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Let’s face it, after all the pre-release hype, you’re probably deeply disappointed with Meg 2: The Trench. Luckily, over the last few years, China has made some awesome monster flicks to wash away the bad taste.
Regardless of how you want to look at it, The Meg 2: The Trench is a Chinese movie. Sure, it might have a British lead, a Spanish bad guy and a few Americans in the good guy camp, but two of our three main leads are Chinese and the movie is set in or around the coast of South East China.
Then there is the fact that the movie follows the Chinese monster movie M.O. to a tee – the monsters are actually a side focus of the movie: the real villains are always humans – rich, greedy, selfish humans. And almost always they are doing something bad to the environment. It’s kind of like the original Godzilla playbook. Kind of.
So if Meg 2: The Trench has left a bad taste in your mouth, let me present to you five Chinese monster movies that are actually quite fun – and don’t push the social message narrative that strongly. These movies focus more on monsters or creatures, and that’s what makes them more fun.
In no particular order, and not keeping this exclusive to shark films, let’s check out five Chinese monster movies that are better than Meg 2!
Rising Boas In A Girl’s School
This movie is a prime example of how insane and entertaining Chinese monster movies can actually get, and it has a plot so ridiculous that even The Asylum would stand up and applaud at how crazy it is.
Firstly let’s get the forced message out of the way: breeding animals for the purpose of making luxury goods is evil. I think we can all agree on that one, so nothing too dramatic.
Here’s the plot: set in a remote valley, an underground laboratory is breeding snakes for the purpose of making leather handbags. But the scientists have experimented too much and created a massive constrictor that goes on a rampage. And where does it go on that rampage?
Well, would you believe right next door to the laboratory is a Flight Attendant Finishing school, completely populated with some of the most beautiful women in China? This snake has good taste, and decides to stalk around the campus eating any girls it can and threatening to disrupt their graduation ceremony!
But nothing gets in the way of graduating students, so these girls, with the help of a goofy security guard, fight back. In a hilarious nod to the video game Dead Rising, they create a bunch of homemade weapons out of everyday items that would make Frank West proud. Heck, MacGyver would be proud too!
This movie has it all. Huge snakes, cute girls, shower scenes, sex, double-crosses, crazy stunts, lovable characters and one hell of an ending. This is one monster movie that you won’t regret watching!
RISING BOAS IN A GIRLS’ SCHOOL (2022) Reviews and free to watch on YouTube – now with 2 new clips
Escape of Shark aka Escape from the Shark’s Mouth
It makes sense to have a shark movie on this list, right? Since you are probably looking for a Meg 2 replacement, you might as well check this out! However, be forewarned, this isn’t a megalodon – this is just a normal everyday shark.
Set in a resort full of good-looking and rich tourists, a tsunami causes a massive tidal wave by the coast, washing a hungry killer shark to shore! A handful of tourists, including a woman and her father, a resort worker and his sexy ex, and a rich idiot and his bodyguard, are trapped in the resort waiting for their rescue.
But the hungry shark has a different idea. Stalking the survivors through the resort, he slowly takes them out until they can work out a way to defeat him. But even in defeat, the shark manages to get one last kill, much to the satisfaction of the viewer!
This movie is nice and short, which makes it a perfect popcorn film to watch before you settle into your main event for the evening. But if your main event is Meg 2, then you might watch to check this film out afterwards, because this one is a lot of fun.
ESCAPE FROM THE SHARK’S MOUTH (2021) Reviews of action horror
And once you’ve had your fill of the standard-sized sharks from the previous movie, then you should definitely move on to this film, where a massive giant shark is not only a menace in the water but a menace on land!
Welcome to Land Shark – a tale as old as time, where a crazy rich scientist decides to cross shark and earthworm DNA to create the ultimate bioweapon!
Ok, so this movie won’t win any awards in the plot stakes, and the characters are about as one-dimensional as you can possibly get including the drunken expert who saves the day, the super hottie scientist and the arrogant rich man! But the movie more than makes up for it in the crazy fun stakes.
Putting aside the rather lacklustre CGI, which is common for these films, Land Shark takes place near a tourist location full of lots of human playtoys.
The rules in this movie don’t always make sense. Sometimes the shark travels easily across the land, sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes it eats everyone in its path, other times it lets whole families survive!
In the end, though, it doesn’t really matter what this movie is about other than there is a massive shark that causes carnage on land, easily living up to its name.
LAND SHARK (2020) Reviews of Chinese monster movie – free to watch online
Monty Python 2
From sharks, we go back to snakes in what could be one of the most entertaining giant snake movies ever to come out of the modern Chinese monster movie movement.
Monty Python 2, no relation to the British comedy troupe and a very weak link to the original film, carries with it a strong environmental message: don’t dump toxic waste into the water.
And definitely don’t do it so close to the location of a new luxury hotel!
Snakes, and lots of them including the massive Monty of the title, infiltrate a hotel, leaving it up to the over-stressed hotel manager and his attractive assistant to save the day! Some hilarious secondary characters including the spectacled towel-wearer who is always in the wrong place at the wrong time, and a crazy fight in a male toilet that results in the entire room getting destroyed headline the insanity of this film.
While some spotty CGI is the only downside, there is a great montage of outtakes at the end of the film showing off the fun time that the cast and crew had in making this made-for-web instant classic.
If there’s one word to describe a tsunami, then crazy is probably not the one I would use, but that didn’t stop the filmmakers of this crocodile film, which is more of a creature feature than a monster movie, but I’m keeping this one on this list.
A natural disaster hits the party town of a Southeast Asian location, causing a tsunami to flood a local Chinese district whose presence was already under threat by an evil businessman who wants their land.
Enter a displaced and hungry crocodile, who gracefully floats through the flooded district snacking on the eclectic but entertaining group of survivors, which includes an estranged father and daughter who use this crisis to mend their fractured relationship.
Some exciting set pieces are peppered throughout this short but thrilling movie that ends in a sewer with the massive croc desperate for a final snack. For those of you who are fans of Chinese actress Daniella Wang, check out her role as the main baddie’s assistant – a role a long way away from her oft-naked performance in the Hong Kong sex comedy Due West: Our Sex Journey. You’re welcome on that tip.
Interestingly, while this – and in fact, all the movies on this list – are made-for-web productions, this movie received an official Blu-ray release in Germany! Viva physical media for preserving a future classic creature feature like this.
CRAZY TSUNAMI aka CROCODILE TSUNAMI (2021) Reviews and now free to watch online!
Guest article by The Arty Dans
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