The fact that MS vs GO comes from The Asylum is either a cause for alarm or for celebration, depending on your tastes. The Asylum, see, is the Designer Imposter Fragrances of the movie world: they're the ones responsible for Snakes on a Train. When The Day the Earth Stood Still hit theaters, The Asylum rushed to release The Day the Earth Stopped. Michael Bay's Transformers, meet The Asylum's Transmorphers...and so on and so on. They're shameless, and I kinda dig that. However, my grudging admiration doesn't mean their films are actually any good; rather they're an orgy of awful: bad acting, bad CGI, bad green screen, and bad writing combine to form a sweaty miasma of- you guessed it- bad movie awesomeness. Suffice it to say, Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus had a lot to live up to.
If there's one thing I learned from my beloved Shark Attack 3: Megalodon (and believe me, I've learned way more than one mere thing!), it's that nothing gets the blood pumping like hot, hot underwater mini-sub throttle action. Right off the bat, MS vs GO doesn't disappoint: Deborah Gibson and a pal are tooling around in a mini-sub, looking for...stuff...and there's plenty of button-pushing and throttle throttling to satisfy even the most cynical movie fan.
What's perhaps most magical is that sometimes Deborah Gibson is wearing goth nail polish, and sometimes she's not.
Let's get this out of the way: I love Deborah Gibson in this movie. I like the fact that she's got some years on her. She's earnest, a bit charming, and she manages to say lines like "There's poetry here!" in a way that doesn't completely make you want to kill yourself. Bravo, Asylum, for casting her. I hope she's in every movie ever made from now on, amen.
Some Army dudes or something or other drop some sonar something something...eh, it didn't make much sense. Just know this: the mega-shark and the giant octopus were frozen in place as they were grappling (presumably) to the death (the Ice Age came on fuckin' fast, y'all), but now they're free! Free to grapple! Free to fight! Free to
And kill they do, sort of. Frankly, the trailer shows all the best bits, like when the mega-shark takes down the Golden Gate Bridge...
...or when it inexplicably leaps...what, 15,000 feet into the air to take down a jumbo jet:
Besides the OBVIOUS amazingness of the sequence, the shark vs plane scene provided another moment that will live forever in my heart of hearts: as the plane hits some turbulence, a stewardess asks a man to take his seat. The man replies, "I'm getting married in two days." It makes no sense- did he then expect her to respond with "Oh, sir, we had no idea- in that case we'll go around the turbulence!"? I assume it's supposed to add some poignancy to the man's imminent death at the mega-teeth of mega-shark, but all it adds, in the end, is more nonsensical awesomeness.
These positively mysterious deaths cause Deborah Gibson and her cronies to DO SOME SCIENCE. Apparently they work at the Kool-Aid Institute for Underwater Studies, as their "research" involves pouring one colored liquid into a container of another colored liquid, then frowning at the results.
My oh my, I love it when people do science in movies.
After she has sex with a co-worker in the employee breakroom, Deborah Gibson has an idea: they should use pheromones to lure the mega-shark and the giant octopus into some kinda traps! It's a foolproof plan, I tells ya! Lorenzo Lamas shows up as some sort of...err, Army guy, I guess, whose job it is to have a ponytail and to glower.
I'll admit, Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus was a somewhat rollicking good time up until this point; then everyone piled into a submarine and the proceedings came to a big, fat, grinding halt as there was about a half an hour of this:
Deborah Gibson looking concerned, the...uh...submarine driver looking nervous, the captain saying "steady!", and Lorenzo Lamas hiding his face in shame. Seriously, this went on forever.
Eventually, the mega-shark and the giant octopus resume their battle, and I have to wonder what happened between them that caused them to hold a grudge for millions of years. I bet it involved infidelity. Somehow, in my dreams, a weave is also involved.
The biggest fault with Mega-Shark vs Giant Octopus is that there's simply not enough mega-shark vs giant octopus. That's what folks wanna see- these two CGI behemoths duking it out. We want to see more ridiculous, impossible outrageousness. If the shark took down the Golden Gate Bridge, then why couldn't the octopus go after the Statue of Liberty? It's all made out of computer anyway, so the filmmakers should just balls-out go for it. It's not about making it real, it's about making it fun. Unfortunately, the fun to not-fun ratio in this film is roughly 1:5. I expect those odds to improve in the sequel. Yes, the ending sets up for one, and yes, I'm already looking forward to it- especially if Deborah Gibson is back to do more science!