47 Meters Down
Every year we all stop what we are doing for a week. We stop watching our normal television shows, and films, and we all get together and turn the television to the Discovery Channel for the phenomenon known as Shark Week. They fascinate us, they are perfect predators. And ever since summer of 75 when Steven Spielberg made us all terrified to go into the water we have been trying to replicate that feeling of the Shark Attack Film. From Deep Blue Sea, to last years The Shallows, we have our newest installment into the Shark Film, 47 Meters Down
47 Meters Down is the newest Shark film to hit theaters. It stars Mandy Moore, Claire Holt, Chris J. Johnson, Yani Gellman, Santiago Segura, and Matthew Modine. The film was directed by Johannes Roberts who also wrote the screenplay along with Ernest Riera. Released by Entertainment Studios.
The story follows two sisters, Lisa (Moore) and Kate (Holt) who are on vacation in Mexico. Convinced by some boys they meet (Gellman, Segura), they decide to go shark cage diving. While down in the cage the rig breaks and they plummet to the sea floor, 47 meters deep. They must fight to survive as they air tanks begin dwindle down and the threat of Sharks keep them from being able to take the time needed to safely return to the surface.
Shark Attack films can be very cheesy. It is not easy to make a good Shark Attack film. The 30 sequels to Jaws prove that. Every now and then a few sneak through and while they are not up to par with Jaws, they are at least able to have some cheesy fun with. 47 Meters Down is one of those dumb fun Shark Films. It is not ground breaking in anyway, but it is a lot of fun. It is very suspenseful, and keeps you on the edge of you seat. The hard part about making one of these is finding the right ratio between story and Shark Attack, and Roberts was able to do that for the most part. He found clever ways to really put the two girls in lines of the sharks and keep the tension building.
The Sharks themselves can be tricky to get to work. Many infamous stories about the problems Spielberg had with the Shark in Jaws ended up giving us the best case scenario for that film. These days we have such incredible CGI that we don’t have the same issues in bringing these sharks to life. While Last 2016’s The Shallows had a few flaws in their CGI’d shark, 47 Meters Down really brings these monsters to life. They toe the line between not showing us they creatures, and giving us beautiful, and frightening looks them.
The cast is not the strongest point in the film. The supporting cast is very basic, not adding much to the film, but that’s not exactly what they are needed for. The compliment the film enough to just be there and that is just fine. Matthew Modine is a little underutilized, yea he’s fine to see him there, but the role could have been played by anybody.
Mandy Moore and Claire Holt are fun in the film, and once they get into the confined area where it is just them the chemistry starts to shine through. Films like this in a confined area or solo films are hard for actors, especially in this type, where they are under water in full scuba gear. You can’t see their faces so their feelings and expressions can be getting lost. You have to understand what the character is going through mostly through exposition.
I’m Tired and I want to go to Bed
The issues with the film are anything but subtle. There are many problems that hold this from being a great film. While it is dumb cheesy fun, it is just that. The first act of the film is a mess. Waiting to get into the sea with the Sharks is really hard to get through. The dialog is awful and filled with exposition. None of it feels real, it is all feels forced to get us to a point where we can just get in the water, and these characters have, character. It’s obvious overload of backstory that had me worried about sitting through the entire film.
Another major negative of the film is a bit of a spoiler so I am not going to get to detailed about it, but be warned this could be considered a bit of a spoiler. There is a little bit of a cop out ending for the film, while in a way it works, it still feels like the film is finding a way to have their cake and eat it too. It is also pretty predictable.
All in all, 47 Meters Down is a dumb fun shark film. Not something you need to rush out to see, but something that if you have the free time it is worth seeing. The visuals are fun and made for the big screen, and the tension is real. The first act is hard to sit through but when the suspense starts to rev up the film really gets going. The scares hit strong, the acting while not academy award winning level, are decent. What do you think? Are you excited for 47 Meters Down? What is your favorite Shark Attack film?