Ken’s Film Reviews: “47 Meters Down: Uncaged (2019)”


“A bargain bin shark/horror film, as ineffective as all it’s jumpscares”

The Story (Summary from

The film starts at a girls school in Yucatan, Mexico. Mia (Sophie Nelisse) is pushed into the pool by mean girl Catherine (Brec Bassinger). Mia’s stepsister Sasha (Corinne Foxx) doesn’t help her and even denies being her sister. They are picked up by Sasha’s mom Jennifer (Nia Long), who married Mia’s dad Grant (John Corbett). Sasha tells her parents none of the other girls like Mia, while the latter reiterates the former’s claim that they aren’t sisters.

Over a meal, Grant shows Mia a shark tooth he found on one of his cave-diving expeditions, and he gives it to her, as she shares his interest in discoveries like this. Mia and Sasha are told that they are set up to go on a boat to see the sharks, which doesn’t make Sasha happy since she was planning on hanging out with friends.

Grant and his two assistants Ben (Davi Santos) and Carl (Khylin Rhambo) drop the girls off as they set out on another cave-diving venture nearby. The girls see that Catherine is there with her friends. Sasha’s friends Alexa (Brianne Tju) and Nicole (Sistine Stallone) drive up to get Sasha out of there. She reluctantly convinces Mia to come along since she knows she would rather be anywhere than stuck with Catherine. The girls give Catherine the finger and head off.

The girls arrive near a cliffside by a cave and jump in the water. Mia actually starts to have fun with Sasha and her friends. They then grab scuba gear and decide to go exploring nearby since it is in the ruins of an ancient Mayan temple. They swim through the cave and find many old carvings, as well as many skeletons. Nicole sees a blind Mexican Tetra swimming nearby. Alexa notes that it has been there a while and doesn’t need eyes since it has adapted. The Tetra swims toward Nicole and frightens her when it screeches, causing her to bump into columns that causes a commotion, splitting the girls up. Mia and Alexa find each other and then come across Ben, which means Carl and Grant are not far. A shark then pops out and kills Ben, causing the girls to flee. They swim into Sasha and Nicole again, and they tell them about the shark.

The shark attacks the girls, but since it is blind, it uses its hearing senses to find them. It crashes into the columns and leaves the girls trapped for a moment. Once they get free, Mia and Sasha suggest they find Grant and Carl using a guideline that will lead them to where they were working. The girls swim through catacombs and see that the line ends there. Regardless, they continue to swim forward while also minding the fact that the oxygen in their tanks is running low. The shark then pops out again, forcing them to hide behind a cage for protection. They escape by making it through a passageway too narrow for the shark to fit through. They make it into an air pocket to get oxygen back while trying to figure out their next move. Mia swims down and sees a gap that she can fit through and she goes for it.

Mia swims nearby where Carl is working and listening to music. Unfortunately, he doesn’t see the shark and promptly becomes its next meal. An emergency alarm then goes off as he is being shredded. Mia hears more music and finds herself alone and scared as she comes across Carl’s remains. She eventually finds Grant, and the two go together to find the other girls. They are attacked by the shark again, and they fend it off using the sounds of a nearby bell, plus a blowtorch. The five reach the surface in the cave and use the alarm to scare the shark off temporarily.

Grant points out a harness at the top for them to climb out of. Alexa starts to ascend first, but the sharks come to surface and Nicole panics, and jumps up to climb ahead of her. The harness starts to come loose with their combined weight, and although Nicole reaches the top, she slips and falls back down into the water before being quickly killed by two sharks.

Grant and the girls then figure they need to swim to a nearby gap to get out of there, but the shark gets Grant moments later and is killed, leaving Mia and Sasha devastated. They swim together with Alexa to try and get out of there. They come across a current that pulls Sasha away from Mia and Alexa. The shark finds them again and attacks Alexa, but she evades it. However, she loses her oxygen tank and scuba mask, drowning shortly thereafter.

Mia finds Sasha and they end up swimming to the surface. They find a boat and try to signal it. It turns out to be the boat that they would have gotten on to see the sharks. Someone on the boat is listening to music and can’t hear the girls calling, while he dumps chum into the water for the sharks. This lures a few more sharks in their direction. Mia and Sasha bang on the glass where the guests can see them, and they run to alert the crew. Mia makes it up on the boat, but Sasha gets pulled in by a shark. Mia grabs a flare gun and jumps in to save Sasha by firing the flare at the shark’s face. Just as they get back, another shark grabs Mia and pulls her in. She frees herself by taking the shark tooth and slicing across the shark’s side to injure it, freeing herself. The people on the boat pull Mia in before another shark can get her, (By the end, Mia and Sasha are remaining survivors after being an dreadful experience).

The girls receive medical attention, but Mia and Sasha are just glad that they still have each other.

My Thoughts

The opening scene of this film shows a very strange shot of pieces of stone in pitch black water. We’re led to believe that we’re looking at a scene from the ocean floor, but the movie does this weird fake out where it’s revealed we’re actually looking at the bottom of a school water fountain. This opening dragged on for quite a bit while having no punch at the end, and I really didn’t understand why, though we’re going to see that is an unfortunate recurring problem in this film. 

The introductory scene to our main two protagonists shows us two girls who apparently are step-siblings, though their relationship is strained at best. One step-sibling is being bullied by the local high-school popular girl, and I was questioning myself for a while if I was watching a shark horror film, or if someone had placed a different disc in the box. It very much felt like Mean Girls and Jaws had a one-night stand, producing a weird love child as a result. I did not care for this story element at all, as it felt like it did not belong in this film. 

Once we get to the meat and potatoes of the film where our four girls head off to begin their ill-fated cave diving adventure, I appreciated the very youthful feel this film tries to go for. Driving down a road at a high rate of speed with wind blowing through your hair and rock music blasting in the background mixed very nicely with the beautiful tropical Mexican background. This was a very light-hearted and enjoyable moment for the characters, which contrasted well with what the girls had in their not so distant future. 

One scene I felt was quite nonsensical is when the girls have gotten out of the vehicle and are walking to the swimming spot. Here they are in a super dense Mexican tropical forest, with snakes and bugs and every manner of nasty and dangerous critters in the world lurking about, and they’re wearing virtually nothing. Obviously this isn’t the biggest deal in the world, but as someone who has gotten very bad poison oak poisoning in the past due to walking around in shorts, this scene was making me cringe. 

As we’re getting a chance to view these four characters interacting and speaking with each other, I found “Nicole,” played by Sistine Stallone (yes, she’s the daughter of Sylvester Stallone), to come off as especially obnoxious. The strange thing is though, I’m not sure if that is what Stallone was actually aiming to achieve with her acting performance. She comes off as a stereotypical “valleygirl” and I found myself wishing her character a quick death so that I would not have to listen to her speak for too long. I unfortunately do not think I will be going out of my way in the future to watch anything starring Sistine, which is quite disappointing considering her father is one of my all-time favorite actors. 

After the girls strap on their diving equipment and begin making their way into the Mayan ruins, I realized that aside from the main character of Mia, I did not remember the names of the other three characters. The film spends little time introducing us to these four characters to begin with, and I found myself simply not caring about these individuals due to them being nothing but nameless faces to me.  

Another matter which took me out of the film is just how foolish these girls are in the first place. The four of them together have virtually no diving experience what-so-ever, yet here they are about to deep dive into an unknown ruin with no way of keeping direction or contacting the outside world in an emergency. I understand you really have to suspend belief for many horror films to work, but a seven year old would have been yelling at these girls that what they were doing was a bad idea. All I could think was “Y’all are idiots, and deserve to die.” 

When the girls get inside the main chamber room of this ruin, Sistine Stallone’s already poor acting skills take a straight nose-dive into the ground. At one point, Sistine’s character believes she saw something, causing her to say aloud “Oh my God, did you see that?!” This particular line sounds different from all other dialogue in the film, as it sounds as if the producers dubbed over the original film audio, and had Sistine re-say this in a studio booth. Somehow, this re-dubbed version of the line easily sounds worse than whatever the original delivery of the line was. Instead of sounding like someone in a dark ruin fearing for their life, Sistine sounds like she’s sitting on her couch watching the news, asking her friend if they also saw the weatherman’s pants fall down. 

Shortly thereafter, we get our first look at some ocean life in the form of a small fish. Immediately, you realize that this film relies on both heavy and plainly shitty CGI. This fish looks absolutely horrible, reminding me of something from Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace, only this film released in 2019, not 1999. 

We get our first kill and jumpscare, which like most things in this film, is very disappointing. It’s so abrupt and out of the blue that I genuinely laughed instead of being frightened. Just like the fish, the shark looks equally as poor, being absolutely unforgivable considering this is the main attraction of the film. We get quite a few shots of the shark up close and personal in light, which only exposes it’s early 2000s CGI even worse. Easily one of the worst sharks I’ve ever seen in film. 

After their initial run-in with the horribly pixelated shark, the girls spend the next fifteen minutes or so frantically swimming around in the dark. There seemed to be absolutely no reason for all of these shots to be included aside from the fact that the director and producers were just trying to burn up as much time as possible to make the film a certain length. Earlier on at this point already, I was rooting for all the girls to die just so the film could be over. 

The next portion of the film is mainly filled up by the girls worrying about their oxygen levels while having many run-ins with the shark, almost all of which follow the same pattern of the girls speaking together in a group with said shark rushing out from the darkness and trying to snag one of them. It’s extremely formulaic and I found myself very much wanting to turn the movie off and do something else, but I pushed through for the purpose of this review. All of the jumpscares are bland, and not a single one ever got me. 

Once the girls find Mia’s father and are about to escape, Stallone’s character of Nicole is dragged down to the depths and ripped apart by two sharks, which got an audible cheer from me. The other three actresses are all decent throughout the film, but still were never able to make me care about their characters. This film was absolutely make or break based upon the sharks, which were easily a break. 

As the main characters really start dying off one by one as we approach the conclusion of the film, I was feeling absolutely nothing except relief that the credits were soon near. The two step-siblings are the only survivors at the end, though the movie does TWO fakeouts back-to-back where the sisters are taken back to the deep end after reaching safety but again, it felt like producers were artificially beefing up the films run-time. There’s a moment at the very end where Mia bumps back into the mean girl from the beginning of the film, and absolutely nothing occurs. As I said at the beginning of my thoughts, I still have no clue what purpose the existence of the mean girl serves. 

47 Meters Down: Uncaged is ultimately a film which does a lot more wrong than right. While it does have some decent moments like beautiful camera shots and telling a decent if mediocre story of the step-siblings going from disliking each other to growing close by the end of the film, it has a ton of problems. The story rushes along so quickly that we don’t even learn character names before they’re dying off, much of the dialogue between the girls is atrocious, Sistine Stallone gives a horrible performance as Nicole, the shark CGI is dated even by mid-2000s standards, everyone is forgettable, needlessly drawn out scenes make it quickly lose interest, and at the end of it all, I simply DID NOT CARE. 

Pros and Cons


*Set locations are beautiful

*Step-sibling bonding story is decent


*Character introductions is horribly rushed

*Dialogue is downright cringe worthy 

*Especially poor performance from Sistine Stallone

*Creature CGI is horribly dated

*All characters are forgettable

*About 20% of the film is needless dross 

Overall Score


Published by Ken Van Conover

As a small two year old boy, my father sat me down one day in front of a PlayStation 1 to keep me occupied while he carried out some chores. It is here where I was first exposed to Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater, as well as Mortal Kombat Trilogy. Little did my father know that his action that day would lead me to a life-long love of videos games. Here, I plan on writing detailed reviews for any and all games, ranging from the NES and Sega Master System, to the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5. I hope you will join us, and have much enjoyment along the way! Be sure to hit me up on Xbox Live! My username is DarkDemon352