The sharks are back and smarter than ever in the long awaited Deep Blue Sea sequel. While the premise is similar, the film manages to lose what made the first so fun and effective. Come inside for my full review.
Shark movies have always been a guilty pleasure of mine and one of my favorites is Deep Blue Sea. The film was goofy even for the time, but in a way that still made it fun and tense. Despite the silly premise, it still managed to bring in some genuine thrills and characters you liked.
A sequel seemed like a no-brainer, but the years passed and nothing happened...until now (almost 20 years later). Deep Blue Sea 2 is a direct to blu-ray sequel that shares many of the same ideas/plot points as the original, without any of the connecting characters.
You have a scientist on an underwater facility who wants to develop a product to do something good in the world (sort of). To do so, they have to use shark brains to develop the formulas they need. The genetic testing done to the sharks makes them super intelligent and thus more deadly. This, of course, leads to all sorts of trouble as the sharks attack and the facility begins to fall apart.
Sound familiar? That’s because it’s almost the exact same plot line as the original. In many ways, this sequel is more of a rehash of the original plot than an actual follow-up. While the characters are new/different, most of them fill the same molds as the originals. You have the badass shark handler, the weenie who shouldn’t survive, but somehow keeps doing so, and the female scientist who runs around in attire that makes little sense for the situation.
Where the first film managed to bring a lot of fun to the table with it’s formula, even though it’s plenty goofy, Deep Blue Sea 2 can’t capture the same magic. It’s one thing to make an earnest monster movie and have it turn out to be good-natured B-movie schlock, but you can’t set out to make a film that way. It never works, but it’s obvious that’s what the filmmakers here were going for.
It’s so over the top goofy, it’s almost impossible to get into it, and robs the film of any potential tension it could have. I mean, there’s a scene in the movie where a shark straight up EAVESDROPS on a human conversation! That should tell you just about all you need to know.
The characters are one-dimensional and it’s obvious by the actors’ performances that the script doesn’t give them much to work with. As such, when they all start getting eaten by the shark babies (yeah, that’s how they tried to step up the crazy in this one) it is nearly impossible to care. Moreso because they all make the absolute dumbest decisions possible. The plot is riddled with things that don’t make sense and are solely contrived to kill off characters...characters who should be much smarter than they are.
The sound design and camera work is all, mostly, functional. There seems to have been little effort into designing a soundtrack to step up the horror/thriller vibes throughout the film. As such, it’s technically decent, but uninspired. Visually, the film is on par with just about any Syfy film (SLIGHTLY better shark animation, but not by much), but makes some odd choices.
When the facility begins to fall apart, different sections have different emergency lights. While this is supposed to bring about a sense of tension/isolation to the survivors, the reality is it washes out the entire frame in stark red/blue light. It’s tough to follow the action during these sequences and caused a TON of bleeding on my television.
The special features attached to the blu-ray are okay and has a surprisingly good “Making of” featurette...but the film is so bad that it’s tough to make yourself even bother with them. In all, there’s just not a whole lot worthwhile to visit.