Summer movie season can be a whole heck of a lot of fun. As filmgoers, we are treated to the biggest stars, the biggest explosions and the most fun — sometimes all in the same movie. "The Meg" from director Jon Turteltaub and Warner Bros. presents us with some ridiculous throwback fun on a grand level.
What if the bottom of the ocean as we know it today is not really the bottom of the ocean? That's exactly what researchers aboard the Mana One are trying to figure out. When an expedition heads down and breaks through the layer of gasses underwater, it reveals another world teeming with creatures long thought extinct. Little could the crew know the danger that was waiting there.
One of the creatures that quickly makes contact is a Megalodon, an ancient shark thought to be the largest that ever existed. Presumed extinct, it is a predator that fears nothing and can inflict damage on anything moving that threatens its personal space. Only one man has ever traveled to these depths and confronted a Meg: Jonas Taylor (Jason Statham). To convince him to help the crew being terrorized below the surface might be impossible, but with this beast on the loose, it just may offer the perfect redemption for Jonas.
Let's be honest, "The Meg" is never going to win any awards for the best film of the year. There are moments that are closer to "Sharknado" than "Jaws." But the combination of aspects of both makes for a fun, albeit ridiculous, adventure.
Statham in the lead role brings a mixture of attitude and bravado that is necessary for his character. And yet, he never feels like he is taking his role too seriously. Heck, he's fighting a giant shark that was thought to be extinct. Rainn Wilson (Dwight from "The Office") as an eccentric billionaire brings a humorous element to the film with his wisecracking nature.
In fact, all of the characters take themselves just seriously enough to make the tension-filled sequences feel authentic. And it's that authenticity which allows "The Meg" to traverse the border of the ridiculous with style. A throwback to days gone by and a genre that rarely gets to perform on this level, the big budget keeps the effects just cheesy enough to be fun.
I really had a good time with "The Meg," though I'm not planning on going in the water any time soon. This great end-of-summer addition is a fun ride for all the right reasons and begs to be seen in the biggest and loudest theater you can find to feel its impact.
Take a bite of "The Meg" for ridiculous fun — you'll be glad you did.
Paul's Grade: B-
Stars: Jason Statham, Li Bingbing, Rainn Wilson
Director: Jon Turteltaub