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The Good, The Bad & The Weird Of Guillermo Del Toro's 'Pacific Rim'

Features
by The Playlist Staff
July 15, 2013 2:13 PM
52 Comments
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Pacific Rim

This weekend, Guillermo del Toro's "Pacific Rim," a monster mash about giant creatures that come through an inter-dimensional portal on the ocean floor and the giant robots constructed to fight them, was neither an outright dud nor a smash. Beaten to number one by "Despicable Me 2," we can't imagine a third place finish was what Warner Bros. had in mind for their $200 million summer movie. Was it too much of a fan letter to nerds and comic book stores for the general public to care? Did the marketing campaign stumble? Did it need an A-list star? We're sure conference rooms at WB today are having meetings asking those exact same questions, but there's also the simple question of whether or not the movie actually delivered. 

While a certain segment embraced the approach that riffed on old-school Saturday matinee double-features, anime, manga and trumped-up videogames, others found those elements couldn't hit the derivative story, one-dimensional characters and a movie that offered a lot of hollow explosions and special effects (here's our original review). In fact at The Playlist, it has spurred its own numerous discussions in the lobby and we've carried it over to this feature in which we run down the good, the bad, and the just plain weird about "Pacific Rim" (and even some of these points were hotly debated within our ranks). Spoilers roughly the size and shape of a giant robot, follow.

Good Kaiju 

Pacific Rim
The Designs
Seeing as this is a Guillermo del Toro film, everything in "Pacific Rim" is meticulously detailed and gorgeously designed. The production design was handled by both Carol Spier, a longtime Cronenberg collaborator who has also worked with del Toro in the past, and Andrew Neskoromny, a veteran of influential sci-fi series "Star Trek: The Next Generation." The two work in concert with one another beautifully. The sets are almost universally stunning, though the borrowed "Blade Runner" look in the Tokyo slums is admittedly played out (let's call for moratorium there). From the bones of fallen kaiju to the lair of black market organ harvester Hannibal Chau (Ron Perlman), every location design is beautiful and fully realized. Then there are, of course, the robots and monsters, which del Toro personally oversaw with a small army of artists (the designs were brought to life by the magicians at Industrial Light & Magic). Each cuts an imposing silhouette, like the three-armed jaeger Crimson Typhoon or the "category 5" monster seen at the end of the movie, one that combines del Toro's love for "Godzilla"-esque man-in-suit designs with his clear fascination with all things Lovecraft. You get the impression, from the design work, that del Toro didn't set out to simply make a monsters versus robots movie, it set out to make the monsters versus robots movie.

Guillermo Del Toro
Feels Both Cutting Edge And Nostalgic
Rare is the movie that can make you feel like you're experiencing something you've never felt before while at the same time warming your heart in the way that only the nostalgia of something truly familiar can produce. That's the magic of "Pacific Rim." It's a nearly $200 million, cutting-edge spectacle that uses every high tech tool in the cinematic arsenal but can often times feel as wide-eyed and wondrous as sitting cross-legged on the living room carpet, watching Saturday morning cartoons. It's sense of striking awe is something few of the summertime juggernauts possess— they might be able to turn the destruction levels up to a deafening degree, but there's little in the way of real marvel. Del Toro, with his geeky obsessions and attention to detail, knows how to create this kind of response in the viewer. And it really does take someone like del Toro to produce such an honest and immersive effect, mostly because he's an actual nerd, instead of who is usually behind these movies—a committee of suits and creative cynically types trying to speculate what nerds want.

Pacific Rim
The World
Jaegers. Kaiju. The Drift. The Breach. The Shatter Dome. Hell, there's even tangential plot threads about the toxicity of kaiju blood, which is given the nickname "Kaiju blue." A lot of this stuff is deal breaker nonsense to normal civilians, but if you can hang with it, it's great world-building texture. These are all terms cooked up by del Toro and his co-screenwriter Travis Beacham, and they are all phrases that pop up, again and again, in "Pacific Rim." While it does act as marble-mouthed sci-fi gobbledegook to some (okay, many and non-nerds don't care about the different names of each Jaeger robot), if you can get past it, it actually serves to deepen and enhance the bizarro, perfectly calibrated "Pacific Rim" world. It's a testament to del Toro and Beacham, too, that you know exactly what each of these things is and that they can be spoken about with effortlessness within the movie. Rarely is a world this authentically established, where every facet of the science fiction concept is, if not examined deeply, then at least given a passing mention (including, of course, kaiju crap). You can tell that the filmmakers are in love with this universe, and if you are one of those who can suspend their disbelief, you can't help but be similarly entranced.

Pacific Rim

The Visual Effects
Simply put, the visual effects by Industrial Light & Magic, are unlike anything we've ever seen before. Yes, there have been both giant monsters and giant robots in major motion pictures before, and a lot of them have been brought to life by ILM. But the level of detail, complexity, and creativity on display in "Pacific Rim" is unparalleled. You can feel every reptilian scale, watch every gear move underneath the giant armor plates. What's even more is that most of these battles take place in insane atmospheric conditions—in snow, in rain, underwater (though it should be said, many have criticized those settings for obscuring the fight scenes, we'll get to that). All of that has to be visualized too and it's impressive to say the least. On a pure visual level, "Pacific Rim" is overwhelming and overstuffed, to the point that only on second or third viewings will you be able to pick up on all the little flourishes and embellishments. There's so much of it that it's easy to ignore or take for granted, but visual effects movies as lovingly crafted, with this much attention to detail, come around far too seldom. Most movies are interested in the most bang for your buck, while del Toro and his collaborators are interested in something more, a real sense of visual splendor and opulence.

Pacific Rim
Mako’s flashback
One of the major criticisms levied at "Pacific Rim" is the lack of characterization and background story as motivation. And while this is certainly true for some, the one character who receives due diligence in this realm is Rinko Kikuchi’s Mako Mori, a Japanese jaeger fighting expert whom Marshall Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) is determined to keep out of the pilot’s seat... err... elliptical machine. Her shaky mental state is hinted at (“vengeance”) but we don’t know exactly why he’s keeping her from taking the reins until the test run with Raleigh in Gipsy Danger.  During  her first neural drift, she ends up falling down the rabbit hole of her own memory of her encounter with a Kaiju as a young girl. The amount of drama and stakes contained within this one flashback is more than the entire film really manages to carry out. Mako, as a young girl, runs down her city street with a kaiju chewing concrete city blocks just behind her. She carries her red shoe, wailing uncontrollably, and darts down an alley where Raleigh, with her in her drift, implores her to come back mentally. In this state, she manages to fire up the jaeger’s cannon firing device, almost obliterating the crowd in the Shatter Dome, before Clifton Collins Jr.’s tech ops character pulls the (comically oversized) plug. This sequence is emotionally searing, beautifully shot and highly effective. It’s also teased earlier and revisited later to reveal more about her character and is a fine piece of emotional and revealing filmmaking, that doesn’t overdo it or skimp on the details, and it’s clearly the mark of del Toro within this massive mash-em-up. 

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52 Comments

  • IainG | November 9, 2013 6:57 PMReply

    Not seen anyone else comment on the obvious discrepancy in the age of the young Asian girl and her adult self. If the war has been going on for 6 or 7 years and the young girl seems to be 6 or 7 years old, wouldn't the older Asian girl then be 13 or 14 years old ...not mid twenties onward!!
    The film lost all credibility when I realised that.

  • Arsukfjorden | October 3, 2013 7:40 PMReply

    This movie just had too caveman-agression/american badass stuff in it and no logic at all. Here is SOME of the stuff that i kept wondering about throughout the movie:


    - Why would they use pure iron and no alloys? Pure iron is absolutely useless?

    - Why would they make on of the Jaegers analogue? Analogue has pretty much no benefits and do btw get affeted by that EMP pulse.

    - On of the jaegers had dieselengines? Seriously? Diesel? No way any current or future diesel engine could ever produce enough torque to move these robots at that speed. I dont care about how much better engines are in 20 years time. No way they are going to produce that much power.

    - No current material(alloy or not) could ever sustain as much force as these robots are put under when they fight and move quickly.

    - Modern helicopters(even the most powerfull ones) can only lift a few tons of weight. No way those 5-6 helikopters could ever lift those robots, which must weigh thousands of tones. It just wont happen.

    - The ship, which were used as a weapon, could never be picked up without breaking in half. The construction is designet to be in water or in a dry dock. It could never be picked up, without shatter to pieces. The construction just wont hold.

    -As the writter of the article above, i wonder in which way the mind brdige thing helps the pilots? The robots arms and legs is controlled by the pilots's limbs and and the ekstra gear is controlled by buttons. Only the plasma cannon has no obvious "button", but that can be the only reason for all the mind sharing stuff?

    - Why are they not controlling the Jeagers wirelessly? Seems like one of the biggest problems is that the pilots are getting batteret to death inside the Jeagers, so why not just control them wirelessly?
    And dont say that the neural connection probably would be too much for w wireless connection. All the mind control stuff can be translated to simple commands to move a leg forward and so on. It is obviously possible to do.

    - Why did the geeky professor guy(not the Kaiju loving one - the other one) need 10m2 of blackboards to create something which seemed very similar to a exponential mathematical function? Seriously, this is something that you learn at the age of 17 or something - Not something you need einstein to figure out...

    - A nuclear reactor does NOT explode like a nuclear bomb, just because it melts down. It melts and there will probably be a smaller explosion, but not a 1,2 megaton explosion. Just look at Chernobyl. It did melt down, but it didnt really explode like a nuclear bomb. So blowing up that gypsi Jaeger would never work.
    And to the guy who wrote the article above: blowing up any man made bomb(konventional, fission or fusion doesent matter) inside the core of the earth would have no impact at all. The forces inside the earth are so massive that it just wouldnt matter. But it is not the case anyway since this were an another dimension and (weird) stuff.



    Overall this movie were just too much for me. I am okay with badass action fun, but this were just stupid. It is very clear that whoever wrote, ceated, produced, instructed(and so on) never had any idea of how the real world function.

    It were fun, mainly because it were stupid... And great effects obviously. Thumps up for that.


    /A civilengineer student

  • voxnulla | October 2, 2013 6:23 PMReply

    Just stole the movie, watched it (while skimming over some parts that made my ears bleed) and smiled because I did not spend a dime on this trash.
    Flat, flaccid, devoid of any content, mindless action drivel for the attention span challenged. Utter US garbage.

  • Len | August 26, 2013 4:18 AMReply

    Decent review, but it FAILS in a couple of places.

    Namely, it's pretty dumb to imply or think that Del Toro was ripping off Sharknado in any way, shape, or form... given the relative production complexities involved, Pacific Rim probably entered production BEFORE Sharknado, and they both got released around the same time.

    Secondly, what's so hard to understand about The Breach? It's a DIMENSIONAL PORTAL, yo. The nuke didn't go of in 'the center of the Earth', and even if it did, the Earth is huge, and sees forces much more powerful than that on a regular basis (do you know how much energy was released when Krakatoa exploded? Mount St. Helens?).

    Put your thinking caps on tighter next time, a lot of this stuff isn't THAT hard to get.

  • dave | August 25, 2013 12:15 AMReply

    Keith's right this was a good movie. You're just bashing it because you're afraid of what people will say if you like a giant robot vs monster movie. That and you got so much of the plot wrong I wonder if you even saw it or if you read the wiki.

  • Keith | August 2, 2013 10:25 AMReply

    MONSTERS AND GIANT ROBOTS!!!

  • Christian | July 24, 2013 3:05 AMReply

    This is such a bad article, the only reason you found some of the faults you found was probably because you were too busy talking to your "seatmate".

    The whole sword thing? GD went through tons of changes during the 5 years, it's not outside the realm of belief that they decided to add swords this time around and they forgot to tell the protagonist about it but Mako oversaw the project which was why she activated the swords because she knew about them.

    They straight up tell you the breach goes to a different dimension and not "[the core of the earth]", I don't even know why'd you think that.

    The after credit scene. Think about it, Pacific Rim took waaaay longer to make than Sharknado, it's not like they just straight up copied them after seeing it and the scene was meant to be a joke, speaking of which.

    This article is a joke and grasping at so many straws. The valid points it does make (the Asian and Russian characters being done incorrectly, some of the fight scenes) are so clear that writing them down in an article is just telling people stuff they already knew without developing much on what's being said besides going " Yeah, you know that part? That part was stupid."

  • Jenny | July 23, 2013 4:04 PMReply

    I'll give you one explanation for the sword. Mako was the one who used the sword, a woman, the men just want to bash the monsters up and use their shiny guns. Mako is the only practical one. When in doubt, melee.

  • raf jordan | July 23, 2013 2:31 AMReply

    wow, could not disagree more with this article. and i'm not saying the film is perfect, far from it. but everything the author didn't like, i liked lol. i couldn't believe what i was reading

  • Clay | July 22, 2013 10:34 PMReply

    Wow, spot on. Best article I've read about a movie in a long time. I like PR but I wanted to love it.

  • Bob | July 22, 2013 7:01 PMReply

    I think what you are all forgetting is that this film is super fast-paced and fun. All that aside, I thought it explained most loop-holes quite well. As per the drone deal, well they stated in the beginning that it took 6 days to take down the first Kaiju and after it destroyed 3 cities, certainly the drones were no the best option. This was a great movie and obviously not meant to be a super dull one. It starts and takes you on an immense action-packed tour of the world for the duration. The action sequences, IMO were not that dull. My only problem is that I did not understand why they insisted on boxing with the monsters, rather than just stabbing them.... THey had a sword the entire time. If you watch the film you can point out about 8 instances where he could have just stabbed the fucking monsters.

  • berk | July 21, 2013 2:11 AMReply

    Why del Toro focused on Son of Anarchy Top Gunning against Aussie Iceman instead of Mako and Stringer Bell is beyond me. Mako's backstory and drive to become a pilot combined with Stringer's father figure with a secret was far more interesting than the two sets of bland white guys the movie focused on.

  • blip | July 19, 2013 5:51 AMReply

    As someone who loved the movie, I'm not exactly going to deliver an even-handed verdict on this article, but I thought that some of the 'bad' is incredibly harsh and nit-picky. A fair chunk of the characterisation is weak, but then Del Toro would have needed a film that spanned several extra hours to flesh out every character - I'm hoping that some of this makes it into a director's cut come home release. At any rate, Mako was a well-developed character whose motivations made sense. And it never felt like her story arc was there just to give the men purpose.

    Some of the accents are indeed shocking, but I didn't find them ever hard to understand. I also never had a problem with the fight scenes - everything seemed pretty crystal clear to me. I don't know if the complaints about fight scene visibility are coming from people who saw the film in 3D? But no problems here in 2 dimensions.

    Rule breaking? Didn't see much of that. Gipsy Danger has been revamped since it was first commissioned, hence why it can keep up in the final scenes. And it was made clear from the start that the better the neural connection (which is there to share the burden of supporting the device, not for communication), the better you fight. Mako and Raleigh have a stronger connection than Raleigh and his brother, so Gipsy Danger performs better. The sword... There's a good chance that, due to renovations to Gipsy, Raleigh didn't know about it. And it's understandable for Mako to forget about it during the stress of her first actual fight. Further, pilots probably don't use the evacuation pods too often as they'd be a sitting duck for the Kaiju. It was shown earlier that Kaiju will take an interest in small boats - they exist to wipe everything out - so why would you not stay in the Jaegers to fight until the bitter end? Better chance for survival, I'd say.

    Poking holes in the mid-credit scene? Really?! It was a throwaway joke for those who sat through the credits! Really not cool.

  • Lkon | July 17, 2013 5:18 PMReply

    And don't forget to label under the "bad": the film's women - or rather woman - and its misogyny. Of COURSE this geek's wet dream had to have a "spunky" and "bad-ass" yet constantly submissive, bowing Japanese waif with martial arts skills who is basically the first to crumble and the only one to cry and act like a teenager (Slamming a door in frustration even! Talk about infantilization and offensive stereotyping). She's the ONLY woman vaguely visible in this picture besides the "Russian" extra, and thus the only one who is of any importance to the plot. Talk about the Smurfette Syndrome in action. She is only begrudgingly given a chance to be a hero because of course she's also the love interest (what else are women good for, besides eye candy and hinting at romance to drum up the interest of the paying ladyfolk?) and labeled as "strong" when compared to the other "heroes" else in the flick, she is portrayed as if she isn't. I'm sorry but even her background info that supposedly fleshes her out as a character deserved to make a damsel-in-distress and crybaby out of her. Do you think they'd ever done that to Hunnam's character? Of course not. Mako having lost her brother/sister years ago and being brought out of retirement instead of Hunnam would've added as much, if not more depth to her character without resorting to age-old misogynist and racist tactics and tropes. Women are already invisible enough in movies as it is, let alone women whose characters are approached just as human beings, not just owners of boobs and a straight man's fantasy.

  • Raimei | July 23, 2013 7:50 AM

    As a feminist myself, who is a Japanese major and has lived there for 6 months, I actually completely disagree. It's as Mako says herself, "it's not obedience- it's respect". The importance of respect to any Japanese individual cannot be understated, and the fact that she herself makes that distinction only to be ignored is more upsetting. She is NOT sexualised and she is most decidedly NOT the love interest. I've watched the film twice, and having a hollywood film that doesn't end with a kiss, or some contrived form of oh-no-he-can't-breathe-better-give-him-CPR, is amazing and so exceedingly refreshing. Sure, all the female Jaeger pilots have dumb boob armour - but there are no lingering, fanservice shots of any of them. I think I recall a more lingering shot on the Marshall's bum when he was first introduced in the suit than on either of the two women. Secondly, there is room for organs and breathing in their armour! This is a big step! It's sad that it's a big step, but if you look at Mako's armour after the Marshall suits up, where she is breathing heavily out of concern, you can see that the stomach of her suit is a little pot-bellied, as are all of the suits, showing breathing and not trying to highlight her littler stature or waist/hip ratio.

    Initially I did have the same response as you to her flashback scenes. But any child would have been terrified in those circumstances, and I personally found the flashbacks highlighted the difference between her childlike self and the power she could now command as a Jaeger pilot.

    Secondarily, I agree with the writer of the article in that it would have been nice to flesh out the Russians more - but if you watch their interactions, only Anna (sp?), not Sascha, has any lines. That to me points to lack of ability to flesh out all side characters, than deliberately trying to sideline women - and when you think about it from a wider perspective, the film has gone to all this effort to set up Jaeger pilots as the best of the best, as rockstars - and then goes on to point out that of the remaining four Jaeger teams, TWO of those teams have women in that role, accepted in that exalted role as capable and as among the last standing. Like the writer of the article, I am looking forward to seeing if there is a director's cut with more detail on the side characters.

  • Katie Walsh | July 18, 2013 2:31 AM

    Great points all around, and as a feminist, I am kicking myself for not bringing this up!!

  • Lkon | July 17, 2013 5:21 PM

    *elsewhere in this flick
    *served more to make a damsel-in-distress

    Damn typos.

  • schoolboy | July 17, 2013 4:46 PMReply

    And fanboys go to see every movie that comes out, (and like most of them), so it's not like the sci-fi nerds are going to save movies like these by themselves. The general public are TIRED of these cookie-cutter action movies. This is why Spielberg says that the business is in trouble.

  • clamsy | July 17, 2013 4:43 PMReply

    Another clumsy attempt at saving a failing blockbuster comic book movie. "Yeah, it sucks, but go ahead and spend youre 12 bucks on it, anyway." It's not like movies are SUPPOSED to be good or anything...

  • jski | July 17, 2013 2:12 AMReply

    Couldn't agree more with this list. This movie is awe inspiringly realized, but you cringe/laugh every time someone speaks and the plot is advanced. If you go into this movie just to do some sight-seeing, you'll be more than satisfied.

  • sanman | July 16, 2013 7:37 PMReply

    Kevin Jagernauth - seriously? Looks like you've got your own naming book from Pacific Rift.

  • JimHarbor | July 16, 2013 6:04 PMReply

    I find it odd that you can be reviewing the film when it's clear you didn’t understand so much of it.

    I have an infinite respect journalist (maybe be a bit too much) so when I tell you I find it odd that you didn’t grasp things I did, I don’t mean it to gloat but out of general shock.

    I mean you seem to think the Kaiju Makers live in the center of the Earth when not only does the opening narration explain it’s a portal to another dimension, but the term "other universe" is used all the time. They aren't inside the planet; it's another dimension entirely.

    That said I do agree the fights were bit off (the undersea battle was anti-climactic compared to the Hong Kong fight).

    Though I wonder why you didn’t point out the quirky narrative flow. Very odd, with one little act and one big act, instead of a proper narrative curve.

  • agooga | July 16, 2013 3:11 PMReply

    I get the fun in snarking out at a movie like Pacific Rim-- I shredded Prometheus for days after I saw it in similar fashion. The difference is that PacRim was fun as hell and that's all it was intended to be. It's a movie for 10 year olds and/or people with a still-extant inner child. I believe this film is destined to be a minor or full-fledged classic in the sci-fi / action genre. If I am right, it stands in good company with a lot of classics that have believability gaps big enough to drive a boat-sword through. A planet-killing battlestation? Using body-heat to power a computer simulated world? Mind melds? A golden box that melts people's heads? Stupidity! Insanity! Who were the morons that conceived of such nonsense!

  • agooga | July 16, 2013 3:10 PMReply

    I get the fun in snarking out at a movie like Pacific Rim-- I shredded Prometheus for days after I saw it in similar fashion. The difference is that PacRim was fun as hell and that's all it was intended to be. It's a movie for 10 year olds and/or people with a still-extant inner child. I believe this film is destined to be a minor or full-fledged classic in the sci-fi / action genre. If I am right, it stands in good company with a lot of classics that have believability gaps big enough to drive a boat-sword through. A planet-killing battlestation? Using body-heat to power a computer simulated world? Mind melds? A golden box that melts people's heads? Stupidity! Insanity! Who were the morons that conceived of such nonsense!

  • agooga | July 16, 2013 3:10 PMReply

    I get the fun in snarking out at a movie like Pacific Rim-- I shredded Prometheus for days after I saw it in similar fashion. The difference is that PacRim was fun as hell and that's all it was intended to be. It's a movie for 10 year olds and/or people with a still-extant inner child. I believe this film is destined to be a minor or full-fledged classic in the sci-fi / action genre. If I am right, it stands in good company with a lot of classics that have believability gaps big enough to drive a boat-sword through. A planet-killing battlestation? Using body-heat to power a computer simulated world? Mind melds? A golden box that melts people's heads? Stupidity! Insanity! Who were the morons that conceived of such nonsense!

  • agooga | July 16, 2013 3:10 PMReply

    I get the fun in snarking out at a movie like Pacific Rim-- I shredded Prometheus for days after I saw it in similar fashion. The difference is that PacRim was fun as hell and that's all it was intended to be. It's a movie for 10 year olds and/or people with a still-extant inner child. I believe this film is destined to be a minor or full-fledged classic in the sci-fi / action genre. If I am right, it stands in good company with a lot of classics that have believability gaps big enough to drive a boat-sword through. A planet-killing battlestation? Using body-heat to power a computer simulated world? Mind melds? A golden box that melts people's heads? Stupidity! Insanity! Who were the morons that conceived of such nonsense!

  • agooga | July 16, 2013 3:15 PM

    And so sorry about the multiple posts! Your website doesn't give feedback that the comment was submitted, so I hit the submit button several times before reloading the page to check!

  • kitcon | July 16, 2013 12:33 PMReply

    Amen. amen.
    Thought pretty much the same things. Seeing the jaegers sucker punch a monster had me thinking -- "Really? Voltes V could have done better 20 years ago." And they didn't need neural bridges.

  • Brian | July 16, 2013 11:05 AMReply

    RE: the "multiple ethnicities" remarks about other movies being about one race saving the world.
    I should remind you that in the overwhelming majority of Japanese kaiju movies, it's always the Japanese saving the world without any help from anyone else. Nick Adams in MONSTER ZERO (1965) was a rare and notable exception. In fact, GODZILLA VS. KING GHIDORAH (1992) was probably closer to Japan's true feelings. In it, the Americans and Russians were the bad guys who manipulate the monsters through time travel to destroy Japan in the 1990s to subvert Japan's "economic miracle." (I would argue that Japan didn't need any help busting its own economic bubble not long afterwards.)

  • C2F | July 16, 2013 12:56 AMReply

    Conventional weapons take too long to kill a Kaiju.

    It took the military 6 days to kill the first Kaiju and they still had to nuke it- Not exactly something you want to do to your cities on a regular basis.

  • daveharnett | July 18, 2013 8:39 PM

    It's a film about mechas and as you say, they have given a hand-wavey justification for the existance of mechas. Fair enough, that's fine.

    It is fun and easy to pick at it though. Here are some things you could do instead of using all the metal in the world on mechas:
    - Build a few more of those helicopters and use them to pick up the cities in danger.
    - Build lots of air-launched nuclear torpedoes for use near the rift.
    - Build a big cage and drop it on top of the rift.
    - Discourage pilots from flying into their targets (In a Japanese-inspired film, does this qualify as a stereotype?).

  • KF | July 15, 2013 8:12 PMReply

    "Maybe every other sentence out of their mouths is intelligible, and because they’re either talking about kaiju math or Vulcan mind-melding with a seafaring alien dinosaur at a high pitched, panicky squeal, it only complicates matters. As our seatmate said, “that might as well have been in French.” "

    Were they real that difficult to understand? I don't know, seemed like basic technobabble to me, very easy to follow, very easy to extract the necessary plot info from what they said when they said it.

  • IZ | July 23, 2013 7:54 AM

    With you here. I found them fine.

  • wilco | July 15, 2013 7:20 PMReply

    Guillermo Del Toro has talent , but he is always inconsistent. Pan's Labyrinth is his only film that was great from beginning to end.

  • ronnie | July 15, 2013 5:29 PMReply

    im worried that youre confused about the dimensional portal. one opening is on earth, and that gateway seems to take you to another universe, not the center of the earth.

    i liked the characters. the characters in del toro's other movies are always way too melodramatic. but they worked here. charlie day was the least annoying ive ever seen him.

    yeah, it would have been cool if one fight scene didnt take place at night in pissing rain.

    so it lost to grown ups 2, but isnt it doing really well over seas?

    i liked pacific rim way better than man of steel. but there were both flawed films.

  • PPPPPP | July 15, 2013 5:09 PMReply

    It was fun. Extraordinarily stupid, but fun. 3/5

  • RaikNaSeem | July 15, 2013 5:01 PMReply

    If the "portal" was always I'm the same spot, why do they have to wait for the kaiju to hit a city?

    BAD STORY TELLING.

  • daveharnett | July 18, 2013 8:06 PM

    It's hard to punch things underwater, so the jagers wouldn't work very well. Also, there isn't so much stuff to blow up/knock down at the bottom of the pacific.

  • rov124 | July 16, 2013 3:30 AM

    Did you see the movie? They said it was attacked but with nuclear bombs but nothing happened, until Charlie Day character discovered after linking with the Kaiju brain that Kaiju DNA was needed to break through the portal.

  • welles80 | July 15, 2013 4:08 PMReply

    Pretty sure Hunnam’s character wasn’t presented as bad boy more unorthodox in his execution and surprising with the fight moves and such. It would not have made sense for him to be the rebellious dick most Hollywood type’s play as it would not have worked with the technology or philosophy that the film presents of a world coming together as one to fight a common enemy.

    I thought the fights were incredibly easy to follows unlike the much favoured fast editing and cutting of recent summer blockbusters. I also enjoyed Day and Burn Gorman even if they didn’t completely work they were a nice light aside from all the EPIC destruction. I can see where you’re coming from with your other criticisms but I don’t agree with them 100% it seems like nit-picking. I wanted a gorgeous looking film with giant robots smashing giant monsters, Pacific Rim did the job. The biggest disappointment is the current US Box Office Top Ten…Grown Ups 2…(yes I am being a snob).

  • Sean | July 15, 2013 3:45 PMReply

    I went in for giant monsters vs giant robots, came out with that and the happiness that someone finally made a live action blockbuster that feels like a throwback to old school Gojira and Japanese anime.
    I didn't expect levels of backstory nor did I want it in this case.

  • Sean | July 15, 2013 3:45 PMReply

    I went in for giant monsters vs giant robots, came out with that and the happiness that someone finally made a live action blockbuster that feels like a throwback to old school Gojira and Japanese anime.
    I didn't expect levels of backstory nor did I want it in this case.

  • loudrockmusic | July 15, 2013 3:15 PMReply

    Jeez. Can't we just enjoy something for a change? I liked it and had fun with my homegirls watching it. They loved it, even though they, admittedly, only went to see Charlie Hunnam take his shirt off.

  • KG | July 15, 2013 2:45 PMReply

    I can agree with your bad and weird, except I never found the fight scenes hard to follow. It all seemed pretty straight-forward to me.

  • Josh | July 15, 2013 2:34 PMReply

    I don't get why they could use their escape pods to go through the breach, I thought they needed the DNA? Tactically the movie makes no sense but I had a lot of fun. That middle fight was epic. Give Del Torro the transformers franchise!

  • JAN | October 5, 2013 3:04 PM

    I think, that's because Slattern's corpse still around the portal area.. which has made the gate won't close.. (Gipsy Danger left him floating around the gate)
    (In this case: Slattern's body = wedge door stop)
    But as the nuke destroying the portal area.. but not the entire Anteverse.. certainly the Kaijus are coming back to have a vengeance (the sequel maybe ^^)

  • Charle | July 21, 2013 1:20 PM

    You need the DNA to get through the earth side

  • cory everett | July 15, 2013 2:42 PM

    I wondered about this too but thought maybe the barcode DNA thing only matters coming in (since if that works you wouldn't need to gate it going the other way too)?

  • Gus | July 15, 2013 2:26 PMReply

    What about the cinematography and the sequence of little Mako?

  • Kevin | July 15, 2013 3:00 PM

    Sorry, we made an editorial call at the time to cut it, but we'll put it back in shortly.

  • Katie Walsh | July 15, 2013 2:43 PM

    Well, I wrote it, but I'm not sure why it wasn't included, except maybe that it might have been sacrificed for other things. Agreed it was the best part of the film and that little girl was amazing.

  • Yss | July 15, 2013 2:36 PM

    Mako's flashback was like an excellent shortfilm inside Pacific Rim, that girl delivered the film's best performance.

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