Review: Meg 2: The Trench More Camp Than Cohesive

Meg 2: The Trench is more camp ridiculousness than cohesive entertainment. Think if Jurassic Park and The Fast & Furious series joined forces. A lot of the jokes don't work, but regardless, it is popcorn fun, and since I'm a fan of sharks despite my terror of the water, I enjoyed it. Meg 2: The Trench breaks the surface for terror and entertainment even as dialogue and story fall by the wayside. 

Directed by Ben Wheatley and written by Jon Hoeber, Eric Hoeber, and Dean Georgaris, Meg 2 has Jason Statham return as environmentalist Jonas Taylor. Alongside his team, James (Cliff Curtis) and DJ (Page Kennedy), even little Meiying returns, played by the same actress, Shuya Sophia Cai, to explore the ocean's depths. No, a kid shouldn't explore those deadly depths, but Meiying pulls a The Lost World: Jurassic Park and winds up aboard with the others.  

Meg 2: The Trench Has Goofy Funny Acting

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Image Credit: Warner Bros.

Meg 2 features some ridiculous acting, to say the least. Some of the cast tries to pull emotions out of thin air. But it's hilarious because it makes no sense. Most jokes don't land, but Jason Statham is his usual rough self and always fun to watch. Meg 2: The Trench doesn't try to be serious. Of the group, DJ and James stand out for comedic moments. It's great to see Cliff Curtis, who deserves more roles, as well as Page Kennedy shine in the latter half of the film. Despite the mayhem and bloodshed, there are next to no stakes for your favorites. So audiences can sit back and enjoy. 

Shuya Sophia Cai is adorable, but this film is too much fun for any of the dramatic moments to resonate. Wu Jing, as Meiying's uncle, Jiuming, thinks he has a “special bond” with predators, so his character is hilariously realistic. 

Some Slasheresque Choices

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Image Credit: Warner Bros.

Moments of Meg 2 will have some audience members gnashing their teeth. In this sense, it recalls the stereotypical slasher horror films of yore. I raged for the movie's first half as the team took inopportune moments to do something asinine. Their lives are on the line underwater, and they have little time, but that doesn't stop characters from pausing to talk or touch things. If facepalm was a living breathing thing, here's where it would pop up. 

The movie also has an unexpected benefit: it can let you know who in your party to sacrifice. If they pull some of the nonsensical moves these folks do, it's time to leave them to fend for themselves. 

Jurassic Park: Under The Sea Edition

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Image Credit: Warner Bros.

Meg 2: The Trench is at its best in action sequences. Jason Statham battles as usual, and the other characters manage a few surprises too. The last leg of the film has bloodshed without much blood, like the Jurassic Park films. Plus, as an avid fan of Shark Week with an irrational fear of sharks—I'll imagine them magically appearing in my room to swallow me whole—it's always fun to watch aquatic nature unleash its fury. So, Meg 2: The Trench is fun yet scary. Regardless of its flaws, I could not stop watching. 

Meg 2: The Trench also hits a soft spot for fans of the book. Its opening starts like Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror. That opening kept me reading. The movie has that some compelling quality. On the whole, both films bear little resemblance to the book, but it was amazing to see that snippet for the book lovers.  

We do not know what lies at the bottom of the oceans. Scientists have found sea creatures they thought were extinct for millions of years, like the Coelacanth. Could the megalodon, or something like it, exist? Meg 2: The Trench deals in that “what if” world for entertainment, and the mayhem unleashed here allows fans of oceans, Jason Statham, or those with fear of the sea, to enjoy its terror from the comfort of a seat on dry land. 

Rating: 6.5/10 SPECS