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Pacific Rim

Pacific Rim: Giant Robots Vs. Giant Monsters

  • Charlie HunnamIdris Elba...
  • Action & AdventureScience Fiction...
  • Guillermo del Toro
reviewed by
Marija Loncarevic
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Pacific Rim: Giant Robots Vs. Giant Monsters

Known for his vivid imagination, extraordinary imagery and an enduring fascination with monsters, Mexican director Guillermo Del Toro – famous for  Pan’s Labyrinth and the Hellboy film series – goes all out in his latest manifestation of giant robots vs. larger-than-life monstrosities in Pacific Rim.  
Set in the year 2020, the good people of Earth have been busy fighting a seven year war against the particularly unsympathetic Kaijus; Japanese for ‘gigantic monsters’. The tyrants have managed to travel to Earth via a dimensional space portal, located deep beneath the Pacific Ocean, in order to bring destruction upon humanity. 

In order to battle the beasts and protect civilization, humans have created equally colossal robots known as Jaegers – German for ‘hunters’ – which are operated from by two human pilots. Initially, the man-made machines stood strong against the villains and seemed like the perfect and only weapon to put away the malicious Kaiju for good. Unfortunately, it was all short lived; the Kaiju’s rapidly advancing technology leaves the Jaegers, and mankind, on the edge of extinction. 

With only a handful of Jaegers left and almost no funds at their disposal, it’s down to war-worn veteran Raleigh Becket (Hunnam) and his mysterious co-pilot, Mako Mori (Kikuchi), to save the day. Operating under orders from Commander Stacker Pentecost (Elba) and with the help of a hyperactive research crew of scientists, the pilots set off on their mission to put the Kaijus in their final resting place. 

The actual storyline is almost too simple, and the lifeless characters might raise an issue – if you let it. The script – co-written by Del Toro himself and Travis Beacham of Clash of the Titans – has no emotional core and invests little time in developing said characters. However, you won’t find yourself caring too much; the pure excitement and intensity hits the roof at times, so much so, that you quickly forget about the gaping deficiencies. To their credit, Hunnam and Kikuchi make reasonably solid leads and share an adequete amount of chemistry, whilst Elba, as the man in charge, offers a rock-hard, captivating performance. 

Pacific Rim is persistently loud and is almost too big of a pill to swallow; in terms of in-your-face nonstop destruction and chaos, it doesn’t hold back one bit. Visually stunning and at times literally breathtaking, Del Toro’s extraordinary eye for detail deserves credit; from the robot and monsters’ design to the nighttime battle sequences, CGI has never looked this good.  

Pacific Rim marks the first film in five years for the talented filmmaker and has strong elements working in its favor; it’s neither a sequel, reboot nor is it a remake.  It’s the monster mash of the year and if you love your monsters and you love them big, then this is the film for you.

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Transformers Series 1-3 (2007-2012), Prometheus (2012), Battleship (2012)

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Guillermo Del Toro drew inspiration from several paintings, including Francisco Goya's 'The Colossus' and Hokusai's 'The Great Wave off Kanagawa'.

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