Film Review: 47 METRES DOWN: UNCAGED (USA 2019) **

47 Meters Down: Uncaged Poster

Four teen girls diving in a ruined underwater city quickly learn they’ve entered the territory of the deadliest shark species in the claustrophobic labyrinth of submerged caves.


Johannes Roberts

Back in 2017, a low budget survival horror film that cost only $5 million to make earned a whopping $62 million worldwide at the box-office despite mixed reviews. The plot followed two sisters who are invited to cage dive while on holiday in Mexico.  When the winch system holding the cage broke and the cage plummets to the ocean floor with the two girls trapped inside, they must find a way to escape, with their air supplies running low and great white sharks stalking nearby.

A new survival horror sequel arrives this week with a similar title 47 METRES DOWN: UNCAGED.  The first part of the title 47 METRES DOWN will tend to be confusing but the uncaged signifies that the film is also about sharks, and this time about girls attacked by sharks unprotected by a cage.  The film was supposedly to be set in Brazil but moved to Yucaton, Mexico.  Principal photography for the film took place in the Dominican Republic, Pinewood Studios, Dominican Republic, The Underwater Studio in Basildon and Pinewood Studios, UK.

Four teenage girls scuba diving in a ruined underwater city quickly find themselves in a watery hell as their adventure turns to horror when they learn they are not alone in the submerged caves.  As they swim deeper into the claustrophobic labyrinth of caves, they enter the territory of the deadliest shark species in the ocean.  The species is supposed to have developed heightened senses for the silly reason that these sharks need to survive in deep underwater without sight, as there is no light in the far depths of the ocean.  Yet, the sharks keep missing their prey.

Mia (Sophe Nelisse) and Sasha (Corinne Foxx) are two half sisters who do not get along- till of course they bond after their encounter with the sharks – no surprise here.  They are led by Alexa (Brianne Tju), followed by troublemaker Nicole (Sistine Stallone), the latter take risks at the expense of others to satisfy her curiosity.  Needless to say, she is the first one to go.  The cast is eclectic enough with a white, a black and an asian forming three of the girls.  Surprising for a film set in Mexico, there is hardly a Mexican to be seen on the screen.

Nothing much happens for the first third of the film, where director Roberts takes his time to establish the relationship between the sisters, Mia and her schoolmates that eventually lead nowhere.  The action and mishaps are all too predictable.  When all the thrills appear exhausted, the sharks suddenly appear – not one but many. The underwater photography is impressive.

The music is a hash of old hits including the Carpenters’ song “We’ve Only Just Begun”, which is an odd choice for the movie.

The film is obviously a cash grab banging not the success of the original 2017 movie, providing much more of the same which in other words, ends up quite the bore, even at 90 minutes.


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