Guillermo del Toro’s robots vs. monsters movie Pacific Rim is now playing just about everywhere. The writing is superfluous and the characters thin, but at least when the audience laughs it’s with the film and not at it.
My review is at Short Ends & Leader:
In the case of Pacific Rim, what del Toro wanted to do was create a scenario in which giant robots get to slug it out with monsters. In the ocean. With swords and plasma cannons. The setup is handled somewhat clumsily at the start by a narration that continually emphasizes the “we” of humanity (the film is a throwback to the old style of kaiju and disaster films, where people put national differences aside and work together). Long, scaly, Cloverfield-type beasts are crawling out of a hellish interdimensional gash on the ocean floor and laying waste to coastal cities around the Pacific Rim. They’re actually called kaiju, in case you didn’t get what del Toro was going for.
To fight back, huge Robotech-styled vehicles called Jaegers (German for hunter or fighter) were built. The Jaegers are directed by two pilots who sit inside the giant head, stuck in a mind-meld virtual reality that’s made that much more effective when the two have some emotional connection. The film’s putative hero, Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam, a study in blankness), loses his co-pilot and brother in the opening battle scenes, and only reluctantly returns to fight at humanity’s last stand in Hong Kong…
Check out the trailer: