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Summer movies are starting to give me a slight case of déjà vu. Around this time last summer, Sony Pictures released an action-thriller called The Shallows. It starred Blake Lively and involved her attempting to survive a great white shark attack during her vacation in Mexico. The film was successfu enough to push The Weinstein Company to capitalize on its success by putting out their own shark movie on VOD in August called The Deep. However, shortly after this project announcement, the rights to The Deep were sold to Entertainment Studios who canceled its home video release and shelved the film until this weekend, where it was given a wide release under its working title, 47 Meters Down. This spiritual successor to The Shallows may not push boundaries creatively, but it is certainly a movie tailor-made for the summer movie season.

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Young sisters Kate and Lisa travel to Mexico in 47 Meters Down for a vacation filled with sun, fun, and adventure. Lisa needs some extra persuasion when Kate suggests that they go diving in shark-infested waters. Safe in their protective cage, the thrill-seeking siblings come face-to-face with a group of majestic great whites. Their worst fears soon become a reality when the cage breaks away from their boat, sending them plummeting to the ocean floor with a dwindling supply of oxygen. Constant comparisons to previous shark movies are almost inevitable, but we'll try to keep them to a minimum here and judge the film on its own merits. Here are the positives and negatives to 47 Meters.

First of all, this premise is definitely interesting. In a way, it reminded me of Gravity, in that our protagonists get disconnected from their ship and are trying to survive on a limited supply of oxygen. Granted, that's a surface-level comparison, and the film still has its own identity. The film was written and directed by British filmmaker Johannes Roberts, whose previous credits include films such as the critically acclaimed F, Storage 24, and The Other Side of the Door. While nowhere near a master of the horror genre, Roberts can at least competently deliver the appropriate scares, driven by the already scary concept of shark attacks.

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This film has a fairly solid cast. Between her two current television series This is Us and Tangled: The Series, one could argue that Mandy Moore doesn't need to be in this type of film. However, she turned in a fine performance, and her chemistry with Claire Holt felt believable. If I had to choose a favorite character (and no, I can't choose the shark), it would have to be Matthew Modine as Captain Taylor. Other solid performances come from Chris Johnson, Yani Gellman, and Santiago Segura to round out this cast.

At this point in the review, I have to finally expound on the unfortunate comparison-points to The Shallows. Both films have similar weaknesses, and they come from the screenplay. Neither film has the greatest character development, especially after the inciting incident. No one walked into this movie expecting Shakespeare, but it would at least be nice to have a little bit more than just weak exposition. The one major difference between this and Blake Lively's movie from last year (outside of the basic premise) comes down to how the film chooses to end. Without diving deep into spoiler-y waters, just be prepared for an ending that felt, at least to me, extremely dissatisfying.

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To end things on a high note, the score composed by Thomas Hadju and Andy Milburn, the duo who go by Tomandandy, is excellent. The duo seems to fit right into the horror genre, having previously worked on films such as The Hills Have Eyes, The Strangers, and The Monster. There were some very subtle callbacks to the classic Jaws theme that popped up every once in a while, which should be expected in movies dealing with sharks. 47 Meters Down is, by no means, a classic. However, it is the perfect kind of film to be released around this time in the summer movie season. It is a solid 85 minutes of exactly what you'd expect from a shark movie not named Jaws. Basically, if you liked The Shallows, you'll like this as well.

Michael's Score: 6/10

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About the Author
Michael Kaye
Author: Michael Kaye
Senior Movie Reviewer
I am the Senior film writer at Geeksandgamers.com. I've been an avid film fan throughout my entire life. The first two movies I ever saw in theaters were The Lion King and Toy Story, which have greatly influenced the way I view the medium. Some of my favorite genres are Sci-fi/Fantasy, Western, Musical and Crime drama. My favorite movies are Back to the Future, The Prince of Egypt, The Shining, Beauty and the Beast, X-Men: Days of Future Past, This is Spinal Tap, and Idiocracy. my other passion outside of movies is music, having grown up with bands such as The Beatles, Metallica, Simon & Garfunkel, Led Zeppelin and Trivium in constant rotation.