Movie Review: Guillermo Del Toro’s ‘Pacific Rim’ is an Emotional Thrill [Video]

Guillermo del Toro’s monsters-versus-robots fantasy demolishes every other summer blockbuster with ease.

After losing the chance to make The Hobbit, Mexican director Guillermo del Toro has finally got his hands on a big-budget Hollywood tentpole picture after impressing comic-book fans with a pair of Hellboy movies and the art-cinema circuit with Spanish-language film Pan’s Labyrinth.

Guillermo Del Toro’s “Pacific Rim” is a movie that is loaded with images and ideas that are fantastic, as the director introduces an entirely new world to audiences with a robots-versus-monsters scenario that includes the same sort of nerdy details and sci-fi jargon as its overcomplicated brethren, but under del Toro it all makes sense — and even better, he makes us care about it.

Pacific Rim is entirely in keeping with much expensively-made effects-heavy cinema of the present time: it’s put together with such artistry and such devotion that it can’t help but be impressive as a visual spectacle, says the Guardian.

Pacific Rim begins by defining two new words. The first is “Kaiju”, which means giant beast in Japanese, and the second is “Jaeger”, which is German for hunter. Over the next two hours and 11 minutes, the film goes on to offer a bold, exhaustive and utterly convincing definition of a third word: fun.

The film opens with a brief recap of recent history, starting with a giant monster attacking and destroying the Golden Gate Bridge. And in order to fight with these creatures, humankind overcomes its geographic and political differences to create Jaegers, robots of equivalent size that are piloted by two people via a sort of mindmeld called a “neural bridge.”

The fraternal bond between Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam, Sons of Anarchy) and his brother Yancy (Diego Klattenhoff) makes them the best monster killers in the Jaeger program.

However, the jaeger program is discontinued after Raleigh Becket loses his brother Yancy in combat, leading politicians to shift resources to constructing giant walls around coastal cities to keep the monsters out.

Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) is the man doing his best to hold the Jaeger program together, even as the governments of the world decide to give up and just start building walls around everything. Even after an event takes place that proves that the walls won’t stop the Kaiju, Stacker is unable to talk anyone into keeping the Jaeger program alive. That’s why he tracks Raleigh down.

Finally Raleigh, the disillusioned soldier, finds himself paired up with ambitious novice Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi), whose own past traumas may prove to be the key that unlocks the program’s greatest partnership yet.

To give his film some point, some drive, del Toro turns to a series of human characters to carry the dramatic weight. Idris Elba dons a general’s uniform to play the special-ops mastermind charged with overseeing the Jager programme; Charlie Hunnam is a scrapper who is the best damn robot pilot on the planet (or something); Rinko Kikuchi a troubled Japanese yes-woman who dreams of becoming a robot pilot herself.

The greatest virtue of Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim may be that you can always understand what’s happening, what the characters are doing, and why they are doing it.

The production design by Andrew Neskoromny and Carol Spier and the art direction by Elinor Rose Galbraith and Richard L. Johnson is masterful, and the film has an amazing, vivid palette that is captured perfectly by Guillermo Navarro’s photography, writes Hitfix.

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