Directed by: Johannes Roberts
Written by: Johannes Roberts, Ernest Riera
Starring: Sophie Nélisse, Corinne Foxx, Brianne Tju, Sistine Stallone, Davi Santos, Khylin Rhambo, Brec Bassinger, John Corbett
Runtime: 89 min
47 Meters Down: Uncaged follows the diving adventure of four teenage girls (Corinne Foxx, Sistine Stallone, Sophie Nélisse, and Brianne Tju) exploring a submerged Mayan City. Once inside, their rush of excitement turns into a jolt of terror as they discover the sunken ruins are a hunting ground for deadly Great White Sharks.
With their air supply steadily dwindling, the friends must navigate the underwater labyrinth of claustrophobic caves and eerie tunnels in search of a way out of their watery hell.
Sometimes, people ask me if I feel less motivated to write about a movie I didn’t like or even simply hated. Not even close. Matter of fact, it might be the exact opposite. The only films which I find hard to write a review on are those who don’t have a single aspect that is either outstanding or horrible. Those who are so “in the middle” that you forget about them less than 24h after you’ve seen it. 47 Meters Down: Uncaged could very well be this type of flick, but its ludicrous logical issues story-wise are impossible to ignore. Even the title is just a marketing scheme to attract people who liked the 2017’s original since it is entirely unrelated to it (the water depth at which the characters are is never addressed).
This is one of the worst movies of the year. It still doesn’t beat Serenity, but it made me rethink about the latter’s grade because I find it so incredibly difficult to acknowledge one single good thing about this terrible sequel. Had I scored Matthew McConaughey’s film an F, this one would probably belong there as well. However, in the same way that a film without flaws isn’t necessarily an A+, a movie with no redeeming quality isn’t instantly an F. If there’s one compliment I can give Uncaged is that there are two or three short sequences where a jump scare is effective, or the suspenseful vibe was accomplished … Nevertheless, these are still just a couple of minutes in an almost 90-min runtime.
The characters have no development whatsoever. The story follows the most pathetic path possible. The sharks (which are the reason people actually went to the theater) are not as visually realistic as in the original, reaching a point where the CGI was pretty awful. A fish screams … I mean, really?! Who the hell supervised this mess? Characters talk underwater seamlessly with no explanation on how they are effectively talking. I could sit here and write dozens of questions that defy the film’s logic, but I’ll stop here. Not because I don’t want to (if this wasn’t a spoiler-free review, I’d go crazy), but due to the fact that the main issue with the movie isn’t the atrociously illogical plot points, but the lack of entertainment.
Fast and Furious, Pirates of the Caribbean, Transformers … All of these are (financially) successful franchises. Audiences all over the world fill theaters and enjoy these series for what they are: popcorn entertainment. No one goes for the complex plots or layered characters. People go for the action, the explosions, the epic scores, the visual effects, and all of that stuff. Uncaged doesn’t have any of that to compensate its other problems. One or two scenes here and there aren’t enough to warrant the price of admission. Even the acting is mediocre.
All in all, 47 Meters Down: Uncaged is nothing more than a silly attempt at the start of a new franchise. Don’t be fooled by its title since it has nothing to do with the original flick. It doesn’t try to introduce compelling characters, the shark sequences fall flat for the most part, and the screenplay is filled with laughable plot points. There’s no sense of logic. For an 89-minute runtime, it astounds me how it can’t be slightly entertaining, to say the least. Undoubtedly, one of the worst films of the year. Skip it, so they don’t have enough money to try and do a third one. Who knows?! Maybe they’ll bet on original, smaller flicks from genuinely talented filmmakers who want to work hard and deliver a good movie.