The Commerce Journal

July 24, 2013

'Pacific Rim' offers perfect summer movie fun

Jordan Wright
The Commerce Journal

COMMERCE — In an era in which summer blockbusters seem to be getting progressively grimmer, “Pacific Rim” comes along with the injection of fun that this season’s movie lineup so desperately needed.

In a world overtaken by alien invaders in the form of giant monsters that have crossed a dimensional rift in the Pacific Ocean, Giant Robot pilot Raleigh Beckett –played by Charlie Hunamm– must join the human military in a last ditch effort to drive back the invaders before their numbers become too overbearing.

Aiming to emulate the mecha (giant robot action) movement of anime of the mid to late 1990s with a splash of kaiju (giant monster) mythology, director Guillermo Del Toro of Hellboy fame ultimately sets up more of a proof of concept piece than a new property but the end result is satisfying, nonetheless.

Del Toro’s attention to detail to the storytelling conventions of the genre he is crafting a love letter toward is astonishing and allows him to create his own universe without ripping off his inspirations. “Pacific Rim” is a better American “Godzilla” movie than the actual American “Godzilla”

None of that even touches on the breath-taking mech on monster action, which puts Michael Bay and his over $500 million “Transformers” trilogy to absolute shame. The sheer scope and detail of the fights is admirable alone but the choreography of the later set pieces are masterfully handled.

Best of all, “Pacific Rim” makes no pretentions of being anything more than good old fashioned blockbuster fun. The playfulness of the character interactions and overall atmosphere easily make this the most entertaining film that I have seen in theaters all summer.