Pacific Rim ***½
Pacific Rim begins with an incredibly entertaining backstory informing us that ‘we’ the human race had gotten it wrong, we were looking to the skies for clues to an alien invasion. A fissure between two tectonic plates in the Pacific opens up a portal that allows Kaiju, giant Godzilla inspired monsters access to cities bordering the Pacific Ocean… Massive destruction ensues.
The human race fights back by building Jaegers, giant robots manned by two pilots, linked by mind-meld technology called ‘The Drift’. Jumping forward a few years and Jaeger pilots are treated like rock stars. Our hero, Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam) and his brother Yancey, pilot their Jaeger against a Kaiju off Anchorage… things don’t go well and Yancey is killed. Another five years later and Raleigh is ‘off the grid’ working construction on a giant sea wall along the Pacific coastline. He’s called back into service by his ex-commander, Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) to co-pilot his old robot out of Hong Kong with a new partner… More massive destruction ensues.
Directed by Guillermo Del Toro, Pacific Rim is visually spectacular. The Hong Kong city sets are reminiscent of Blade Runner, run down neon reflected in rain-swept streets. It’s here we feature a quirky side story with Ron Perlman as a dealer in Kaiju parts. The visual effects are as spectacular as you would expect, and work exceptionally well in the 3D format, although a few more wide shots would have allowed us to take in the scale more clearly.
The movie only falls flat in the non-effects driven sequences as the dialogue is fairly cheesy and delivered a little too straight most of the time and a little too comical from the ‘scientists’ who help Pentecost look for a way to bring the Kaiju down. Del Toro got the balance right with the Hellboy movies but it generally falls flat throughout most of Pacific Rim. A special mention must got to the two ‘Australian’ Jaeger pilots, as they deliver some of the worst accents I’ve ever heard.
But we go to see these movies for the spectacle, and Pacific Rim delivers more than its fair share in that department. The battles are huge and numerous, matching and exceeding the Transformers battles. This is blockbuster popcorn entertainment on a massive scale. Not Del Toro’s best work, but it’s great to have him back directing again after his numerous scripting and producing duties over the last few years. My 7 year old is jumping out of his skin to see this, he’ll see it on the weekend and his review will follow, but I can guarantee now it will be five stars from him.
July 12, 2013 | Categories: REVIEW: Pacific Rim | Tags: Action, Aliens, Art, Blockbuster, Charlie Day, Charlie Hunnam, Comedy, Comic Book Movies, Cult, Franchise, Godzilla, Guillermo Del Toro, Hollywood, Icons, Idris Elba, Images, jaegers, Kaiju, Kikuchi Rinko, Post Apocalyptic, Rinko Kikuchi, Ron Perlman, Suspense, Thriller, Violence | Leave a comment