Thursday, July 23, 2015

Mega Shark Versus Mecha Shark (2014)

The Asylum machine keeps on rolling and, at this point, I feel a little bit like they won't stop until I'm in an actual asylum. When last we left off in the "epic" Mega Shark series, there were a number of unlikable protagonists we didn't really care about fighting some CGI that was worse than in the original Mega Shark Versus Giant Octopus movie, which is really impressive as it presumably had a bigger budget. Fuck knows that had to have had some extra money since they didn't bring back Debbie Gibson for it. But I've already whined about the terrible sequel so now it's time to check out the next movie in this series.

Which is actually the one people told me to watch in the first place.

If that aren't didn't give away the big surprise, this time our Megalodon is taking on a Mecha Shark, mostly so they could have a movie where both monsters had similar names. I guess that doesn't really matter though considering no one actually calls the Megalodon a Mega Shark anyway, meaning these movies really should be "Megalodon Versus Whatever We Pulled Out of Our Asses This Time", but let's move on. Now, right away I do find myself hoping for better this time because on the cast listing I see prominently displayed that Debbie Gibson is back again. Don't get too excited though, as she's really just a glourified cameo in here rather than being a central character. We also don't get Kitchen Irish or Seiji either, so it feels a bit hollow. But hey, at least we got Debbie!

Even though she probably filmed her scenes in one day. Or one hour.
In other good news, one of our main actors this go around is Christopher Judge, who you might remember better as Teal'c from Stargate SG-1, so I guess he's just really into coming into sequels to bad things and making them better with his presence. The movie opens up in Egypt, where we see two guys on a tugboat pulling in the iceberg that sank the Titanic so it can finally pay for its crimes. Just kidding, it's just a normal iceberg. Oops! Just kidding again as it seems this iceberg is like the Tootsie Pop of the sea, because there's a surprise in the center! Actually, it's not really all that surprising at all, it's just a new Megalodon to replace the dead one from the last atrocity. Yeah, it seems like those shitty characters actually did manage to kill it.

Now if only they had killed each other too, I might've liked that movie a bit.
The new Mega Shark wakes up and smacks the tugboat into the Sphinx, knocking its head off, and I immediately snicker, which I consider a good sign as the last film kept me frowning throughout. And now that the world is aware of yet another Mega Shark running around, the United Nations decides to build a weapon to combat it rather than do all the stupid shit they did in the last movie that ended up destroying Panama. Their plan? Build a giant Mecha Shark to fight the Mega Shark.

Because it worked out so well the last time the U.N. did this.
We're then introduced to our heroes, Jack and Rosie. Are they soldiers or big game hunters? Nope! They're scientists who are assigned the task of piloting the Mecha Shark. I guess they did learn their lesson from the last movie too as they're...GASP...likeable characters! Yeah, that's right, jack and Rosie both have personalities that don't grate on your nerves immediately and even care about one another (as they are happily married). Jack is a bit iffy about this whole thing because they haven't jacked in their A.I., Nero, into it yet and the new admiral character doesn't want to give him the time to do that because he's the annoying military asshole of the movie. Oh, he mentions something about his brother dying, but who was his brother? Was it the tugboat guy? Was it Admiral Cigar from the last movie (who didn't even die in that movie)? Or maybe it was the white guy with dreadlocks who I ignored from the last movie because he was so useless that he didn't even bear talking about.

but I'm talking about him now, so it all evens out!
Debbie pops in to inform us that she's in this movie...oh, and also some stuff about the Mega Shark looking for a mate. I guess it's a good thing it's heading to Australia, right? Do you get it? Because all bad jokes need to be followed by "do you get it" so people can remember never to speak to you again afterward. Personally, I think it's just going there to eat the Aussie guy from the last movie for daring to survive. Anywho, Rosie hops in her hot new ride and goes to duel the big shark...but ends up accidentally blowing up a battleship instead.

"Whoopsie!"
In better news though, she did actually manage to get a tracker on it, so they do know where it is now. Me? I would've just looked for the giant CGI fin. Whatever works, I suppose. In the aftermath of them not succeeding in their attempt to fight a giant monster with a woman who doesn't have combat training, the admiral throws another tantrum and then begrudgingly lets Jack instal Nero. Rome better look out, because Nero's back, baby! It's time to burn that shit down all over again! With the A.I. installed, it's now time for round two, so they go after the Mega Shark again. It's a good thing too, as the Mega Shark destroys an oil platform called the Event Horizon.

Which is notable for also being a gateway to literal Hell.

I want to note something here which does bother me a bit...they never call it Mega Shark but they do call it the Meg from time to time, which makes me question the title again. Then I remembered that there was a popular novel about a Megalodon called Meg that was actually supposed to get a movie at some point. I really wanted to see that. I wonder what happened with it? Let me just go look this up...

Eli Roth is directing it...life is nothing but pain, it seems.
Rosie and Nero take the Mecha Shark in to fight the Mega Shark again, but it doesn't go too well as a oil pipeline gets torn open and they have to take the time to fix that before it pollutes the ocean quicker than a fishing trip organized by BP. If that isn't enough, the Mega Shark decides it wants to recreate the most famous scene from the first film as it goes to jump after a plane flying overhead. Rosie and Nero manage to stop it from getting nommed and it's probably the best scene in this film.

I think I'd retire from flying at this point.
Afterward, we finally get some action as the two collide and the fight ends rather underwhelmingly with the Mecha Shark being buried under debris from a torpedo hitting an underwater rock formation, knocking Rosie and Nero out cold. Not long after though, Nero manages to reboot and tells Jack he thinks he can get the Mecha Shark loose and then does so. Meanwhile, the Mega Shark then decides it hates Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, as it attacks the USS James Stewart. They figure it may be attacking them because of the test they were running with high-frequency emitters, so they turn those off. Then they all die horribly as the Mega Shark rips the carrier asunder.

"Awww, man! I love Jimmy Stewart..why are you looking at me like that?"
After Kitchen Irish smacks the shit out of Lamas (in my head, at least),Nero tells Jack that he can pilot the Mecha Shark on his own, as Rosie is still out. Jack isn't crazy about the idea, but the admiral is and  they go with it. When Rosie finally wakes up from her little concussion nap she gets to actually go be in a scene with Debbie Gibson! I hope she got her autograph. Debbie tells her that the Megalodon is likely heading to its old nesting grounds in Australia so it can bump some uglies with another giant shark. Sadly, there aren't any others and that means it's going to get a bit pissy. Debbie then gets her check and goes home, because she's done for the remainder of the film. Back with Nero, he engages the monster but during the fight he gets knocked out again and the drone commands within the Mecha Shark then take over, meaning that no one is piloting it at all anymore. So it get tossed into the Sydney Opera House by the giant shark it was fighting.

It's a good thing it has all-terrain mode. Because a robot shark on tank treads doesn't look silly at all.
Here's the kicker though as it seems the on-board computer now registers everyone as a target, which means it's time to attack Sydney. Rosie chases a dumb little girl who tries to pet the Mecha Shark (but screams in terror at the soldiers who point guns at the thing) and Jack rushes to saves both of these crazy white women. They reunite the girl with her mom and two minor irritating characters show up to be irritating again right before the Mecha Shark's ridiculous treads run over them in a spray of CGI blood.

And we get to see this guy die, probably just so they could have at least one practical effect in here.
Rosie decides to jump inside the Mecha Shark's mouth so she can crawl inside it and rewire it to attract the Mega Shark to its remaining torpedo and Jack jumps on a motorbike to lead it to the water, because it makes sense for it to completely ignore everyone else but him. Inside the thing she's able to rewire it but is knocked into the chum tank and can't get out. This prompts Jack to drive their smaller robot shark they built to test Nero out in into the thing's mouth so he too can crawl inside of it and reactivate Nero. He does, manages to get Rosie out, backs up Nero, and the Mega Shark blows up after it bites down on the big shiny torpedo bait they left it. What happened to the admiral?

He died. It was mildly amusing.
This right here? This is the sequel the first Mega Shark movie deserved. Sure, it was goofy, but that's the thing you've got to go into this expecting. This isn't a Japanese film where the giant monster is treated with a bit of reverence. This is a movie made by the people who gave us Sharknado. Goofy is to be expected. But it was entertaining and had some characters that I didn't despise, which is really all I wanted out a sequel. True, I would've rather had Debbie and friends come back in full force to pilot the Mecha Shark in sentai-style outfits, but I can settle for Teal'c and his movie wife beating with their A.I. The other thing I have to say I liked was the fact that the unlikable characters actually died this time, which was so nice to see. They couldn't even let one of the Unlikable Trio die in the previous film, so it's quite refreshing.

I would've been alright with the dumb little girl dying though. She was kinda asking for it.
The CGI is a bit better this time around too, but it's still nothing all that great. I can forgive them just for giving us characters I didn't want to see die horribly though. The plot itself it really pretty standard and I was disappointed with Debbie Gibson's character only being a minor character here, but I guess that couldn't afford her for an entire film and Teal'c too. In the end, it's still not as entertaining as the first movie but it's a lot better than the second one. I'd give it a solid C+ on the grading scale. So, until we get to see the Mega Shark pass through a Stargate where it ends up fighting Space Godzilla on Unicron's ass, I'll be here thanking all that is unholy that this is the last of these movies. Later days, bleeders.

Why do I hear sinister laughter and feel a sudden sense of foreboding horror?

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