I’ve just got back from watching Pacific Rim and I felt the need to put down some thoughts.
If you’re looking for an unbiased opinion on this film then you’re not likely to find one here. I’ve been a fan of giant robots and monsters my whole life. I grew up watching Transformers, Ultraman, Power Rangers, Godzilla, Gunbuster, Guyver (not quite giant and not quite a robot), etc. I’m also a huge fan of Guillermo del Toro. I think he’s one of most talented directors working today. I love how he’s as at home making big Hollywood movies (Hellboy) as he is making his small Spanish films (Pans Labyrinth, Devil’s Backbone). His big movies still have the same atmosphere, character development and look as his smaller ones.
So you won’t be surprised to learn that I absolutely loved Pacific Rim. It’s a love song to Japanese monster movies like Godzilla, mecha anime and I like to think there’s a fair amount of influence from everyone’s favourite 80s movie Robot Jox. The film gets straight to the point but manages to not feel like two hours of brain dead violence. The characters are likeable and nicely developed. Even the two doctors (the comic relief characters) come across well.
The monster/robot fight sequences are really something. There are some really crazy moments that had me laughing out loud. The fact there are two pilots in each robot gives a dose of camaraderie and humanity so it’s not ‘just’ a robot and a monster beating the shit out of each other.
It’s great to see a big hollywood movie that’s not backed by a soft rock soundtrack by bands like Nickelback. There are very few big actors, no product placement, no romantic subplot and definitely no US army recruitment propaganda as seen in Michael Bay’s Transformers movies. I’m glad to see it’s managed to do pretty well at the box office. Hopefully it’ll get a better result next week due to good word of mouth. Obviously all you are going to see it right?
Unfortunately I had to go to a 3D showing as there weren’t any convenient 2D ones. I still dislike 3D. It’s distracting, it makes the picture dark and confuses things when there’s a lot of fast action on screen. I’m tempted to go again in 2D to get the most out of it.
Make sure you show support and see it at the cinema. If Pacific Rim is success then Guillermo del Toro will be given the freedom to work on more projects like this which is definitely a good thing. Oh, there’s also the voice of Portal’s GlaDos for that little extra nerd-on.