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Before we sit down in the theater, we know pretty much exactly what
happens. Two girls go scuba diving in a shark cage and wind up a
trapped in said cage 47 meters below the surface. Since they aren't
experts, we know how they will react. Then sharks show up. Since they
are sharks in a scary movie, we know how they will react. There is no
real room for surprises.
If you expect rampant plot twists and character development, you must not see this type of movie often. It is what it is and it knows that. Despite the only real mystery being which of the girls survives, if any, or perhaps both, the movie actually manages to provide a refreshing twist.
That may sound bold to say when talking about a powerfully simple shark attack movie, but take some time to think about it. The twist is secretly ingenious and explains away many of the ghastly errors in believability.
I'm surprised to find myself defending a movie that I didn't really like all that much. But I am. It's not that movie doesn't deserve criticism. It certainly does. The acting performances earn failing grades across the board. The dialogue is laced with embarrassing over explanations and repeated lines, most of which involve warnings from the captain about the bends. Other times this takes the form of the girls obnoxiously narrating the menial tasks as they carry them out. Once or twice might have been fine, but it's tough to stomach after about the 10th time or so.
My thought on this is maybe the filmmakers knew that it was too dark to see what was going on for most of the movie, so they made the girls say aloud everything that they did. This solution makes about as much sense as going on a five-mile run after knowingly drinking spoiled milk. If one problem is easily avoidable, avoid the problem. Don't attempt a remedy that almost certainly won't help the situation.
All that said, I defend the movie because I think it executes its mission reasonably well. I shifted to the edge of my seat and felt uneasy on many occasions. The movie managed to scare the audience and it did so with fewer jump scares than expected.
Instead, the movie built to moments that would normally climax with the infamous jump scare then simply opted not to deliver one. The goal is still achieved. The moments still induce a sense of dread from the audience, but without the cheapness of frightening viewers by essentially saying "boo." I'd like to see other movies emulate this tactic.
My advice: if you are going to watch this movie, understand what you are getting into. The movie likely won't surprise and that wasn't its intention. Be reasonable with your expectations. Accept the movie's strengths and weaknesses. Empathize with how terrifying the situation would be if it were you stuck in the shark cage on the ocean floor, and don't hesitate to laugh at the movie's weaknesses.
Do those two things, and you may walk away satisfied. If you are unwilling to do that, stay out of the water.
For a scary shark flick I found it totally worked. Of course the intro,
party scene & boys are what you'd expect for this genre, and had me
wondering if I'd make it to the end due to all the cliché.
But it did take off from there nicely, had some genuine holy f*ck moments, a good pacing and had me wondering all the way if the girls would make it to the end...
The camera work was great and the sharks well done (a bit too aggressive for total realism, but hey). The ending was also original, for once!
Compared to The Shallows, I'd say it's equally solid in terms of entertainment value and getting the viewer hooked until the end.
Overall a solid 7 in my book.
I had a great time with this one! It really succeeded where few monster
movies manage to. It provided tension, scary moments and it did made me
hold my breath!
Beside this year's The Shallows, we got In The Deep, which is a beautifully shot movie, good acting, nice reactions, pretty much the whole nine yards here. It was a great little movie, I'm just sad it didn't get the attention it should have. People need to know that this is not another low budget shark movie, but a damn good one!
Watch it and you will not regret. It provides a great, great atmosphere and surely enough, most of you will enjoy it.
It's summer again; it's a shark movie. Lisa and Kate are two sisters
on holiday in Mexico with one grieving a lost relationship and the
other looking for fun. Against their better judgement they go shark
cage diving 5 metres below a vessel that looks like it should have been
in the salvage yard 20 years ago. After a mechanical failure the cage
plummets down to the sea bed..... (Go on, how deep? Have a guess. Go
on, go on, go on ...)
With sharks circling and air running low, will the girls survive their ordeal?
Last year, one of the surprise movies of the year for me was "The Shallows", which I really enjoyed. A tense, well made yarn held together by a solid performance by Blake Lively and with a genuine escalation of tension (albeit let down by a poor ending).
"47 Metres Down" differs from that film in three major respects: B- movie acting, from Mandy Moore and Claire Holt (with Holt being significantly better than Moore); a screenplay by Johannes Roberts and Ernest Riera that is both ponderous and unbelievable; and dialogue that is at times truly execrable.
The film really takes its time to get to the 'sharp end' (as it were). Once there, the actions of the girls are so clinically stupid that they are deserving of Darwin Award nominations. Fortunately, the IQs of the sharks (well realised as CGI by Outpost VFX) are only marginally greater: the sharks will appear and then go away for ten minutes at a time, just so that the implausible plot can progress unmolested.
These films always need an escalator for the tension: in "The Shallows" it was the rising tide; in this film it is the air supply. This element works well and adds an additional element of claustrophobia to the film that is already at 11 on the scale (you surely don't need me to tell you that claustrophobics need to avoid this film!).
Much of the dialogue is expository regarding what is going on in the darkness and is so repetitive ("We ARE going to get out of here Kate!") that it would make a good drinking game. The worst dialogue award though goes to Matthew Modine ("Memphis Belle") who's repeated medical descriptions of "the bends" becomes mildly comical - I literally got a fit of the giggles at one point.
I'm not going to completely savage the film though, since there IS a nice twist to the ending, albeit one that's heavily signposted. And instead of reaching constantly for the classic "Ben's head in the boat" jump scare, the film occasionally teases the audience with set- ups that ultimately just feature murky water and nothing more.
My recommendation: if you've not yet seen "The Shallows", check that out on DVD and give this one a miss.
(For the graphical version of this review please visit bob-the-movie- man.com. Thanks).
Two adrenaline bursts in this movie... one star for each. I secretly
love MM, but when the writers, producers, and director take on a
project like this (diving w/ sharks), they really need to AT LEAST have
an inkling about how diving affects people and shark behavior... I was
snickering throughout instead of gripping my arm-rests like I should
#1 47 meters is the threshold of "maximum safe depth" for (deep) recreational divers and since not all divers have exact physiology and these characters were novices and freaking out, being at that threshold itself would have killed them quickly.
#2 Sharks in general are not attracted to iron-based "aka human" blood (they are attracted to copper-based blood "mainly fish") - they will attack regardless on occasion but not because they heard your heartbeat and thirsted for your blood even from 5 feet away.
(I'll limit this list to 3 items) #3 Sharks do not like the sound of bubbles in the water... in fact it scares them and is akin to the sound of fingernails on a chalkboard (for us) so 100% of them leave the area when they hear it. No, their hunger does not counteract their discomfort.
But I get it, you can't make a movie about terrifying sharks that behave in their natural, unobtrusive ways - the movie needed shock value. It's just that experienced divers like myself are lost on the ridiculousness of the action and those who don't dive now won't go near the water in fear of marine dangers that aren't real, at least as were portrayed by this film.
Still, it wasn't a complete waste of 89 minutes... MM is still gorgeous! And who's this Stuart guy anyway!?
I have to say that IMDb has become more and more misleading with their
ratings. Incredibly deep European movies getting low ratings while
movies like this are ranking higher and higher every time. Reading all
the reviews below, you get to understand why.
This movie is unrealistic and silly in many ways and this is no minor issue. I understand that cinema is a suspension of disbelief but this movie could have been much better if it had been more realistic. I won't get into details other than saying the behaviour of the characters (especially those lame cowards on deck) is unbelievable, the moments of terror boring and the decision made by everyone is dumb. The Coast Guard should have arrived immediately carrying proper gear like tiny explosives which are thrown around the girls (of course, knowing their location beforehand) in order to chase away the sharks.
The music is predictable. The action scenes are clichéd and not remarkable and worst of all, they are boring. That ripped off finale from "The Descent" and "Gravity" does not work because we have seen it before in much better films.
There are tragedy movies which are so real and in which the characters do everything their common sense dictates that the viewer cannot but suffer and empathize with their predicament. And the movie shines. No wonder such movies have become classics. This is not one of them. Boring and dumb. Stay away!
One of the first things taught in film school is if you can show the audience, don't tell them. That is why most voice overs are not necessary and exposition scenes bring most films to a screeching halt. 47 Meters Down commits the sin of not only showing us things, but having characters make sure we know what we are seeing by repeating what is being shown. Case in point: One character is swimming along the ocean floor and spots a spear gun. It is obviously a spear gun. Only an idiot would not know this is a spear gun. The character then feels the need to say, "There is a spear gun." This happens throughout the film. The air tank reads low, "I am almost out of air." A giant shark swims by, "Look there is a shark." When this film comes out on video, it would make a great drinking game. Whenever someone repeats what is shown on screen, take a shot. No one will be conscious by the end of the film. Skip this movie. It is awful.
This movie is unrealistic trash. Two girls go out cage diving with
whites. The cage and boat they are in are in no condition to be out on
the water. Cage diving with sharks is a highly regulated activity. It's
not run by a bunch of dirt poor mexicans with trash gear. White sharks
aren't as aggressive as they make them look in this Hollywood crap
Terrible acting and screenplay. The director must have an IQ of around 70 to find this sort of film work acceptable.
All this movie is doing is making stupid people afraid of the water, and hate sharks.
This could have been a cliché shark movie, but it's not. In some shark movies, the creatures are so unrealistic that the plot loses any credibility. In this, the sharks are just there, where they should be, and doing what they normally do, and the film is very much more terrifying for that. The real horror here is running out of air, and I'm pretty sure I'm not the only viewer of this great little atmospheric film breathing very shallowly indeed to conserve precious air whilst watching it! Having done a bit of diving off Mexico, I reckon this movie is pretty accurate. The cinematography is absolutely superb--every shot is like being there, gorgeously lit and incredibly claustrophobic. I liked the main characters: neither were bimbos. I wanted them both to live. Along with The Shallows, I'd say this is one of the best shark movies out there. Highly recommended.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Two generic, entitled American girls decide to pay money to get on a shabby boat to go cage diving. Along with CGI, extremely aggressive, and larger than life sharks, these enthusiastic pleasure seekers come to the brilliant decision to trust a bunch of strangers with their lives. Oddly, and predictably, the rusty cage is not up to standard, as is the winch and line. Every shot of sharks are of ridiculously proportioned great whites with their teeth showing, and-or mouths agape. The only redeemable character is overwhelmed by Mandy Moore illogical screams. It was a frustrating and nonsensical movie, where sharks, once again, prey on humans like humans prey on animals. When is Hollywood going to stop their misconceived lunacy when it comes to animal behavior?
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