Pacific Rim: Everything Wrong With It In 9 Minutes Or Less

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Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim is a strange beast. While some genre fans consider the science fiction monster movie one of the year’s best, many also decried it as one of the dumbest films of the summer. There’s no arguing that the film was full of imagination with its creature and robot design, but it lacked conviction and an engaging story. Was Pacific Rim just a dumb action movie, or a middling film with serious storytelling problems? Like clockwork, the people at CinemaSins have put together a new video for us: “Everything Wrong with Pacific Rim.”

The problem with Pacific Rim is the way its story was was told. It was far too silly for anyone to take it seriously, but at times it feel like Guillermo del Toro was trying to recount the most important tale ever told. It suffered from an inconsistent tone and story structure. It didn’t help that the film’s protagonist was as hollow as the concrete wall surrounding Sydney, Australia in Pacific Rim. Charlie Hunnam’s Raleigh Becket was a bland character with a clich├ęd backstory and little to no personality or charm.

Pacific Rim‘s opening sequence was too long and felt more like an exposition dump than a way to get an audience into the movie. Some of the world’s backstory could’ve been told throughout the film instead of all frontloaded. According to CinemaSins, it was 17 minutes into the film before the actual story got started. Pacific Rim‘s story was not big enough to justify such a long introduction.

CinemaSins points out that perhaps Pacific Rim should’ve opened with Mako Mori’s backstory, and why she wanted to become a pilot. It was one of the more memorable moments in the film and a traumatic moment like that would’ve gotten the audience engaged in a hurry. They think Rinko Kikuchi’s Mako should’ve been Pacific Rim’s main character instead of its sidekick. She was more likable and interesting as a character than Hunnam’s ho-hum performance as Raleigh Becket.

As flawed as Pacific Rim may be, del Toro’s film was popular enough with audiences around the world that Legendary Pictures might greenlight a sequel. Pacific Rim grossed $407.6 million worldwide, against a production budget of $190 million. While that seems like a profitable film, Pacific Rim needed to make more money to be considered a breakthrough hit.

Nevertheless, Guillermo del Toro and the film’s co-screenwriter Travis Beacham (the guy who named everything in the film as if he were a 12-year-old boy) are working on the sequel film’s screenplay, in the hopes that it will be made one day. If it took del Toro five years to get a sequel to Hellboy off the ground, maybe it will take another five years to get Pacific Rim 2 into theaters. According to the Mexican director, the Pacific Rim sequel would include even bigger Jaegers and Kaiju, as well as a melding of both beasts into one big monstrosity.

Pacific Rim is now available on Blu-ray/DVD and as a digital download. Hopefully, it will be available on Netflix Streaming soon.


  1. Angel Rivera says:

    You might be right, but i loved it. I wasn’t expecting Shakespeare or some art film. I wanted robots and monsters fighting. I didn’t want one those Science fiction films that try to be so profound about the meaning of life. I wanted to get away reality for a couple of hours…

  2. zirtoc says:

    It was big and dumb. Too often these days (Transformers, I’m looking at you) the action is too chopped up – swing a fist (new camera angle) smash (new camera angle) monster grunts (new camera angle) cut to robot, cut to monster, cut to robot…it just makes your head spin. I think many action movies would be well served to show longer takes – they don’t have to be Gravity long, but just a little longer so the fights make sense. I get dizzy trying to figure out what’s happening in some of the recent big action sequences.

  3. Carl Mark Cooke says:

    Concept was fantastic, Execution was woeful. Played out like Godzilla meets Power Rangers meets TopGun. If they’re going to do another, please please do a reboot rather than a sequel. So much promise wasted….

  4. Endgadget says:

    “The problem with Pacific Rim is the way its story was was told. It was far too silly for anyone to take it seriously,” – That might actually be true of most of the films that we watch.

    As it stands I have no issues with the film and actually preferred it to many of the Summer blockbusters.

  5. Brian says:

    Probably the worst Guillermo del Toro film I’ve ever seen… that however does not mean that it’s awful. His worst is certainly better than any of the Transformers films for instance. I felt rushed to me… the beginning was pretty cool and then we basically rush through the whole thing and solve the problems and the world is saved. I actually disagree with those that bash Hunnam’s performance; I thought he did ok and that he had decent chemistry with Mako. That said, the characters and their relationship was very underdeveloped. It started out feeling really good. and then right around when you feel like you should be getting to the middle of the film the final battle occurs and they shutdown the portal where the Kaiju come from once and for all. Imagine if after blasting out of Mos Eisley we just skip to the destruction of the Death Star and then the entire Empire surrenders. Or if in Avatar after they destroy the tree the next scene is the battle at the end.the first two thirds were fun for me. The last third (more of quarter really it was so rushed) was visually disappointing under the ocean and was just like a weird Independence Day knock off that tied up way too much. For all the talk about the early part of the Kaiju war… why wasn’t that made into a film? Nothing against brilliant standalone movies but epic scifi flicks are born to be trilogies and Del Toro made some weird calls with pacing here.

  6. Moon Moon says:

    Honestly, after seeing the preview for this movie, all I could think of was all the parallels between it and an anime I watched years ago called GODANNAR. There were differences, but it was all there. Teams of one man and one woman paired up to pilot giant robots and defend the Earth and civilization from “Mimetic Beasts” that they had no idea where they were coming from. Most crawled out of a fissure deep in the ocean and were considered aliens. I think I’d rather see a live action remake of the anime with Del Torro’s monster design. The story was equally cheesy and cliched in GODANNAR as well, but with more anime style.