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PACIFIC RIM (2013) Post-Release
#1

It's coming out this weekend, so I'm jumping the gun a little.

All in all, I thought this was a super-cool movie.  But it's missing so much that could've made it great.  I never got as engaged as I wanted to as I watched a movie that clearly had a lot of love and earnestness go into it.

It's the script and Del Toro's deficiencies as a storyteller that really kinda get in the way.  The film's heart is in the right place, but it doesn't come fully through.  Its lead characters aren't developed enough to be truly engaging.  A lot of that storytelling groundwork felt skimmed past to get straight to the jaeger/kaiju action (which I thought were a ton of fun with a good amount of variety).  As Devin's review tries to tapdance around a bit... it's the supporting characters who end up being more interesting and fun.  But even then, it's not enough.  There are the basic elements of the type of sacrifice, teamwork, and heroism I really love in films like this (unlike stupid Man of Steel...).  But without the proper foundation to back it up, it just wasn't up to snuff.

A great example of the way this movie falls short?  The Drift.  Such a cool concept that is established pretty well early in the film.  Should've been really interesting and a great way to up the emotional stakes of the kaiju battles.  But as it is in the film, its a wasted concept except for when its used as a flashback for Rinko Kikuchi's past.  And even then, it was just used like a standard flashback.

But let me go into what I dug.

The COLORS.  Oh my, the colors.  Even set in raging oceans at nighttime, this film is a feast of color.  Just a LUDICROUSLY gorgeous and sometimes psychedelic palette.  

Elba is great.  I'd love to see a movie about his early days as a jaeger pilot.  Charlie Day, Ron Perlman, and that corporate henchman from TDKR with the weird haircut are a hoot in small roles.

The kaiju/jaegar fights genuinely excited me the way some of you fools got off on Superman punching for a while to no effect.  In PACIFIC RIM, every fight feels messy and desperate even as the choreography is clear.  Every attack feels like it's ripping something apart and there is a much better sense of escalation/progression to the combat.

That's right.  I brought up Man of Steel.  I plan to make this thread another nightmare.  Ohohohohoh

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#2
AQuestion: did you see it in 3D. Was it good/ added anything to the fights?

Request: please don't turn this into another DC movie thread.
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#3
AI thought it was a great looking post-conversion. Really well done.

Though, is it really a post-conversion when so much of the movie is CG??? Hahahah

I can't be held responsible for my actions...
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#4
Quote:
(unlike stupid Man of Steel...)

So stupid.

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#5
A[quote name="Andy Bain" url="/community/t/148477/pacific-rim-2013-post-release#post_3542240"]Question: did you see it in 3D. Was it good/ added anything to the fights?

Request: please don't turn this into another DC movie thread.[/quote]

I agree I think we need to make it a rule not to talk of a DC or Marvel movies. No more references to that or Lone Ranger for that matter. Its getting beyond old. I'm done discussing that. I've said my opinion already and sick of repeating myself over and over.

I'm just so excited to see this on Friday! This is the film I was looking foward to all summer and I can't wait!
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#6

Just saw it..

A lot of fun.. just like MoS

And yes mcnooj and freeman are so stupid

Totally agree there

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#7

Why am I stupid?  I love MoS.

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#8

My mistake..

Apologies

yeah I know.. I watched Spartacus too  much

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#9

Just  sick of the anti MoS BS around the place..  they are so FoS

Did not mean to offend you

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#10

No it's an honest mistake.  I understand, those anti MoS whackjobs are THE WORST.  Bunch of baby rapers they are.

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#11

Cheers freeman.

So mcnooj wuvved allthe pweddy colours in PR?

I thought it made it look a bit garish actually

overall a lot of fun though

has been a great year so far IM3 STID Mos and now PR

My nomenclature is feeling good.. I mean even WWZ had some cool moments..  Counting to 12 on the edge of the high rise was my fave and the gnashing teeth on the aircraft looked and sounded so cool to me

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#12

First: Man of Steel is so bad, man. But it's no World War Z.

Second: Pacific Rim is the best blockbuster of the summer by several miles. For anyone who loves giant monster movies- one of the most niche genres in cinema- the film is nothing short of magical. If you've ever forgotten, even for a second, why you love watching colossal beasts knocking over buildings and causing mayhem, Pacific Rim will remind you, loudly, beautifully, and intelligently. Even if kaiju aren't your bag, it works. You don't need to be a Toho enthusiast (or a Funimation fan) to get into what Guillermo del Toro is doing here. (Though admittedly it probably helps.)

If there's one thing that's really missing here, it's obvious metaphor and subtext. Godzilla represented a nation's fear of atomic power almost a decade after Hiroshima and Nagasaki suffered the horror of nuclear warfare, expressing a combination of grief and awe over "the monster's" destructive capacity. (Arguably, we're meant to empathize somewhat with Godzilla even as he burns Tokyo to the ground; the man-in-suit innovation may have been accidental, since Eiji Tsuburaya wanted to use stop-motion as his first choice, but it definitely gives the king of all monsters his own humanity.) I wouldn't necessarily say that Godzilla set the standard as far as beneath-the-surface, allegorical stuff goes- there are any number of kaiju movies that are just big, dumb fun (or simply big and dumb)- but even today the best monster movies and kaiju riffs contain one element of that or another. (See: The Host, probably the best non-Rim giant monster movie of the last decade and the heir apparent to Godzilla, if only on thematic grounds.)

Pacific Rim's monsters don't really represent anything at a glance. They're just pure engines of havoc sent to Earth to annihilate humanity, and they're really, really good at it. But that's okay, because Pacific Rim doesn't really need them to be anything than that; the real subtext here is about a world divided coming together to fight for the common good. It's a movie about how good humanity can be to each other when faced with a crisis that doesn't much care about social constructs, and instead aims to sow wanton chaos everywhere and among everybody. If the monsters themselves personify disaster, then the subtext here is about uniting and overcoming petty squabbles to survive and endure. For some that might not be as satisfying a metaphor as Godzilla can claim, but it's there, and the central decency and optimism at Pacific Rim's core gives it all the meaning it needs to be more than empty, brilliantly staged spectacle.

Nooj's comments about the colors are spot-on; this thing looks gorgeous. Ignore every asshole who offers the stock anti-blockbuster criticism about visibility; you can see every single detail present in every CGI creation in every frame. Part of that has to do with del Toro's color palette; this thing boasts all the colors of the rainbow, adding necessary flair to each fight and giving them all their own visual identity and a surprisingly trippy bent. There's also the genius decision to have teams of helicopters present in just about every single battle- while they have a story function (they airlift the jaegers in and out of presumably out of the field and provide reconnaissance), they also have a spectacle function, illuminating clashes with their floodlights. It's a clever notion.

As with most GDT joints, Pacific Rim is absolutely stuffed with great characters; Raleigh is indeed the least interesting of the bunch, but he has a well-formed arc and I think the film focuses enough on his past to make him function as a character in the present. I actually appreciate that the trauma he suffers in the beginning of the film is depicted and only ever revisited through dialogue; Tony Stark already went through PTSD this summer, and the film makes it clear that as much as Raleigh's grief still haunts him, he's reconciled enough with literally feeling his brother's death that he can get by. (Aside: I'd argue that the way he treats Mako has a lot to do with how his brother's death impacted him as far as how protective he is of his co-pilots. Someone is going to claim that the film marginalizes Mako by putting her in distress situations that Raleigh helps her out of, but I think that does a disservice to Raleigh's character and how the death of his brother has affected him.)

Kikuchi and Elba are both phenomenal, with the latter really stealing the show every time he's on screen; he carries the weight of the entire planet on his shoulders admirably, and when he finally enters the fray himself in the film's climax, it's a huge thrill. Kikuchi avails herself well, too, and has what's probably the most satisfying kill in the entire movie; it's the kind of beat that can get anyone on their feet applauding, and in fact the audience at my screening went absolutely bananas when it happens. ("For my family!") Charlie Day is Charlie Day disguised as J.J. Abrams; your mileage may vary, though there's something delightful about seeing him chased through the streets by a monster that looks kinda like the beast from Cloverfield. Meta!

Come for the monsters, stay for GDT, the cast, and, of course, Perlman being Perlman. Also: make sure to stick around through the credits. There's a bit. And it's fucking amazing.

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#13

I already brought it up in the pre-release but I've seen it and my thoughts are pretty much the same as McNooj's about how the visuals are great but I found the story to be somewhat lacking. I certainly didn't hate the film and the spectacle is magnificent but I had a really hard time following the film, like while I was sitting in the theater I knew what was going on but it seemed there was something blocking me from immersing myself in the film.

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#14

I thought the middle nine hours REALLY dragged- the lead character was so boring.

I'm also bummed at the wasting of the "Drift" concept. The most interesting way the film can show two characters are compatible is fist fighting? If he can beat them up, they aren't compatible? And then, even though they're linked, he's still issuing orders out loud? It didn't seem like the idea had been fully thought out.

The big fight was amazing, though.

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#15

Wish I'd read about the credits thing before, we walked out immediately.  Will wait for when we see it in 3D I guess.


Both me and my girl loved it.  She REALLY loved it though.  She was cheering, and punching the air and saying stuff like "ultimate cool!" through it.

When we usually come outnof a film, and I ask her what her favourite bit is, she usually comes up with one thing.  This one she kept going "no, wait it was THIS, no wait, it was this" (for the record it was the "For my family" that won out.  Although she really liked:

when Hannibal Chau got eaten by the baby Kaiju.  She thought the baby Kaiju was "adorable"

Those Aussie accents were fucking terrible though.  Awful.

I liked the two scientists.  The Brit one made me think of Quatermass kind of scientists and Charlie Day was that OTT manic scientist type you get in anime.  Aside from the Aussie accents I liked everyone to be fair.

Edit: Just spoiled myself on what the post credits scene was.  Have to stay for that.  My girl will LOVE it.

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#16

Nick and I will have a Tag-Team up tomorrow. We're still figuring out who's working the balls and who's working the shaft (I kid- there's some varied ground to cover).

And I love you guys all so much, but I'm going to start banning people who talk about motherfucking goddamn MOS in this goddamn motherfucking thread.

: )

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#17

...  It was all of them Renn.  I tolds dem nots ta do it!

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#18
AJust got back. I liked it but didn't love it.

The final sequence was not nearly as strong as the big fight in Hong Kong. The visibility was a bit worse and the plotting a bit shaky. "Oh the bomb isn't going off, you'll need to use the manual override. Don't fall into the whirring gears just near the control panel." I suppose I was expecting something crazier when they got beyond the breach. Like hundreds of Kaiju or tentacles grabbing Gipsy Danger, or something

Raleigh and Mako were ok, but they seemed to sort their crap out early on, and then that's it for them. Most of the drama left in the film is will they figure out how to destroy the Breach, and that's it.

I feel better getting that out of the way.

I still loved the world, the scientists, Ron Perlman and his posse. The attention paid to all the Jaeger and their crew. That fight in Hong Kong is a mind bender.

And yes, those Australian accents are terrible.
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#19

Yep.  That was great fun.  Leave it to GdT to nail the one thing that all other Summer blockbusters this year (save IM3) completely dropped the ball on - having actual human characters in your film.

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#20
Quote:
Originally Posted by The NZ Natural View Post

Yep.  That was great fun.  Leave it to GdT to nail the one thing that all other Summer blockbusters this year (save IM3) completely dropped the ball on - having actual human characters in your film.

I know Vin Diesel may look like a God amongst mortals, but I assure you, Dominic Toretto is very much human.

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#21

I guess I'm not really sure what people expect the Drift to be other than a plot mechanic. This isn't Pacific Inception, it's Pacific Rocket Punch A Kaiju Right In The Fucking Face. Drift space is just meant to reinforce the film's emphasis on people working together for a common good. The film uses it in a clever way to give Mako backstory - it's one of the film's most effective sequences - but Drift space is nothing more than a device, and I think GDT and Hunnam get Raleigh's pain at losing his brother while connected through the Drift well enough without having to bludgeon us with it.

And I can imagine people saying lots of things about Pacific Rim, but calling it "boring" is beyond me. Even the non-action stuff is interesting, unlike so many other modern blockbusters that put all of their stock in big set pieces. When the film focuses on its nutty, eccentric professors/scientists, it's just as engaging as when it focuses on kaiju battles.

One thought about the monsters: they're blank slates, which may or may not be intentional as that absence of surface metaphor allows them to stand in for any catastrophe that impacts an entire culture or nation. People may watch Pacific Rim and think about 9/11 or the Boston Marathon bombings or recent mass-shootings, and that's fine - they're meant to. The kaiju here just aren't crafted to reflect a specific global incident. They're just walking terrorist attacks and disaster zones.

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#22
http://www.filmfreakcentral.net/ffc/2013....html#more

Film Freak review. Chaw's a big GdT fan but was a bit disappointed.
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#23
Quote:
Originally Posted by agracru View Post

One thought about the monsters: they're blank slates, which may or may not be intentional as that absence of surface metaphor allows them to stand in for any catastrophe that impacts an entire culture or nation. People may watch Pacific Rim and think about 9/11 or the Boston Marathon bombings or recent mass-shootings, and that's fine - they're meant to. The kaiju here just aren't crafted to reflect a specific global incident. They're just walking terrorist attacks and disaster zones.

I was actually disappointed when Charlie Day went into the generic motivation behind the kaiju and their masters.  

OH GOD THEY GO FROM PLANET TO PLANET AS THEY USE UP ALL THE RESOURCES!!!   AND WE'RE NEXT!!!!!

(eyeroll)

If they're gonna go so generic, I'd rather they have just not explained that at all and just left them as MONSTERS THAT ARE JUST FUCKING OUR SHIT UP. (though I know that would alter the plot a bit)

Yeah, I didn't find the movie boring.  I just found myself never being all that engaged with the non-action stuff.  What character drama is there is promising, but the movie doesn't really test them.  Like Avatar, it just felt like stuff was resolved so easily in terms of plot.  There were multiple times in the movie I muttered, "Well THAT was a freebie..." to myself.

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#24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Renn Brown View Post

And I love you guys all so much, but I'm going to start banning people who talk about motherfucking goddamn MOS in this goddamn motherfucking thread.

: )

Hey!  My references to Man of Steel were completely relevant to my discussion of Pacific Rim!!!

YOU WILL NOT STOP ME.  YOU'LL ONLY MAKE ME STROOOOONGER!!!

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#25
Quote:
Originally Posted by agracru View Post

I guess I'm not really sure what people expect the Drift to be other than a plot mechanic. This isn't Pacific Inception, it's Pacific Rocket Punch A Kaiju Right In The Fucking Face. Drift space is just meant to reinforce the film's emphasis on people working together for a common good. The film uses it in a clever way to give Mako backstory - it's one of the film's most effective sequences - but Drift space is nothing more than a device, and I think GDT and Hunnam get Raleigh's pain at losing his brother while connected through the Drift well enough without having to bludgeon us with it.

And I can imagine people saying lots of things about Pacific Rim, but calling it "boring" is beyond me. Even the non-action stuff is interesting, unlike so many other modern blockbusters that put all of their stock in big set pieces. When the film focuses on its nutty, eccentric professors/scientists, it's just as engaging as when it focuses on kaiju battles.

One thought about the monsters: they're blank slates, which may or may not be intentional as that absence of surface metaphor allows them to stand in for any catastrophe that impacts an entire culture or nation. People may watch Pacific Rim and think about 9/11 or the Boston Marathon bombings or recent mass-shootings, and that's fine - they're meant to. The kaiju here just aren't crafted to reflect a specific global incident. They're just walking terrorist attacks and disaster zones.

I did like the stuff with Charlie Day and Ron Pearlman, but I just found all the stuff with the pilots relentlessly dull. Yet another hotshot rebel who dosen't really do anything rebellious (He's a loose cannon because he took ten seconds to move a boat out of the way before a kaiju fight). The main section that sunk the movie for me was the main pilot and the girl- we knew they were going to end up serving together. So, if you're going to spend the whole movie keeping them apart, I needed that conflict to be more interesting. I just felt like the movie was spinning it's wheels until it was time for the monster fight.

On a side note, I also am bored by female characters who can't function because they can't control their emotions. It also made me root for them less- I mean, because she's freaking out, their Jaeger almost kills the control room and every pilot. The leader is right to not want them piloting. And it's not really resolved onscreen- they can't fly a mech together, but then they can.  I dunno,  I was just really aware of the movie twiddling it's thumbs waiting for a set piece. (Except for the Charlie Day stuff, which probably should have been the main story.) I agree that the discovery of the aliens motives didn't bring anything to the table, though.

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#26

Oh, and in terms of the drift being a plot mechanic- maybe that was just me bringing in unfair expectations. It had been hyped to me that this movie had amazing world building, which is something I enjoy in science fiction. So, because I thought the world was going to be really good, I didn't think a rich concept like the drift was just going to be thrown away. I'll give the movie another chance, and readjust expectations to "Enjoy the monster fight".

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#27

The big thing for me here, is LOVE.

You can just FEEL love whenever you hear del Toro talk about his creations and characters.  It's something you can feel in Pan's Labyrinth (which I don't actually love completely) and Hellboy 2.  That love is such a great complement to del Toro's UTTER FUCKING JOY for these worlds.  Pacific Rim has good joy.  But I feel like the love was missing due to the characters getting the short end of the stick in terms of actual drama.  As I said, the potential is there.  The movie just speeds past them.

And as I brought up above, the ultra-generic/mundane motivation for the kaiju... it really takes away from that love that del Toro usually expresses for his movie monsters.  Without that love, they weren't as terrifying as they could be.  They just became your usual alien/monster threat.  This is one of those cases where I would've preferred an unmysterious mystery.  No mystery box.  Just creatures that fuck shit up doing what they do.  I'm talking about the way Darabont treated the creatures in THE MIST.  We don't know what they are.  They just... are.

To ask what the hell we were expecting from The Drift as more than just a plot mechanic?  It feels like a brush off, agracru, you jerk!  I don't think it's unfair AT ALL to have wanted more from it. It's a story device, certainly.  But it's a device that deals with memory, emotion, and trauma.  It's a device just GROANING with rich emotional jelly, and the only time it's really taken advantage of is the Rinko's childhood (that little girl was AMAZING, by the way).  That moment where she gazes up in awe at Elba... I wanted more of THAT in the film to balance out and enhance the ultra-coolness.

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#28
exactly...what's difficult to understand about wanting a plot device to be more than just a plot device when it has the potential to do that? when it could've helped give the film another thematic or psychological dimension beyond MECH SMASH KAIJU.

at the same time, i'm not saying there's anything wrong with liking that the plot device is just a plot device that serves the action and the simplistic and overdone theme of how humanity needs to band together in their time of ultimate need, blah blah blah. i do really see, though, how that simplicity could be a boon to some people when it comes to a big monster flick like this. but you can't blame others for wanting more when parts of the groundwork are already laid but never fully built on.
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#29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy Meritt View Post

I did like the stuff with Charlie Day and Ron Pearlman, but I just found all the stuff with the pilots relentlessly dull. Yet another hotshot rebel who dosen't really do anything rebellious (He's a loose cannon because he took ten seconds to move a boat out of the way before a kaiju fight). The main section that sunk the movie for me was the main pilot and the girl- we knew they were going to end up serving together. So, if you're going to spend the whole movie keeping them apart, I needed that conflict to be more interesting. I just felt like the movie was spinning it's wheels until it was time for the monster fight.

On a side note, I also am bored by female characters who can't function because they can't control their emotions. It also made me root for them less- I mean, because she's freaking out, their Jaeger almost kills the control room and every pilot. The leader is right to not want them piloting. And it's not really resolved onscreen- they can't fly a mech together, but then they can.  I dunno,  I was just really aware of the movie twiddling it's thumbs waiting for a set piece. (Except for the Charlie Day stuff, which probably should have been the main story.) I agree that the discovery of the aliens motives didn't bring anything to the table, though.

Well, he's not a loose cannon so much as he's a cocky hotshot who thinks he's too good to follow orders and winds up kinda getting his brother killed in the process. Saving the boat, ultimately, is kind of a dangerous move that puts the jaeger's back to the kaiju; it's not a decision that winds up being fatal (it's his hubris that proves lethal), but it's definitely unwise, and when your superior tells you not to do something, you probably should not do that something. He's just willful. That's how he acts the entire film - grabbing Stacker's arm, pushing him about his relationship with Mako, etc. By the time the film catches up to present, he's lost that hotshot attitude - he knows what it is to be defeated and, in a manner of speaking, what it is to die in a Jaeger - but he's just as persistent as ever.

As for keeping them apart...well, yeah, of course they're going to pilot a Jaeger together. We see that in the trailers, for one, and for another that's the kind of story blueprint we're working in here. For me what makes the conflict of "will they/won't they" compelling lies in his stubbornness, his outspoken nature, and the truth behind Stacker's decision to hold Mako back. He's not arbitrarily denying her the privilege of fighting in a Jaeger beside Raleigh; he's trying to protect his adopted daughter. He's a father doing whatever he can to save his child, and given that he's already saved her from a kaiju once, it's understandable that he might be reluctant to put her in a machine whose express purpose is to fight kaiju. I actually really liked that (and I now imagine that Elba lights up a room with the power of the sun everywhere he goes, though a colleague told me that this isn't the case), and I think it plays nicely with the father/son Aussies and their ultimate parting in the third act. It gives Stacker humanity and a weak spot, and it gives meaning to the question of whether Mako and Raleigh will pilot a Jaeger together.

Regarding the mecha incident...well, I figure it's like, I dunno, any movie where the hero struggles to learn their powers and then finally comes to terms with them. Mako fell into a trap every Jaeger ace is vulnerable to, and wound up overcoming it her second time in. I don't really see much of a problem with that apart from it feeling "sudden", though I feel like the film lets the neaer-miss with her Jaeger training breathe long enough for her immediate improvement to not feel like a cheat.

I'm still not getting why it's a problem for the monsters to have trope motivations for attacking Earth. If anything I think that's necessary for a film about humanity uniting against a common threat, if only because that motivation gives the humans a tangible problem to solve (and thus makes their unity more important). People don't always unite against common threats that are just acting based on nature. It makes much more sense for people to join together to fight off a foe whose sole purpose and goal is to extinguish all human life.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcnooj82 View Post

To ask what the hell we were expecting from The Drift as more than just a plot mechanic?  It feels like a brush off, agracru, you jerk!  I don't think it's unfair AT ALL to have wanted more from it. It's a story device, certainly.  But it's a device that deals with memory, emotion, and trauma.  It's a device just GROANING with rich emotional jelly, and the only time it's really taken advantage of is the Rinko's childhood (that little girl was AMAZING, by the way).  That moment where she gazes up in awe at Elba... I wanted more of THAT in the film to balance out and enhance the ultra-coolness.

My problem is where you fit all of that extra drift stuff in. Newt gets his drift moments (with Owen from Torchwood), and we see a little bit more of what drift space looks like, but this is already a 2 hour plus film, and it's hard to know where excess drift footage integrates smoothly with everything else. Maybe Yancy's death could have been experienced through drift space, but honestly, I think we get the most drift experience we need through the Mako flashback. More would have been nice, but I doubt it would have been necessary, and I don't think it makes sense to indulge cool plot devices unless they're necessary for the story to make sense or resonate on an emotional level.

The real challenge is that drift space only exists in Jaegers and when people link up to kaiju brains. So you have to have people hooked up to Jaegers or kaiju brains in order to delve into deep, emotional character explorations, but when people are hooked up to Jaegers and kaiju brains, they're generally in the middle of action beats. That's why the Mako bit works so, so well - the film engineers a great excuse for her to be in a Jaeger without having her rabbit-chasing meltdown cause a problem during a live mission. Trouble is that sort of thing only works once, I think, because you can only have so many training exercises go awry.


(And arguably a movie about people working together needs to have people actually work together. Drift space, as I said, is a plot device meant to emphasize the importance of human unity, but it's actually a bit of a cheat in that it completely overrides any need to have actors meaningfully interact with one another. Maybe that would have just been a case of too much of a good thing.)

Love...I don't know, man. YMMV. I felt GDT's love for kaiju every which way, from the care taken to give them each a distinct aesthetic identity and vitality to the pure glee he shows in dissecting the kaiju and exploring their biology. (Not to mention the cheek of having characters walk right into a monster's womb without realizing it.)

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#30
ALike it or not its a kids movie. A very well done kids movie.

Hence broad brush strokes

Watching it with my girl made me realise that. Stuff I rolled my eyes at she absolutely ate up (dangling above the gears etc).

Watching it with her probably enhanced MY enjoyment immeasurably.
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#31

Well, in terms of where to fit more drift space in- rather then extra footage, I'd rather things be replaced.

The big one for me, though, is I REALLY wish the "Brazilian Stick Fight" method of figuring out who is compatible had been replaced with something more interesting. (I'm not sure what, because I'm not a great sci-fi writer.) I feel like a Brazilian Stick Fight does not make sense to me, as a way to tell if two people would be able to share memories. Especially since they make such a big deal out of having a hard time finding someone to mix with the main pilot- he's kicking everyone's ass, so no one can share memories with him. But, when Charlie and Torchwood Guy need to mind meld, they don't have to fight with sticks. And Charlie doesn't have to fight a Kaiju with a stick to meld with him.

I kind of wonder if it should have been some kind of Blade Runner style personality test. There should probably be some happy medium between "sitting at a desk" and "Brazilian Stick Fight" that a good writer would come up with. It just felt so half cooked.

I think I was kind of seeing the strings too much during this, and it made it hard to engage in the story. As soon as there's a group of people lined up to fight him, and her in the background, all of us know he's going to beat all of them up, then fight her and they'll be matched. Everyone could have gone to the bathroom during that scene and been fine. I felt like that over and over again, too many predictable scenes.

(The other thing- when Hotshot and Love Interest are stranded during the mission, we know there's got to be some way that they have to get sent out, so there's the EMP thing, and their mech is immune to it. Okay, fine. But then, during the undersea attack, why don't the monsters use the EMP again? Just because for the climax, we needed all the robots. I just kept seeing examples of a lack of consistency to things, and I was just too aware that I was watching a movie and not a living, breathing sci-fi world. It was too hard to get lost in it.)

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#32
Quote:
Originally Posted by agracru View Post

My problem is where you fit all of that extra drift stuff in

But it's not your problem or my problem.  It's del Toro and Beacham's problem (whether they feel there's a problem, that is...)  They're the ones establishing the foundation for this stuff.  There are movies like The Fountain that can fit lots of stuff into its 90-something minute downtime.  When a filmmaker isn't making the most of 130 minutes (in terms of character and story, in this case... since del Toro is clearly making the most of the movie's runtime in other ways), I have relatively more beef.

Quote:
Originally Posted by agracru View Post

(And arguably a movie about people working together needs to have people actually work together. Drift space, as I said, is a plot device meant to emphasize the importance of human unity, but it's actually a bit of a cheat in that it completely overrides any need to have actors meaningfully interact with one another.

Love...I don't know, man. YMMV. I felt GDT's love for kaiju every which way, from the care taken to give them each a distinct aesthetic identity and vitality to the pure glee he shows in dissecting the kaiju and exploring their biology. (Not to mention the cheek of having characters walk right into a monster's womb without realizing it.)

Yet for all that Drifting (which ends up coming with a bunch of functional exposition anyway), the movie still has the perfunctory 'quiet moment' between the two pilots just sitting down and talking about their feelings.

As for love... I certainly feel GDT's love for the OH MY GOD SO COOL aspects in this movie.  That's undeniable.  But I guess I'm talking about a thematic love towards them.  As you said, there isn't much metaphor to this movie.  You gotta strain to find some.  And knowing the guy has a thing for movie monsters, I feel like there could've been more WUV.  I actually thought the kaiju could've used more visual variety.  As colorful as the film itself is, I wished the kaiju had a greater variety of color and design and been MORE distinct.

My favorite was the fat kaiju that moved like a gorilla.

Do I sound spoiled?  I think I sound spoiled.

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Originally Posted by Andy Bain View Post


Watching it with her probably enhanced MY enjoyment immeasurably.
Oh, no doubt.  But this line of logic results in a world where Paul Greengrass loves Shrek 3!!!  Hehehe
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#33

I'll let John Ford answer the EMP question: because then there would be no movie. Plus, only one monster had a biological EMP, and Raleigh and Mako splattered its guts all over the place.

And the reason Newton and Gottlieb mind-meld without figuring out compatibility first is because they don't have the option to. They're not Jaeger pilots, so they've never been in a position where that compatibility matters; with the world's fate hanging in the balance, they don't really have much of a choice. (Plus, the compatibility only really seems to matter insomuch as it determines how well the participants can pilot a Jaeger. Newton and Gottlieb don't need to be compatible for that purpose - they just need to drift together so that Newt doesn't kill himself by connecting with a kaiju. Different goals.)

I can understand the stick-fighting concern, but I think it makes sense. The point is to test instinct and behavior in combat, something a personality test can't really measure. Mako's compatible because she shares similar fighting instincts with Raleigh, which is why they're so evenly matched when they spar. The other combatants don't really stand much of a chance against Raleigh - they're weaker fighters, so they'd be more of a liability in his co-pilot chair. (So to speak.) But Mako approaches combat the same way Raleigh does, which is why they work as a team.

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#34

YOU DO NOT TRULY KNOW SOMEONE

UNTIL YOU FAI DEM!

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#35
Quote:
Originally Posted by agracru View Post

I'll let John Ford answer the EMP question: because then there would be no movie.

Right, but that being the answer reminded me that it's a movie, which is why it was so hard to be engaged.

If you don't want to establish that monsters use EMPs to deal with for the rest of the movie, find a more creative way to make the leads have to enter the fight after everyone else.

I feel like with the character story, they kept constantly picking the least creative choice to further the story, and the one thing I didn't expect from this movie was predictability. (My friends are making fun of me for this comment, because they say "It's a giant robot movie, it's supposed to be predictable!". But, my excitement was that Del Toro is a great storyteller, so I expected things to be elevated.)

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