Meg 2: The Trench (aka The Meg 2: The Trench) review by Mark McPherson - Cinema Paradiso
Even with low expectations, Meg 2 still manages to be disappointing. The common excuse is, "What do you expect from a killer shark movie?" Well, I expect some surprising kills, maybe some comedy, and a dash of earnest terror. I also expect the sequel to not simply be a rehash of the previous film, ala the Jaws sequels. Sadly, this film plays out exactly like the Jaws sequel for being sparse on ideas and lackluster with its carnage.
Jason Statham returns as a deep-sea operative for the only mission he's good at. The previous film already established him as a man who has a history of encountering giant monsters on the ocean floor. He warned some scientists about getting too close, but they are moving forward. What's the rationale for another batch of giant sea monsters from the prehistoric age being unleashed again? Nit much of one. Mostly an energy company that's greedy.
Most of the film finds Statham doing his standard action guy theatrics as the film serves up plenty of bad guys for him to kick and punch. But, wait, where's our monster of the hour? There's a new Megalodon in town and that's presumably what audiences came to see. You won't get much of that spectacle until the third act of the film and even then its a case of too little too late for this creature feature.
In a way, The Trench does edge closer to other giant shark continuance like the aforementioned Jaws saga. The problem is that it takes all the negative aspects with it, where the boring and meandering scenes fill time until the set pieces can be unleashed. Until that big scene where Starham is launching harpoons on a jetski at the titular monster, we get a lot of retread scenes from the last film but with a less compelling cast of characters. There's not much of an arc to anybody here and it feels like the actors are just filling time, hoping the VFX will do the heavy lifting. The promise of smaller monsters munching up a resort is not that impressive, especially with a PG-13 rating kneecapping much of the film’s grandest selling point.
Meg 2: The Trench is a dismal attempt to replicate the camp of killer shark movies. This is especially disappointing coming from a director who is usually pretty reliable when it comes to balancing horror and comedy. This film becomes a mess of trying to find that silly sweet spot as it goes through the same motions of the previous film without any of the same vigor. Much like Jaws, stick with the original and ignore the sequels.