You might be thinking, “Why would anyone watch a not-so-great movie nine years after it came out?” And you would have every right to think that, but sometimes I don’t want to watch an artsy movie that touches on the human condition. Maybe I just want to watch a giant robot fight a giant glowing monster, which is exactly what you get in this movie of the month: Pacific Rim.
My Review with Spoilers (It’s been nine years!)
3 out 5 Godzilla Attacks
I love this movie. But why do I love it as much as I do? Because if I’m honest, the plot is predictable, the acting is cheesy, the dialogue is even more cheesy, and the cast is a weird group you would never see outside of a mid-tier sci-fi film about giant robots and monsters. But I’ll get to all of that in a bit.
The Good (What I love)
There is a lizard part in my brain that loves giant mechs fighting giant monsters or kaiju. Maybe it’s the absolute indoctrination anyone my age got as a kid. We had Voltron, The Iron Giant, Mobile Suit Gundam, Code Geass, and most importantly, The Power Rangers. There are many more mechs shows that I am neglecting to mention, but these were the most influential for me.
So when this movie first came out, I was so hype, but I knew that there would be nothing interesting to the movie’s actual plot. Instead, it was a giant setup for us viewers to watch a hulking metallic nuclear-powered mecha beat the snot out of a glowing blue kaiju. And it gave me everything I wanted. It was perfect. And when I get that itch to watch one thing beat up another, Pacific Rim is one of five movies in rotation. (Maybe I’ll write an article on this for fun.)
The Bad (What I willfully ignore)
There is no plot to this movie. It sort of just happens in front of you. The only thing that makes any sense is when a giant robot fights a giant monster. Only then is there blissful ignorance in the chaos that this movie orchestrates. Pacific Rim makes James Cameron’s Avatar look like the most well-thought-out plot. And that’s saying a lot since Avatar is just eye candy marketed as a movie. I can’t wait to see the absolute dumpster fire Avatar 2 is. (But it sure will look pretty.)
Pacific Rim would be like if you asked a seven-year-old to describe a robot vs. monster movie. For example, “The robot has two pilots because it’s too much on the brain for one pilot.” Or “The monsters come from a portal at the bottom of the ocean, but it’s a one-way portal, so we can’t go into it.” And while I love this aspect of the movie, some take themselves (and the movies they watch) way too seriously and probably despise the plot. (Although, the fact that the world turns to crap in 2020 in Pacific Rim feels spot on.)
The acting and the dialogue are so incredibly cheesy that it’s almost heartwarming. It’s sort of like a cult classic. But, it’s so bad it’s good. You just need to buy into the story’s urgency, and the cheesiness starts to melt your heart like it was, well, cheese.
The cast in this movie is a top ten weird amalgamation of people I’ve ever seen in a movie. If someone asked me what Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Ron Perlman, and Charlie Day all had in common, the last thing I would think of would be a 2013 sci-fi movie. But what strikes me as weird is that I want to see them in another movie, a better movie, but they are all super fun to watch, and I think with a better script, that cast would have the potential to create something epic and funny.
The del Toro (I love this man)
Like I said earlier, I love this movie. Maybe it’s because I love Guillermo del Toro’s work. Almost everything he creates I enjoy. He has such an awesome imagination and creates some cool individual worlds, but I know he isn’t for everyone. But I will say this. His greatest creation is the Netflix show Trollhunters: Tales of Arcadia. There is something about that show that I just absolutely love. Yeah, it’s a kid’s show in the same way Avatar The Last Airbender and Toy Story are for kids. (And yes, I just compared Trollhunters to two masterpieces. Bite me.)
Best Movie or Worst Movie Ever? (IYKY)
Sorry, I’m getting sidetracked. Pacific Rim is not a great movie by most standards, but it’s a great dumb movie to watch when you want to turn your brain off or have something on while you clean the house or cook dinner. Plus, and I can’t stress this enough, giant robot mechas and giant glowing kaiju fight a bunch of times throughout this movie, and it is, for lack of a better word, EPIC.
And if you are a fan of sci-fi then five out Halo episode 1 review a read.