Yesterday, I saw Pacific Rim to stay up on my sci-fi! If you wanna see weird giant robots fight weird giant monsters, you really have to wait until an hour or so into the movie. And that’s why we all went to see it right? Giant robots vs. giant monsters. It delivers on some pretty good monster designs. One monster reminds me of the Spitter from Jurassic Park, another is like a giant crab, and yet another looks like a Godzilla-thing. They devastate entire cities, and it’s up to the pilots of giant robots to stop them. But, I assume you knew that from the trailer.
Anyway, these giant robots basically are hooked up to the bodies of the pilots. A pilot and co-pilot control the right and left side. For a short while, it appears the movie will be nothing but this, but unfortunately it suffers from the same fate as The Wolverine. Notably, a slow romance subplot with the pilot’s commander acting as a guardian/father figure. Japanese derivatives like Power Rangers, Ultra Man, Neon Genesis Evangelion, and even Godzilla could get away with this because they were series, and the main characters often had other jobs to keep some action going on. It’s funny here to see Charlie from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia as a plucky scientist alongside Ron Perlman, also a scientist studying the monsters.
Besides the training montages and melodrama of the characters losses and relationships, when the robots fight the monsters it looks impressive because the pilots ARE THE MACHINES. And I’m a sucker for man-machine themes because of how I live with a wheelchair. Just for kicks though: Why even connect the two pilots? Yes, I know it causes neural overload. But, couldn’t they just compensate for that with some sort of inhibitor? I know, it just looks cool, and it bonds the humans to the machines. Thus making for giant robot monster punching.
They lose some Russians to the Spitter and then hatch the grand plan before the monsters flood the Earth. No spoilers here, but there’s one hold-up that Beckett’s commander (as the father figure.) wouldn’t risk the Japanese pilot, but they go anyway. I can’t say much else without giving spoilers, suffice it to say, they end up right in the monsters lair. In the Pacific Rim. Cities get destroyed!
Overall, a good giant robot movie, but where other giant robot movies have something else going on that builds to the plot, (and it undoubtedly did…with Charlie.) The rapport between the pilots is a little melodramatic and takes you out of the monster-fighting action. The Wolverine had the same problem, although this wasn’t as bad. At least they’re SUPPOSED to be training and montaging, and not having tea! I say give it a watch! If you like giant robots…well, there are better films (Robot Jox is always good!) but this is pretty good for what it is! Certainly not as bad as The Wolverine. B+! Go see it!