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Pacific Rim Astonishes & Wins our hearts: 5/5

pacific_rim_2013_movie-wide | Legendary Television
pacific_rim_2013_movie-wide | Legendary Television

Transformers? Huh? What's that?

After viewing such a spectacle, those were the exact words I had flowing through my pulsing and overdriven brain of excitement and pure satisfaction.

Mexican visionary Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy 1 & 2) storms back onto the silver screen with the true revitalization of the science fiction genre in his latest skull crushing masterpiece, Pacific Rim.

Charlie Hunnam & Riko Kikuchi star in Pacific Rim Charlie Hunnam & Riko Kikuchi star in Pacific Rim

Charlie Hunnam & Riko Kikuchi star in Pacific Rim

Expecting alien life would come from the stars, we have never been more wrong as giant monsters known as the Kaiju (The Japanese term for “strange creature”, see the 1954 classic Godzilla for further details) erupt from deep beneath the Pacific Ocean, through a portal within a crevasse. After numerous episodes of destruction and chaos caused by the Kaiju, the world unites as one and a war is raised resulting in the deaths of millions, as well as the decline of humanities resources. Due to the Kaiju overpowering our military forces, political agreements are signed and a special kind of weapon is designed. They are called Jaegers, gigantic fighting robots piloted by two trained individuals. “In order to fight monsters, we created monsters of our own,” the movie simplifies.

The film follows Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam), a washed out former pilot who decides to retire and disappear from the world of machines fighting monsters after a dreadful, life damaging experience losing a loved one.

As time passes, the Jaegers become less effective after the Kaiju’s cross through the portal more consistently, gaining the upper hand through their adaption in fighting the Jaegers. The worlds united government come to an agreement to terminate the Jaeger program after losing hope, deploying the remaining machines to Hong Kong to defend the exposed coastline until a stable wall can be constructed.

Unable to come to terms with the termination of his forces and determined to end the war by destroying the portal, commanding officer Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) tracks down Becket and convinces him to get back into the game, ultimately teaming Becket up with his most advanced and personal protégé Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi). Together, they plan the necessary and critical mission to cancel the apocalypse once and for all.

Pacific Rim breaks through expectations and soars beyond, giving us the summer blockbuster we wholeheartedly deserved. From its groundbreaking visual effects supplied by Industrial Light & Magic (Star Wars), gripping acting boosted by emotion and a simply graspable plot, the film doesn’t repel in proving to us that science fiction remains alive and is heavier than ever. It just needs to be made by the right people.

Pacific-Rim-IMAX-posterGuillermo del Toro takes us back to our childhood with

Guillermo del Toro takes us back to our childhood with Pacific Rim. I couldn’t help but reminisce of the simple days when I was a little boy sitting in front of my parents state of the art 90’s TV watching Mighty Morphin Power Rangers on the family room floor. The film pays respects to the influence of science fiction Japanese anime, basically giving us a live action approach on the specific genre, much like Ridley Scott’s 1982 cult-classic Blade Runner, another science fiction masterpiece.

But of all the homages one can pick out from Pacific Rim, it’s the Japanese classic monster movies starting from the 50’s that is the most prominent, which starred the Kaiju. Guillermo del Toro brought back the impact this genre had on cinema in a way none of us could’ve imagined by educating the new generation on what once was, creatively constructing his own original take which fits into the genre beautifully. The respect for cinema Pacific Rim has seals the deal in its approach to revitalize an important category of film that was lost in time.

This is a powerful picture that embraces it all; from comedic to dramatic elements, realistic visuals and a whole lot of inspiration, Guillermo hit us where it’s sensitive. Our forgotten childhood nostalgias.

Those who understand what they’ve witnessed will appreciate it a lot more than those who don’t. It’s the film we never thought we would get, and we sure as hell didn’t expect it to be this good.

Bravo Guillermo, you’ve given us the best movie of the year so far.

Go watch Pacific Rim.