Film Review: 47 Meters Down (2017)

‘There were several faults with 47 Meters Down, which fell mainly at the lap of the writer and director’

2017 in Cinema:

47 Meters Down, 2017

Directed by: Johannes Roberts

Starring: Claire Holt, Mandy Moore, Chris J. Johnson, Yani Gellman, Santiago A. Segura, Matthew Modine


47 Meters? More like 47 Foreshadows. While that may be a bit of an exaggeration, 47 Meters Down suffered from its continuous use of foreshadowing:

  • ‘The cage is safe’ – it wasn’t.
  • ‘He dumped me because I was boring’ – they go cage-diving with sharks.
  • ‘Don’t lose my camera’ – they lost his camera.
  • ‘Two oxygen tanks can cause hallucinations’ – guess what happened?

And this took away most of the suspense from the film as they were practically telling you most of the things that would happen. 47 Meters Down is about two American sisters who decide to take a holiday to Mexico, but, just before they go, Lisa’s (Mandy Moore) boyfriend ends the relationship because she has made it boring. Kate (Claire Holt) then uses this to fuel her gains by forcing her to party in Mexico. There they meet two Mexicans who offer them a discounted price to go cage-diving with sharks, and, after reservations from Lisa, Kate played the ‘don’t be boring’ card (after assuring her everything would be fine) and they agreed. The cage then sinks and they are trapped and stuck at the bottom of the sea. ‘Everything will be fine’, she said.

Admittedly the presentation of the film is actually very good, despite its low budget (of roughly $5m). Constantly panning the camera around showcasing all the fish and the sharks, as well as the darkness due to their depth, really brings on a fear of claustrophobia. And the performances from Moore and Holt (more so Moore) were decent-enough; each looking terrified at not only the sharks but their predicament. But those cannot take away from the fact it’s quite a slow-paced film, with not enough tension being made outside of their predicament. It’s hard (considering where they are) but a lot of the time spent at the bottom is them talking and worrying about their oxygen, and the sharks don’t feature as much (only once did they attack the cage before leaving for a long spell). A greater sense of urgency and more suspense would have dramatically helped this film (as would have an ending where it wasn’t foreshadowed so obviously just moments beforehand).

While it was appealing on the eye, and the cast did all they could with it, there were several faults with 47 Meters Down, which fell mainly at the lap of the writer and director. More needed to happen at the bottom of the sea, and an extra ten-minutes beforehand spent on character development and a more subtle and realistic dialogue (without its terrible foreshadowing) would have all helped this film tremendously.


Plot: * *     Acting: * * *     Writing: * *     Presentation: * * *

Overall Rating: * * ½



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