Let me talk exclusively to the guys in our readership for a moment. Yes, (believe it or not) there are a few females who are avid readers of our content and I know for a fact there are at least three, two of whom live in the same house that I do. I will tip my hat to MIDWEST JULIE who surfaces every now and again on the comments, but from there on it’s a total crap shoot. My own mother “claims” to be a MWTVG superfan, but she still refuses to wear the t-shirt I gave her. So what if it’s three sizes too large, that’s all we ordered!!
Anyway, so guys… and let me quickly make one more exception here–MIDWEST MIKE refuses to watch anything on film that is not historical war drama. So he’s out of this one too. But to EVERYONE ELSE, please listen to your friendly neighborhood MIDWEST MARK and go see PACIFIC RIM.
Why? I’ll tell you why. But first, let me give you three reasons why I can so flagrantly discuss a movie on this television blog of ours:
1. Why the hell not?
2. I’m the one typing here and you are pretty much a captive audience.
3. There is a surprisingly large amount of actors in the film that come from the television shows we all know and love.
See? It’s loosely related. So let’s get to it!
Big robots versus big aliens directed by GUILLERMO DEL TORO. There, I set up the plot for you. What more can you possibly want from a summer blockbuster?? It makes me laugh when film snobs sit down and nitpick a film like this saying that “there’s too much action” or “there’s not enough character development” or “the plot is flimsy”. People: It’s a big robot versus big alien movie. Every critique you have is entirely correct. But that’s exactly what makes the movie incredible in almost every way.
PACIFIC RIM is probably the most massive movie I have ever seen, both in size of the objects and the scope of destruction. Loving attention is paid to every single detail of every single frame of the film. Thank GUILLERMO DEL TORO for that one, it is certainly a sight to behold. He is an artist painting with masterful strokes for the entirety of the film. Not just the visuals but also the world created is highly entertaining with backstory and current story having an incredible amount of intricacy. Again, very DEL TORO-esque when you compare the fiction and mythology to his other ‘deep fantasy’ works such as PANS LABYRINTH and DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE DARK.
Now to elaborate on point 3 above: If you’re a fan of television, you will recognize a great number of these actors. CHARLIE HUNNAM is the main character in the film and is also known and loved (by anybody with good taste in TV) from SONS OF ANARCHY along with RON PEARLMAN who plays a black-market monster-part snake oil salesman. IDRIS ELBA (LUTHER), CHARLIE DAY (IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA), DIEGO KLATTENHOFF (HOMELAND), BURN GORMAN (TORCHWOOD, GAME OF THRONES) and ROBERT KAZINSKY (just introduced on TRUE BLOOD) round out the cast, amongst many others.
I will say that the acting leaves a bit to be desired overall. It’s not for lack of talent, as these are all quite talented actors. CHARLIE HUNNAM, for instance is fantastic in THE LEDGE if you have never seen it before just as IDRIS ELBA shines in PROMETHEUS. I think the real issue lies with the fact that literally nothing can compare with the spectacle of the action. The story here is pretty much necessary filler between action scenes.
There could have been a tad more attention paid to the relationship between CHARLIE HUNNAM and his female counterpart RINKO KIKUCHI as the film wasn’t entirely sure whether to focus on it or not. And there could have also been a tiny bit more on CHARLIE HUNNAM’S brother from the beginning to give a chance for the audience to emotionally attach to the characters. But the movie isn’t necessarily about the characters. It’s about the freakin’ robots. And the friggin’ monsters!!
Quick side note: CHARLIE DAY irritates the bejeezus out of me. Bro, you’re a dude. Why do you speak a whole octave above where you should? It’s funny for about eight and a half seconds, then I wanted you to get “accidentally” stepped on by a Kaiju.
This is one heck of a fun movie. I think GUILLERMO DEL TORO must have somehow invaded my memories of playing with my toys circa age 8, because what is seen on the screen is exactly what I imagined in my youth. Should GI Joe intermingle with the Transformers? Can my Lego “Space” sets dare invade my Lego “Castle” sets? How about my plastic dinosaurs, can they join in too? The answer to all questions is “hell yea” as long as Boba Fett can be along for the ride. If this is all a notion you can closely identify with, then PACIFIC RIM is the movie for you.
In a purely pragmatic sense, I really want this film to work. DEL TORO is simply awesome, and I would love him to get the mainstream recognition that he deserves. It would also legitimize bigger budget original ideas rather than Hollywood relying on sequel after prequel after reboot to actually make money. Yes, this is all partially fault of the moviegoing public, but hopefully a film like this can make its own meaningful impact.
Judging a movie like this requires one to understand what kind of a movie it is. The movie snobs of the world will not be satisfied with a film unless it lives up to some Shakespearean dramatic standard. Give me a break, folks… this is a monster versus robot movie. And that being said, for the quality of the visual spectacle alone it deserves a very strong “A”.