Thursday, July 18, 2013

Pacific Rim - Movie Review

Starring Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, Ron Perlman, Rob Kazinsky, Clifton Collins Jr. and Burn Gorman.  Directed by Guillermo Del Toro.


It's giant robots fighting the monsters that Godzilla's not here to kill.  We're clear on this, right?

I always give a movie its premise.  An inter-dimensional rift has opened on the floor of the Pacific Ocean, allowing 150-foot-tall creatures to come through and terrorize coastlines.  I accept this.  The world came together and built 150-foot-tall robots called jaegars to fight them, operated by two pilots.  Of course they did.

I wound up enjoying this a lot more than my wife.

We're somewhere around the year 2025 for this action, where the kaiju (the monsters) have become part of everyday life.  They have fluorescent lines on them for some reason, and more than one scene, I couldn't help think that they were really thinking about the toy line in designing some of these.

Anyway, the story revolves around Raleigh Becket (Hunnam), a jaeger pilot who quit after his brother died in battle.  He's called in for duty when the diminished jaeger corps need his help.  We meet the other teams, and it's like meeting other video game characters ("the Russians!"), and we see their unique jaegers (where do they get those wonderful toys?).

Elba brings movie-star charisma to his role as the leader, and he gets his pre-battle speech that blows Bill Pullman's Independence Day monologue out of the water.  I was confused by Hunnam. His accent was all over the place so I couldn't tell if he was American, or something else.  Charlie Day was funny in the Rick Moranis role.  His sidekick (Burn Gorman) was a bit too cartoony for my taste.  He made me think of Emmerich's Godzilla, and you do not want to do that.

It's over two hours, and it has one too many obstacles thrown at our heroes in Act III.  I wanted to check my watch a couple times during some of the final fighting, a cardinal sin in an action film.  Most of the time, though, I was digging it.

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