It’s been five years since Guillermo del Toro’s last film, and between the problems he faced working on the “Hobbit” movies and trying to get passion project “In the Mountains of Madness” off the ground,” you could hardly blame the guy if he had just called it quits. But instead of getting frustrated by the Hollywood system, he gave them exactly what they wanted: an action-packed blockbuster that also appealed to his inner 12-year-old. “Pacific Rim” is about as close to a Transformers/Godzilla mash-up as you’ll ever see, so it’s not surprising how quickly fanboys jumped on the bandwagon. Unfortunately, the film lacks the uniqueness of the director’s other projects, because while it may not be based on a preexisting property like a lot of summer fare, it still feels oddly generic. That being said, you definitely won’t be bored, and that’s to the credit of the rich mythology that del Toro has created.
Set in the not-too-distant future, giant beasts (referred to as kaiju) have emerged from an inter-dimensional rift below the Pacific Ocean to wreak havoc on every major coastal city from San Francisco to Tokyo. In response, the world’s governments came together to build giant robots called jaegers to combat these monsters, with two pilots controlling each machine via a neurological sync known as drifting. The more compatible the pilots, the better they perform. Though successful for several years, the jaeger program has become increasingly less effective as the kaiju continue to adapt and evolve. When the program is ordered to be shut down, commanding officer Marshall Pentecost (Idris Elba) recruits a retired jaeger pilot named Raleigh (Charlie Hunnam) to team up with rookie Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi), with whom he shares a particularly strong connection, and spearhead one final attack in the fight for humanity’s survival.