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Friday, Oct 15, 2021

Movie Review: ‘Pacific Rim: Uprising’ is giant robot fighting fun

Guillermo del Toro at the 2015 San Diego Comic Con International in San Diego, California.
Guillermo del Toro at the 2015 San Diego Comic Con International in San Diego, California.

Movies about giant robots fighting otherworldly beings seem to be all the rage in the last decade. There have been multiple franchises attempting to wow audiences with big, explosive fun, and there are really only two names that have come out on top: Transformers, and Pacific Rim.

While Transformers tried to emulate the toys, the later movies seem to have overstayed their welcome. On the other hand, Pacific Rim tried a different approach, and it seems to have worked. “Pacific Rim: Uprising” may be a bit cheesy or clunky at times, but it is a big, fun movie with epic moments and stunning battle scenes.

The first Pacific Rim film, directed by Guillermo Del Toro in 2013, introduced audiences to a world invaded by giant monsters called “Kaiju.” In the sequel, a new cast of characters lead viewers back into the fray against a new evil, and it is really a wild ride.

John Boyega and Scott Eastwood are the stars in “Pacific Rim:Uprising,” and they are met with both new faces and returning faces for the franchise. Altogether, the movie is led very well by its acting, as Boyega does a wonderful job in a film not named Star Wars and Eastwood is a serviceable co-star for the whole film.

In addition, like the original “Pacific Rim,” “Uprising” provides stunning fight sequences and larger-than-life visuals that are truly a sight to see. Watching this movie at home really does it a disservice; the big screen is where these giant robots thrive, and audiences will be thankful for it. Moreover, the monsters they are fighting are truly a sight to be seen. Just when you think the artists of the film couldn't come up with another crazy Kaiju, another gorgeous example pops up to wow the audience.

While giant fighting robots are fun for the most part, there does need to be a strong enough plot to carry the movie for a whole two hours. The plot did work most of the time, but it felt like it was trying too hard at times. More specifically, the plot tried too hard to connect to the first film and add things in that were not already established in the franchise. This, paired with an already shaky story, led for some cheesy jokes and questionable plot devices.

However, the movie is quite successful overall. The acting distracts from the sometimes odd plot, and the crazy action scenes are more than enough to keep a viewer enthralled throughout the movie. Sometimes, a movie needs to be just a fun, action filled experience and nothing more. “Pacific Rim: Uprising” fills this need well, and it also opens the door for another entry into the franchise. After this successful outing, moviegoers will be waiting eagerly to see their favorite fighting robots on the big screen.


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