Pacific Rim is a movie where you sit down and shut off your brain from all forms of reason. Guillermo del Toro directing a movie where giant robots battle giant monsters, what could go wrong. Unfortunately, there are a few issues which make Pacific Rim an epic film. I finally had the chance to watch Pacific Rim on Blu-ray and I regret not seeing it in theaters. Unlike the recent rash of comic book superhero movies, Pacific Rim is a completely unique universe filled with plenty of action.
Written by Del Toro and Travis Beacham, the film follows earth as it’s under attack from Kaiju, a viciouis monster that rose from the depths and attacked San Francisco. The attack took the lives of 10,000 lives and millions of dollars in damage. Jets finally took the beast down after six days of destruction. Soon more Kaiju attacked in various cities across the world. Countries join forces to find a way to battle the Kaiju and launch the Jaeger program. Giant robots manned by two pilots were put into training for action. The pilots minds are linked through a process known as The Drift. Pilots can share memories and become linked to become a stronger fighters. The Jaegers seem to be the solution to defeat the Kaiju until one Jaeger is beaten.
The year is 2020 and Jaeger Gipsy Danger has been sent out to protect the Alaskan coast line. It is piloted by brothers Yancy (Diego Klattenhoff) and Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam), two of the programs best pilots. This Kaiju is different, it shreds the Jaeger in two and rips Yancy out of the machine. Raleigh is able to kill the beast and pilot the Jaeger back to land. Raleigh, unable to recover, leaves the Jaeger program and works as a construction worker building the defensive walls along the coast.
More and more Jaegers start getting beaten by Kaiju, causing the government to decommission the Jaegers. The military will only fund the program for eight months until the walls are finished. The four remaining Jaegers are moved to Hong Kong under the leadership of Commander Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba). The remaining Jaegers are comprised of Australia’s Striker Eureka, China’s Crimson Typhoon, Russia’s Cherno Alpha, and a refurbished Gipsy Danger. Commander Pentecost convinces Raleigh to return to the fight promising a new partner. Pentecost objects, but Raleigh fights to have Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi), an inexperienced pilot as his partner. Scientists Dr. Newton Geiszler (Charlie Day) and Dr. Hermann Gottlieb (Burn Gorman) warn that even more Kaiju are on the way. All objections are cast aside when the scientists projections come true and more Kaiju start rising up from the ocean. After this point, Pacific Rim is in full-throttle action movie mode. The battle sequences are long, running 25-minutes in length.
Character development is lackluster, with the narrative seeming rushed at times and overly drawn out in others. Reading the prequel graphic novel by Beacham is almost pre-requisite for understanding Pacific Rim. Don’t worry though, if you haven’t read it you will surely enjoy the explosive action which is the best part of this movie. The Jaeger and Kaiju are two of the most inventive creatures. Jaegers remind me of a mix of Steampunk design and futuristic technology. Charlie Hunnam and Idris Elba are great, but Rinko Kikuchi is the standout for the film. I can’t wait to see her in 47 Ronin.
The Blu-ray looks and sounds fantastic and is a worthwhile purchase for anyone like me, who missed it in theaters. The 7.1 surround sound track adds to the battle sequences. I felt immersed in the scenes with the crashing of building and the sound of metal smashing into Kaiju flesh surrounding me. The muted colors of the Jaeger base and that of the fight sequences pop on screen thanks to the high definition 1080p/AVC-encoded video transfer. What makes Pacific Rim a must-own for fans is the amount of special features on the two-disc set. Below is a list of the special features.
- Audio Commentary (Disc 1)
- Focus Points
- The Director’s Notebook (Disc 2)
- The Digital Artistry of Pacific Rim (Disc 2)
- The Shatterdome (Disc 2)
- Deleted Scenes (Disc 2)
- Drift Space (Disc 2)
- Blooper Reel (Disc 2)
Pacific Rim’s action sequence and inventive story make the film a must-watch. If you missed it on the big screen, don’t miss it on Blu-ray. Explosive action scenes and a unique storyline make Pacific Rim a must-watch for geeks and genre fans!
Pacific Rim is a movie where you sit down and shut off your brain from all forms of reason. The action outweighs the characters in this summer tentpole.