The Meg: the return of the shark cinema


The natural horror is a subgenre that has managed to stay in force from the beginnings of commercial cinema until today. In the films that are grouped under this category, danger and evil are usually embodied in monstrous animals, appealing to one of the great terrors that has plagued the human being since its early stages of the evolutionary process: the fear of being devoured by creatures of nature.

It all started in 1925 with the film adaptation of a successful dinosaur novel written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The Lost World was directed by Harry O. Today, a silent film that is considered a milestone in the history of animation, particularly the technique of stop motion, and that also represents the birth of a niche, from that moment the viewers of the seventh art would turn to see every time a monstrous creature threatened to devour the movie theaters.

As in real life, where some people suffer from phobia of dogs, others to rats, and others, including harmless salamanders, in the cinema there has been space to portray the terrifying facet of how much animal there is, Creature From The Black Lagoon (1954) in the United States and Godzilla (1954) in Japan are two of the great exponents of the genre as it was conceived in the middle of the 20th century. In 1963, the master of suspense, Alfred Hitchcock would surprise the world with The Birds , an exquisite film where birds become the biggest predator of the human being for two hours.

It would be until 1975 that natural horror would reach its highest and most terrifying point on the big screen. That year, Jaws , distributed in Colombia as Tiburón , by Steven Spielberg, became the highest grossing film in the history of cinema until that moment, unseating The Godfather (1972) and being only surpassed two years later by Star Wars: A New Hope (1977). The soundtrack by John Williams, the meticulous development of credible characters, and the impressive special effects, are just some of the elements that make Shark one of the most influential films in the history of Hollywood horror, and a precursor of a subgenre that nonexistent moment: the horror of sharks.

Of all the living beings that could find a potential sandwich in the exponents of the human race, none has had as much demonization in the cinema as the shark, to Jaws they are added tapes like Deep Blue Sea (1999), Open Water (2003) , and The Shallows (2016).

The year 2018 receives the surprise delivery of The Meg , a film starring actors Jason Statham and Li Bingbing, and that is breaking the global box office. The entertaining film is a co-production between the United States and China, which has a spectacular display of special effects where the creature of nightmares is a prehistoric shark, the extinct Megalodon. The greater merit of The Meg is to have managed to remove the shark genre from the dark depths of the B-class cinema, where they kept it relegated because of tapes like Sharktopus (2010) and Sharknado (2015).


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