Pacific Rim movie review: Popcorn with a shot of Jaeger?
This epic sci-fi action adventure pits two-brained human warriors inside a Transformers-style robot against giant, angry, squishy aliens. While the story doesn’t make giant sense, getting to watch Charlie Hunnam for two hours makes for a brilliant plot.
3 Stars: Perfect for Godzilla fans
The world is in peril again. Set slightly in the future, this movie from director Guillermo Del Toro tells the story of alien monsters called Kaiju (Japanese for "giant beast") that make their way into the Pacific Ocean through a paranormal breach in a deep ocean trench. What world they come from, no one knows. But Kaiju are monsters of biblical proportions.
The United States, along with several other countries, hatches a plan to build giant robots that are so powerful, they need two human brains to operate. Two elite fighters called Jaegers (German for "hunter") pair up to go inside the robot to operate it. But controlling the machines is complicated because the two brains must sync together, much like a computer network. This mental fusion is called “the Drift” and exposes the connected Jaegers' inner thoughts and memories to each other, providing an intense experience for the warriors.
Raleigh Becket (Sons of Anarchy's Charlie Hunnam) was once a rock star Jaeger, famous and fearless, until his partner, brain-tapped brother Yancy (Diego Klattenhoff) was killed in a battle. Five years after Becket’s exit from the Jaeger program, Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba), commander of the Pan Pacific Defense Corps, asks him to return to fight the increasing Kaiju threat. Pentecost tells Becket the world’s about to end and convinces Becket to at least die fighting.
Becket’s new Jaeger partner is Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi), a Japanese woman warrior whom Pentecost wants to protect for personal reasons. Mori has her own history of loss and pain, making her vulnerable to emotional decision-making, but ultimately, Pentecost can’t deny her fighting ability. And, well, the world is ending, so better give her a shot.
Pacific Rim is at its best with massive robots battling enormous, squishy aliens in the deep dark ocean. Watching the aliens vomit blue goo in 3D has never made puking such a fun, visual experience.