Plot: What’s it about?
Pretentious: /prēˈten(t)SHəs/ adjective – Attempting to impress by affecting greater importance, talent, culture, etc., than is actually possessed. That’s something you won’t find in Meg 2: The Trench (or 2018’s The Meg). And that’s good news. I’ve lost count of the number of films out there that try to be something they’re not. It’s so annoying. If you’re going to set out to make a bad movie (and I don’t believe that many actually do) at least embrace it. And that’s what these Meg movies are all about. Take a ragtag group of folks, throw in an 80 foot prehistoric beast that’s only got one mission in life (kill, if you needed reminding) and throw in a lot of clichés – boom. You’ve got yourself a cult classic. And, in true Hollywood form, five years later we’ve got a sequel that follows all the rules of a sequel, which makes this one lose some of its bite (get it?). I’m sure you’re dying for the plot, so let’s get started.
Jonas Taylor (Jason Statham) returns as the “expert” rescue diver who, after his previous adventure, now works as an eco-warrior. He sneaks onto barges that dump radioactive waste and tries to expose their illegal activities. He’s called back into action when Jiuming Zhang (Wu Jing) needs him to accompany her on an exploratory dive into a deep trench where megladons live. Did you see the word “trench”? The group and their team venture into (what they believe) to be unexplored territory. And, much to their chagrin, they find a station built by a rouge mining operation. Naturally there are folks there that don’t want any intruders. From there the team gets split up, we see a few of the members bite it and it would seem that some of these corporate folks aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Oh, and also megladons and other assorted creatures are all hungry for…anything.
Meg 2: The Trench is still, at its heart, something that I did enjoy. As I’m sure anyone will agree, this one doesn’t take itself too seriously and I liked that. I’m also in awe of Jason Statham who seems to have not aged in a few decades. I guess there is an up side to male pattern baldness after all? You won’t be challenged intellectually and if you are, well…sorry, but life is going to be difficult for you. But if you’re in the mood for mindless action, corporate takedowns (of the physical nature) and man-eating prehistoric beasts – you’ve come to the right place.
Video: How’s it look?
This is a new to the format film from a major studio and, as such, the expectations should be high. Though a lot of the action takes place with some underwater shots, we are treated to an extremely g00d-looking movie. The 2.39:1 HEVC 4K image looks the part with razor sharp detail and HDR which gives the sea a bit more of a majestic look. Majestic? Yep. Why not? Flesh tones are spot on, contrast (especially those in the water) isn’t challenged. Perpetual 5 o’clock shadow actor Jason Statham’s beard is on full display. I challenge you to find the last time that guy was clean shaven. Add it all up and you’ve got yourself a winner.
Audio: How’s it sound?
When one of the main characters is an 80 foot prehistoric shark (and we’ve got more critters in the mix this time around), I’m willing to bet that you’ll want to turn the volume up as high as it can go. Do that. Let me know how that works out. But if you value your hearing, the Dolby Atmos track will take every one of your speakers and make sure they earn their keep. Screams, underwater sounds and vocals all sound excellent. The atmospheric mix really encompasses the viewer and provides a nice 360 degree sound stage. The Blu-ray doesn’t miss out on the action either as it contains the same Atmos mix as the 4K disc. All in all a fun and immersing experience.
Supplements: What are the extras?
- The Making of Meg 2: The Trench – Cast and crew revisit the making of the film and working with new and returning cast members, then highlight the beauty and challenges of working with a Meg they can’t see!
- Up From the Depths: Even More Beasts – Director Ben Wheatley, cast and producers guide fans through the creation and design of the new creatures seen in the movie.
The Bottom Line
Meg 2: The Trench is still more schlock-worthy fun, but it doesn’t quite live up to its predecessor. That’s OK, though. Movies that don’t take themselves too seriously are something I enjoy (I tend not to take myself too seriously, either). So if The Meg was up your alley, this one shall be as well. As expected, Warner’s disc sports a great-looking transfer that packs plenty of punch in the audio department.