Pacific Rim Review

Pacific Rim

Now, I know what you’re thinking about Pacific Rim.

A story about giant robots fighting giant monsters from another planet couldn’t possibly be any good.

And you’d be right.

The year is 2013 ish, and the time is the end of days.

At least, it is for humanity and maybe even earth.

You see, these giant, sky scraper sized intergalactic monsters have found a way to bend space and time so they can pop up in the middle of the Pacific through some inter-dimensional portal in the earth’s tectonic plates.

Or some such nonsense, I’ll let someone much dumber than me waste their time trying to find any logic in this.

And, obviously, said alien monsters have travelled all this way for a fight.

So far, so predictable.

Of course, earth’s current armed forces can’t repel firepower of such magnitude.

What they really need is to build some giant robots to go into battle with these mardy alien creatures.

So they do.

Naturally, we still need a human element to pilot and control said robots, and it turns out this isn’t a one man job.

So enter the brotherly team of Yancy and Raleigh Bracket who, as the opening exposition so deftly points out, were never much cop as pilots.

But just like any self respecting american shaped hero in Hollywood, they sure know how to get into a brawl.

Now comes some more bullshit science, as these two pilots have to connect their minds in order to control their robot, before both act out their favourite power ranger moves inside their giant machines to make it do stuff.

Naturally, these good ol’ boys from the US of brain-dead become the best in their business and, along with some other human robot combinations around the world, lead the fight back against earth’s new alien foe.

But then the aliens fight back, by sending bigger and stronger aliens in to bat for them and batter us humans.

Will the brothers dim find a way to repel said alien forces now the odds are stacked against them?

Will something happen to make this particular mission personal for one of the brothers?

Will Pacific Rim drift into parodying top gun with its god awful script and improbably worse acting?

What do you think?

Now I love Guillermo del Toro, as most anyone who’s ever seen Pan’s Labyrinth and Hellboy would.

So when I heard his new film, Pacific Rim, was basically a cross between Godzilla, Transformers and that classic Neo Geo game King Of Monsters, I held off from being too cynical.

Even though the film’s trailers said otherwise, I was confident del Toro would weld a compelling story to the pyrotechnic nonsense that was exploding all around him.

I could not have been more wrong.

It’s not that Pacific Rim’s story is that bad, it simply doesn’t have one.

At all.

In its place, we’ve got pretty much every movie cliché you never wished to see, unthrillingly interspersed with some admittedly amazing action scenes that Pacific Rim is all about.

Well, big action scenes don’t mean a thing unless there’s a believable story and some well-crafted characters to go with this.

And there isn’t.

I simply don’t get why Hollywood continue to churn out these nonsensical movies with hundred million dollar budgets, whilst refusing to invest a dollar fifty in the script.

Unsurprisingly, the acting in Pacific Rim is horrific, as we suffer through Charlie Hunnam’s truly abysmal portrayal of Raleigh Bracket run the gamut of every macho movie cliché you could possibly think of.

Don’t worry though Charlie, as every single actor in this film does their level best to outdo his spectacularly wretched, belt holding embarrassment with their own equally insipid performances.

There are two notable exceptions to this, the booming alpha male presence of Idris Elba who simply commands attention as commanding officer Stacker Pentecost, and the atypical magnetism of Hellboy himself, Ron Pearlman, who lights up the screen in a gold plated cameo.

Of course, these two behemoths also cast an unforgiving shadow over the rest of Pacific Rim’s wholly inadequate cast.

Hell, the giant robots are less stiff and more believable than these actors.

But it’s still better than Man Of Steel.

Jonathan Campbell

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Dates ‘n stuff

July 2013