In 2018, The mega may not have been a huge hit with critics, but that didn’t stop the shark film from becoming a box office hit with over $500 million worldwide.
A sequel was confirmed pretty much instantly even though we had to wait five years for Jason Statham to return to shark-killing mode. Meg 2: The Trench has now swum in cinemas with critics embargoed until the day of its UK release.
Normally, that would set off alarm bells for most other films. However, if there’s one summer release that’s critic-proof, it’s mega 2 as you already know if you want to see more stath vs giant bloody shark action.
Are we saying that means our review is kind of pointless? Probably. But given that we’re one of the audiences who really want to see Stath vs. the Shark, we’re committed – and we’re also sad to say that the sequel forgets it’s a shark movie.
Related: What Is The Age Range For Meg 2: The Trench? Is it suitable for children?
If you need land for Meg 2: The Trench beyond Stath vs shark (three of them this time), here we go.
In the years since the first film, Jonas Taylor (Statham) is now something of an environmental spy, keeping all sorts of nefarious individuals out of the ocean as part of his work with the Ocean Institute run by Suyin’s brother, Jiuming (Wu Ying). .
He’s also on hand to provide expert advice to Meg given that he’s one of the few to go head-to-head and win. So Jonas and Jiuming head to the deepest depths of the ocean to map out the trench where they think the Megs came from and where all sorts of other prehistoric creatures are.
Unsurprisingly, this mission doesn’t quite go to plan when they run into an illegal mining operation on the seabed. Soon, Jonas must call on all his expertise to survive a deadly race against time in another high-stakes battle for survival.
Related: Jason Statham’s The Meg Gets Special Edition Blu-ray Steelbook Ahead Of Sequel
It looks perfect for a mega sequel, right? Well, it would be if the sequel decided to focus more on sharks and less on humans. For the vast majority of mega 2the Megs are on the periphery, a threat that exists but not the overriding threat that Jonas and his team face.
Instead, that threat is the mining run by Montes (Sergio Peris-Mencheta) who also gets help from inside Jiuming’s company. This turns the first half into a boring spy thriller where Jonas punches more people than Megs, and even worse, it all takes place in the murky environment of the ocean floor, which means you can’t see the most of what happens.
Statham has proven his acting abilities time and time again, so it’s less of an issue with what he does and more with expectations. you do not come mega 2 for a corporate espionage conspiracy; you come for big-screen shark carnage stolen from you for long, heavy stretches of the sequel.
Perhaps if the villains had had more depth, it would have at least led to satisfying deaths when they inevitably meet their demise. But they are all so monotonous that they do not leave enough of an impression. In other words, they’re not hateful enough to make their death entertaining.
Eventually, the sequel surfaces, and director Ben Wheatley lets the sharks (and other prehistoric creatures, which we won’t spoil here) run amok on unwitting humans. There are flashes of what could have been, including a sight from Meg’s mouth about a big meal and a hilarious pun killing Jonas, but it’s not enough to save the sequel.
If you’ve seen the trailers, you’ve seen the money shots and given its 12A rating, the deaths are all relatively bloodless like the first film. As The mega plus you’ve definitely seen better CGI, but at least you’re getting some shark action.
mega 2 is a movie that’s never quite sure if it wants to play things totally straight or be self-aware, if it wants to be a really serious horror movie (there are jump scares at the good time) or a ridiculous actor who bites sharks. For a single director like Wheatley, it all ends up being a flat hodgepodge of different genres and better movies.
The finale promises a potential direction for a third film if Meg 2: The Trench is enough of a shot. We can only hope that third time will be the charm when it comes to realizing what should be such a concept.
Meg 2: The Trench is now out in theaters.