Pacific Rim (2013)

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Pacific Rim (2013)Starring Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Charlie Day, Ron Perlman, Rinko Kikuchi, Max Martini, Rob Kazinsky, Clifton Collins, Jr., Diego Klattenhoff

Directed by Guillermo del Toro

Growing up in the Seventies, my first introduction to true movie magic came from watching Godzilla flicks with my mom. Yes, Night of the Living Dead put me on the road to loving horror by age 3 and Frankenstein further cemented that love, but here were gigantic monsters fighting across cities. Creatures of myth. Beasts of endless scope. Never before had I witnessed such a thing. I will always remember sitting in front of our old black and white console TV filled with absolute wonder and in a state of rarely attained unbridled, untainted joy, my imagination running a mile a minute.

No matter how old I get, watching these movies over and over again can be summed up in one word for me: home. For a couple of hours the world and all of its problems fall by the wayside and I’m free to just enjoy the illusions in front of me. Revel in them. Here we are decades later, and with a full heart I can honestly say that after seeing Pacific Rim, that ever elusive magic was brought back to me like an old friend I haven’t seen since I was a little kid.

Pacific Rim wastes no time and starts off right away with a giant creature attack, a montage if you will that brings us immediately up-to-speed with prior events. We learn that to combat the monsters – or Kaiju as they are lovingly referred to here – our planet’s nations created giant robots called Jaegers to fend off these bestial and brutal menaces. Along the way the war against these monstrous behemoths takes an unexpected turn as they begin to adapt to our technology and weaponry. Several years later there are only a handful of Jaegers left, and world leaders are pulling the plug on the Jaeger program to try a different method of keeping the shores safe. Of course said method ends up being only mildly effective, and it’s not long before the commander of the program, Stacker Pentecost (played with an appropriate amount of badass vigor by the always great Idris Elba), gathers his troops, which include a has-been, a rookie, a trio of brothers, a father and son team, and more, to suit up to bring the fight to the Kaiju. Story-wise that’s all the detail I’m getting into here as I wouldn’t dream of spoiling a single second of this wondrous flick for you.

If there’s one thing I can tell you beyond a shadow of a doubt it’s that Guillermo del Toro is a kindred spirit to all fans with a love for monster movies. The amount of detail and love he puts up on the screen is downright overwhelming. This is a celebration of the Kaiju sub-genre which began with Godzilla. A veritable love letter to people who taught us to dream like Ray Harryhausen and the iconic Ishir├┤ Honda. Everything you could want to see is up there on the screen: likable characters who display a great deal of emotion and heart played by actors who are all-in; a stellar, action-packed, and witty script; and of course giant robots and monsters locked in a state of mortal combat the likes of which you’ve seldom seen. Even better, around 85% of what you witnessed in the many trailers , clips, and TV spots takes place at the beginning of the film. After the opening you have nearly two full hours left of unseen beauty and chaos to behold. And speaking of beholding… YOU SEE EVERYTHING! There is no shakey-cam. There is no confusing and erratic editing. The goods are all up there on the screen. Every bit of them. You are ringside for every smashed building, every mighty blow, and every jaw-dropping set piece. The scale of the action is just off the charts.

Even cooler? This is a movie for everyone. Bring your kids! Yes, things can be a bit scary, especially for the really young children out there, but if they’re around nine and up, this is most likely the best cinematic gift you can give to them this year. A shared experience of a lifetime. There’s no foul language and no real gore to speak of. Just amazing characters who are destined to become classics and win a well-deserved place in hearts of all ages for many years to come.

There was a part of me who believed that once you trade magic for fact, as we often do on the way to adulthood, there are no tradebacks. I’ve never been more happy to be wrong. Pacific Rim is an awesome good time that will leave you cheering. It’s one of the few perfect summer films in existence. See it on the big screen. Yes, even pay the extra for 3D. Bask in its fun and glory. Don’t hesitate for a single second. This is easily one of the single best experiences I’ve had in a theatre in my entire life. No hyperbole. Thank you, Guillermo. This is a gift that fans like myself will always cherish. Prepare to be blown away, guys. Pacific Rim is that damned good and that damned entertaining!

5 out of 5

Discuss Pacific Rim in the comments section below!

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Steve Barton

You're such an inspiration for the ways that I will never, ever choose to be.


    Just a follow up I finally revisited this the other day and have to admit it grew on me a little . It definately had more monster action than the new Godzilla but still had it’s shortcomings. My 4 yr old girl was actually enjoying it so it was a bonding moment for me. I hope the follow up builds on its positives and delivers a better package.

  • LifeMi

    Disappointed with the first 30-40 minutes; I just couldn’t connect with the movie. But I’m willing to bet that had more to do with expectations, as I presumed the movie was about the start of the Jaeger-Kaiju war, so the montage and timeline really threw me off at first. But I LOVED everything else, especially the Raleigh-Mako relationship, and CANNOT wait to see it again; hoping a second viewing and re-set expectations will make that first 30-40 minutes much more enjoyable.


    Are you kidding me? Grown Ups 2 beat out Pacific Rim at box office what a sick world we live in SHEEP!!! I found nothing funny in lame trailer to that trash with a 7% on Rotten Tomatoes I can only hope it plummets in its 2nd week.

    • evile420

      7%? rotten tomatoes as it at 72% from critics and 87% from audience members…


      • addeisdead

        He obviously meant that Grown Ups 2 had a 7%, not Pacific Rim.

        • GODFLESH69

          yeah thought that was obvious, PACIFIC RIM may not have been a masterpice but to be topped at box office by that retarded shit sickens me to the core!!!

  • conundrum


    No, really, I love this fucking movie, cannot wait to see it again. My expectations were way to high for this movie to not disappoint. But, much like “Avengers,” it delivered in spades. I went in to see giant robots fight giant monsters, and it delivered the absolute pinnacle of that kind of action. I have never seen humongous beasts wailing on each other on such a grand amazing scale as was delivered in this movie.

    As far as the plot and acting, it wasn’t spectacular, no. But there was clearly thought and time that went into this. Nothing felt like a second thought to me. Characters got enough development to let you get a feel for who they are, their motivations, their dreams. It, unlike most big budget action movies, hit the prerequisite benchmarks for developing plot and characters, then thoroughly knocked it out of the park with the action. Yet another prime example to point out to people who think that dumb is fine as long as there’s action. Action is better if you try to put at least a bit of intelligence behind it.

    • nazo

      The characters weren’t dumb, they were simple. Nobody had more than one or two character traits, but everything they did made sense within that context, and the plot advanced thanks to the characters intelligence (unlike, say, Prometheus).

  • Mr. Gray

    I don’t think I’ve had this much fun at a movie in 10-15 years, at least.

    It’s absolutely worth seeing in IMAX 3D, which I can’t believe I’m recommending, as I usually hate both of those things. But it really helps with the vastness of scale.

  • nazo

    I absolutely loved Pacific Rim. There was a palpable joy to the whole thing (and obvious love for the genre) that sold me on the ridiculous characters and story, and the kaiju/jaeger fights were everything I’ve ever wanted to see in theaters. Like other people have said, I felt like a giddy ten year old watching the movie, especially that Hong Kong battle. If you don’t buy into the atmosphere, I can see why you wouldn’t like it, but for me it was nearly perfect.

  • James Coker

    you can always count on kiddcapone to never really like anything LOL

    I on the other hand (like almost everyone else) fucking loved Pacific Rim and had a blast with it

    • kiddcapone

      What can I say, I’m a miserable old fuck…I guess when you’ve reached a certain age, you’ve seen everything done and expect better or something really different to be 100% impressed.

  • kiddcapone

    I guess this guy is too far gone. Pacific Rim was alright, not even close to being great. I thought the 3D was a waste of extra money. The story was EXTREMELY predictable. I wasn’t just one step ahead, I was 5 steps ahead from start to finish. It felt like 2 hours of deja vu.

    A good 35 minutes could have been cut out and it would have lost nothing. I enjoyed some of the characters, but they all acted like comic book characters spewing out the most lame eye-rolling dialogue. It could have been written by the White House Down gang. They can turn the movie into a nifty drinking game. Every time they say Mind Meld or make a reference to it, DRINK! You’ll be drunk and passed out before the ending you see coming from 2 galaxies away.

    I feel the same way about Pacific Rim as I did after the Transformer movies. I saw a bunch of robots, monsters, and shit blowing up. The End.

    Pacific Rim 2/5.

    • ramhouse3

      I felt exactly the same way. This film is waaaay over rated. Will not be seeing it again and the recommendation to take my kids could only have been because it was made for a Child’s brain. Boring Transformers Vs Godzilla (vomit). Why didn’t they just build very large rockets and fire them at them from a distance? Because you can’t sell toys that way. Going to watch Atlantic Rim now as at least that knew it was going to be rubbish.

  • Rottenjesus

    This was the movie I was most excited about and it didn’t let me down. Absolutely loved this from start to finish and I can’t wait to see it again!

    PACIFIC RIM is so full of giant monster love and energetic fun you can’t help but lose yourself in it.

    So yeah I want to marry this movie and have dirty no-no sex with it.

  • MonsterMash

    Amazing stuff. I loved it. Every minute was monster-mashing fun.

  • Sirand

    Creepy is 100% on the money. This film is fantastic! I honestly haven’t felt this sense of fun and excitement from a big summer spectacle since Jurassic Park!

    After enduring garbage like Transformers, Godzilla ’98 and all the other crap they try to pass off as entertainment these days, watching Pacific Rim is like one giant catharsis.

    Anyone who doesn’t have a blast with this film is too far gone.

    • Uncle Creepy

      Thank you, sir!


    couldn’t have been more amped to see this now i might just skip work on opening day gotta change my shorts after seeing this review i grew up watching Ultraman & godzilla flicks i will be like a kid again watching this!!!

    • GODFLESH69

      caught it yesterday while it was a visual feast i have seen the same cliche telegraphed plot devices play out so many times before so I kind of knew how it would play out . It’s like your girl getting a makeover sure she looks better but she’s still the same . Dont get me wrong I love this shit but it just needed something other then great effects to make it a true classic for me .I still find the monsters from Godzillas Destoy all Monsters (1968) more interesting than the Kaiju in this,there just wasn’t enough variety and in the rainy dark of the ocean was hard to see them . I still had a good time with it but hoped for more just my take go get your own opinion definately worth checking out regardless of any downsides I found still came out with a grin this opens the door for more giant monster movies bring on GODZILLA!!!

  • Rottenjesus

    Tomorrow night! So amazingly stoked for this!

  • frank_dracman

    While it’s always fun to see Creepy giddy about a movie ( I can picture the handsome, bald bastard jumping in his seat like a sugared up prepubescent) I’m still not quite sold. He talked me into seeing a matinee and I really, really hope it’s good, but it looks so damn goofy. Del Toro has yet to steer me wrong so I have a little faith.

  • Chernobyl Kinsman

    Going to see it in 5 days, thanks to it releasing on the 12th and the 12th weekend sucking major arse here =(

    I’ve waiting this long, what’s another 5 days, but still I’m almost vibrating with excitement.

  • ChaosWeaver

    I’ve yet to see this – I have my tickets bought and ready to go Friday right after work – but everything I’ve read, I know I will love this fuckin’ film. I’ve been waiting since the day this was announced for this. and given some crazy shit going on, I absolutely NEED this movie, now more than ever.

    To take a quote from the Buz – Did I take a call in my sleep, and tell someone my dream movie?

  • Screamz

    Completely agree. An amazing film. A perfect gift for anyone who loves monsters, especially if they’re the large, city-destroying type. The image I got from the film was del Toro lying on the floor playing with plastic monsters, then someone gave him a huge budget and said, “Do that.”

    I will plead everyone go see this. We can’t let Adam Sandler win at the box-office this weekend. Plus, I’d really like to see a sequel…

    • Gus Bjork

      Definitely going this weekend, to the biggest screen in the metro I can find. And I agree about the Sandler flick. Let’s unite and bury that fucker.

  • Scar Trek

    Really looking forward to this. I avoided the trailers, as I try to for most movies nowadays, but if it’s almost all from the start of the movie I can safely watch! I’m also reminded my friend has still failed his promise of 3 years ago to do a single-sitting Godzilla marathon. If I recall correctly, it’s around 60 straight hours of giant mutant lizards smashing down buildings. He swore he’d do it one day, and I intend to hold him to it.

    Also, “the always great Idris Elba?” Close, but I’m afraid I do have to remind you of his accent in Prometheus.

  • aliensharkboy

    Uncle Creepy reviewing this was a wise choice; well done with the review.
    I’ve been excited to see this since the first trailers. I had some doubts after a while, but I’m yet again pretty pumped for this movie!

    • aliensharkboy

      I can now speak as someone who’s seen this. With Godzilla films taking spots on my “top 10 of all time” lists, there’s no doubt I agree with UC on this. That Hong Kong battle was mind blowing!

  • Uncle Creepy

    Seriously… watching this movie was like waking up on Christmas morning at five years old and finding out that someone had bought you a pony,

    • un_DOA

      After watching “This is The End” (very funny & raunchy, btw), I went to watch this film, and it was a blast! So many people left during the closing credits, and they missed the funniest part of the film. When I told them what they missed, they were so pissed off at themselves… LOL! Someone should tell Michael Bay that this is how to make an action packed film. This movie was so much better than the Transformers movies.

      Your review was spot-on!

  • frank_dracman

    Very disappointed the other Jaegers didn’t get more screen time. I feel like they could have done away with some of the filler in the middle and put the others in the spotlight. Other than that and a couple minor quibbles (needs more Pearlman) I’d give it a 4, and this is coming from someone who didn’t really dig big monster movies.

    • GODFLESH69

      Completely agree it was a wasted opportunity to make something truly classic I found the Kaiju to be too similiar and overall designs unremarkable, full of underdeveloped characters & bad filler with cheesy dialog and a telegraphed screenplay that was very predictable. The fight scenes were not as Epic as I imagened they would have been. I still recommend seeing on big screen for the great visuals i’m a sucker for good FX and that was worth a matinee for me just not the classic I was hoping for hope they ramp things up for the inevitable sequel.