47 Meters Down: Uncaged Raises the Stakes

L to R: Brianne Tju, Corinne Foxx, Sophie Nelisse, and Sistine Stallone in 47 Meters Down: Uncaged. Courtesy of Entertainment Motion Pictures Studios.

The stakes are heightened while exploring the ruins of an underwater city in 47 Meters Down: Uncaged in the sequel to the surprise hit film.

Johannes Roberts returns to the director’s chair and brings back Ernest Riera as a co-writer.  With the filmmakers back at the helm, they are sure to change things up by a notch or two.  None of the cast returns from the first film.  Because of the name, we know that the film is set in the same universe.  There are quite a few changes that come along with the second installment.  For one, there are no cages.  As such, all of the water scenes are entirely open water.  This film is one that knows what its audiences want…right down to setting the tone during opening credits.  Most of all, the lack of cages lends an opportunity here to raise the stakes.

Mia (Sophie Nélisse) isn’t the most popular girl at school.  She’s the victim of bullying and not even step-sister Sasha (Corinne Foxx) wants to be friendly with her at school.  Things change when Mia joins Sasha and her friends, Alexa (Brianne Tju) and Nicole (Sistine Stallone).  It’s an ordinary day for the four teenagers with the wind in their hair while riding in the car.  The fun continues for a little while until sometime after diving into a lake.

Mia’s dad, Grant (John Corbett), is an archaeologist and he’s been working in an underwater city.  They know where the entrance is so the four decide to explore the ruins.  We already know that something is certainly bound to happen.  This isn’t a matter of if because it’s a fricking shark movie!  It is only matter of when!  Before we know it, the screaming begins.  With only so much air, it’s just a matter of time before things reach the critical breaking point.

The film offers a somewhat different vibe than the first film because these four are all in high school.  There is somewhat of a John Hughes vibe going on.  As the film opens, we can even get a sense of Mean Girls, too, especially with the bullying that takes place.

While watching the film, the visual effects felt a bit off.  I’ve seen more than enough shark movies to know what feels realistic and what doesn’t.  Unfortunately, the sharks in this movie do not pass the grade with flying colors.  They fall just short by my standards.

Like any shark film, the thrills can come when we least expect them.  Or they can come at the very moment that we can sense something about to happen.  The lack of cages is the most important thing here because it means that anything could happen at a given moment.  Your favorite character might or might not even survive the film.  This is what we’ve come to expect from such thrillers.  The Sharknado crew is not walking through the door to save the day.

As far as shark films go, 47 Meters Down: Uncaged offers us what we have come to expect.

DIRECTOR:  Johannes Roberts
SCREENWRITERS:  Johannes Roberts & Ernest Riera
CAST: Sophie Nélisse, Corinne Foxx, Brianne Tju, Sistine Stallone, Davi Santos, Khylin Rhambo, Brec Bassinger, and John Corbett

Entertainment Motion Pictures Studios opens 47 Meters Down: Uncaged in theaters on August 16, 2019. Grade: 3/5

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.