring the greatest giant monster moment happening in Ready Player One of all places). I'd still rate Rampage as the best one we've got (the movie knew what genre it was and played it for all it was gloriously worth), then this, Pacific Rim: Uprising (which pisses me off because John Boyega was good in the damn movie, just there are two things that still piss me off about the movie), and then Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom ending up in the rear. But yeah if you're expecting a gore-fest in the vein of Deep Blue Sea or Jaws movie. Then you're in the wrong boat. If you want to see Jason Statham take on a wrongly excused giant shark? This movie does not disappoint in the regard. Did I drink a few shots when writing this review? Hell yes, I did! That, and I kind read the first issue of Godzilla: History's Greatest Monster, which only hyped me more into loving this movie more. Cause that damn comic prepared me perfectly for this damn movie and I wasn't disappointed in the fact this movie IS Jason Statham vs a giant shark. Go with anything else, you'll probably be disappointed.
3.5 out of 5