Pacific Rim – Movie Review

movie reviewThe reason why I wanted to see this film was simple. In this sea of remakes, prequels, sequels and ‘based of’ movies, I wanted to give this one my money simply to show respect and be thankful… because this movie is based on an original story. And nowadays such big movies are always played safe by the big studios. It’s sad that such projects don’t happen more often. But maybe, if this movies does good enough at the box office, we will have more original ideas in the future. *Fingers crossed* Now how was the actual movie?

The story is fairly simple. Earth gets attacked by giant monsters. But not from space! No! They are coming from the bottom of the ocean. Through a mysterious portal with unknown origins. When the first monsters ruin complete citFies all over the Earth, it’s time for resistance! Governments of the Earth unite and start a program to build giant robot machines, so called Jaegers, to fight these huge gigantic monsters. But the monsters seem to learn and adjust to Earth’s defence tactics. Soon enough the monsters become larger and much more dangerous. Things look grim and plans to solve the mystery and attacks are rare. But still! There is one plan that might work! So the battle begins.

We follow a young Jaeger pilot who has lost his brother when they were both fighting one of these giant monsters. The Jaeger robots need two pilots to fully expand their abilities. Both pilots must be synched up through some sort of brainlink. Naturally brothers are perfect pilots for these robots. Something goes wrong though and our hero loses his brother and decides to quit the job. Sure enough he gets reactivated for the last chance of getting rid of that portal. So he comes back and learns that the Jaeger program will soon be stopped. So the team decides to go for that one plan that might help to end this war.

The plot is more than simple and the characters almost a cliché with and no depth to them. But still, I came to the conclusion that I found it all very refreshing. I cannot exactly tell why it worked in this movie and doesn’t in others. Maybe the answer is simple… maybe it’s just because everything felt as if it’s just right for this story and what this movie wants to be. It’s by far not a movie that will win any prizes for intelligence. The heroes are the robots and the monsters. Even though it might be a little unfair. Since the movie gives us a lot of character (even though they feel a little flat) moments as well. It’s surely no desaster porn crapfest like so many other movies of its kind.

Pacific Rim takes its time when needed. That goes for the character moments as well as the fight scenes. It succeeds more in the fight scenes though. For a long time I was finally able to see again what was actually going on in the fights. So many movies today are just quick cut, shaky cam clusterf*ck diashows. You can barely see who is beating who and who is hurt where. Pacific Rim made it right! For the first time in a long while I was actually captured by these fight sequences. Yes they were loud, shiny and bombastic like the other stuff you usually get to see. But here we can actually see the movements and the consequences of a big hit. You were able to see the weight of the robots when they started to swing a huge punch at one of the monsters. They nailed the physics extremely well. Stuff like that is not easy to get done well. And that massive attention to detail really helped to make the fight scenes as capturing as they were. I enjoyed them a lot and they never actually felt too long.

This movie is very much over the top. And there are things that come with that fact. For one thing it’s that sometimes the dialogue gets a little repetitive. Especially when it’s time for another one of these motivational speeches. Overall the dialogue is very comic’ish and almost a little too filled with lofty words. That’s certainly not everyone’s taste for sure. Some might even say it’s dumb. But again you have to keep in mind what kind of movie this is. They decided to go down that route from minute one of the movie. You can already tell in the first 2 minutes what kind of movie you are going to see. Just the way the voice over delivers the lines for the background story is enough to say, “Hey, this movie wants to have fun! Stay with us and enjoy the ride!”.

The acting in the movie was appropriate. Nothing special to mention. They all seemed to have fun and enjoyed the production. I just wished Idris Elba would get a nice and good movie for himself soon. He’s always leaving an impression, even if he’s just a supporting cast.

From a technical perspective this movie was top notch. The production design, camera work, color palette and VFX work… everything pretty much the best you can get nowadays. Only one thing that I noticed. There wasn’t a single battle at daytime. I wished there would have been at least one. But if you think about, of course they were at night. It’s the best way to hide not so perfect model or texturing details. =D On the flipside that helped to make the battles be readable, because the VFX crew had the chance to keep the camera on the scene, without all these rapid fire quick cuts we all know from movies like Transformers.

Overall it’s a “turn your brain off and have fun” movie. Comparisons to Transformers are not fair though, since the ‘brain off’ factor seems to work with Pacific Rim. Something I just couldn’t do with the Transformers movies.


Pacific Rim on IMDb

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