A Film Review of “The Meg” by someone who watched ‘most’ of Shark Week.

This is a Good Film if You Like Sharks

Sharks, of the phylum Chordata, feature heavily in this film.

The film opens with an eccentric billionaire awkwardly trying to bro his way through a bunch of scientists, which might be a snide joke towards James Cameron and his expedition to the bottom of the Sea. Anyway, some shark based plot is heavily explained and then a submarine containing a man who is happily married goes to the bottom of the ocean. Things go bad and they call on a man who is divorced to go rescue him.

The divorced guy lives in Thailand, which makes sense because it is super cheap there. Maybe, instead of moving to Texas or Idaho, Californians seeking a cheaper place to live should be deported to Thailand.

Divorced fellow goes with the scientists to visit the undersea disaster with the happily married guy in it. The divorced guy’s name is Jonas, which, for you atheists out there, is a totally poetic reference to the guy in the bible who must go warn Ninevah of their oncoming doom. Well, instead of going to where God tells him, he gets on a boat in the opposite direction, and then after being eaten by a fish, goes back to Ninevah, preaches for them to follow God, which they do, and gets upset that they are not struck down, so God grows a vine with a leaf over his head, causes it to wither, and then he complains about the leaf.

Back on the undersea submarine, the trapped mariners practice some improper tool safety, and run into a situation where the electrical system and computers function perfectly  but the engines won’t start, which from my experience never happens. If the engines don’t work, trust me, some computers and electronic components are doomed as well. Luckily they get some kind of alternate low power mode working, but through improper tool safety things go bad. Also, sharks Ampullae of Lorenzi pick up metal, and with their excellent vision would be able to see a metal submarine in light as well as dark. Also after a large meal they literally do not eat for two or three days because they need time to digest. But enough about my problems, it’s just a movie, a scientifically inaccurate movie about sharks doing things sharks never do:

Up topside everyone takes the old maxim of ‘never do anything dumb dangerous or different’ and throws it out the window. They use some mini submarines that look like leftovers from an old sci fi project that got cancelled, and Jonas(Jason Statham) acts like a jackass. It’s weird how hollywood portrays heroes in Crisis mode. I’ve met some real heroes, Jack Sheppard from Apollo 13, also some UFC fighters, a former President, nobody acts like Jason Statham in the movie. This is what happens when a nerd in a back room gets a typewriter and makes a movie about a hero.

There are a few injected morsels of peoples chaotic family lives and an 8 year old casually talks about her parents divorce and how she is totally adapted to her broken life, because 8 year olds handle that kind of thing well.

Shark Fin Soup:

Somehow the operation encounters a fishing boat which in the middle of the deep ocean which is catching anything but white tips, which they honestly would if they were trying to catch sharks in open ocean, statistically speaking. Also the doctors are proven to be totally wrong and Jason Statham gets his own #MeToo moment.  Well, a lot of family drama occurs, and if you decide that Megalodons use buccal pumping instead of ram ventilation the movie is great for a bit. The Billionaire naturally is only concerned with making money(off of a science expedition) and after an unfortunate death, chooses to give a “we must monetize this” speech, which is weird because most of the really successful business people I know would be concerned with how people are doing emotionally(happy people work harder), but luckily it works and 3 minutes later everyone is totally over their dead friend and back to work.

Ruby Rose has an accident that would literally crush her ribcage instantly, and instead of losing consciousness she’s all peppy and full of vigor. The shark kills people, some of the deaths are truly hilarious.

Keanu Reeves, Ruby Rose and Justin Bieber. Literally the same.

NATIONAL DEFENSE STRATEGY:

“China is a strategic competitor using predatory economics to intimidate its neighbors while militarizing features in the South China Sea.”

Per:  https://www.defense.gov/Portals/1/Documents/pubs/2018-National-Defense-Strategy-Summary.pdf

The ship sinkings in the film annoy me because that many ships in rapid succession sinking with a creature that size moving that size from ship to ship would almost certainly generate sizeable rescue response. Think about how our submarines can hear someone sneeze a mile away, and how rudimentary stealth for submarines in the 40’s was to make them sound like whales on S.O.N.A.R., don’t you think a giant object moving rapidly from ship to ship sinking them wouldn’t be picked up somehow by at least one military? But it’s not worth getting upset, my only issue is how often chum is thrown in the water to attract the megalodon and NO OTHER SHARKS appear.

SHACKLETON:

There is a boat named Ernest Shackleton, which is super important. For those of you who do not know, he took an expedition to the Antarctic, the ship got crushed in the ice, and he kept his men together and alive over the course of drifting 250 miles on icepack over 60 days, sailing 60 miles through open ocean in lifeboats, and then he and seven others sailed 700 nautical miles in another small boat through a hurricane that was sinking cargo ships and literally brought every single person who left with him back home alive. That’s amazing. He also made his men stop and play football now and again to keep morale high, which Jason Statham’s character doesn’t do.

Not as amazing as the megalodon.

 

In the end of the movie, hammerheads have oversized Ampullae of Lorenzini, making them extremely aware of any electromagnetic signals or machinery around them, which combined with the shovel head that makes them super agile in the water, so the final scene is elasmobranchologically(shark science) impossible.

As an aside, count the number of mentioned or otherwise, successful happy marriages in the film at the start, and compare it to how many exist at the end. Literally 3:1, unless you count the wedding in the parking lot outside the movie theatre I went to, in which case 3:2. Lame.

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