A race of hostile aliens are sending gigantic creatures through a dimensional rift to terrorise the people of Earth, prompting the world’s military to create giant robotic fighting machines to combat the threat.
The premise of Pacific Rim sounds like the usual Michael Bay-style Hollywood drivel, but I have long been a fan of Guillermo Del Toro’s work and so expected something altogether darker in tone and more intelligent than the usual fare. Disappointingly, I was wrong. Quite why he got involved in this project I’m not sure, but this film ticks every box of the bone-headed blockbuster and no more. True, Del Toro’s keen eye for visual splendour is evident during the spectacular CGI robot versus Godzilla style smackdowns and during these sequences my inner small boy couldn’t help being swept up in the post-Toho carnage. But the rest of the film is nothing more than the usual underdog-comes-good sports movie cliches peppered with Americanised Gung Ho machismo. The characters are all tired stereotypes, the dialogue pitiful and the plot recycled from Independence Day -including the painfully corny speech delivered to cringe-making effect by Idris Elba.
If it had included the tongue in cheek humour of ID4 or the subversive, knowing wit of Starship Troopers it could have worked, but as it stands it’s a painfully predictable jar-headed toy advert that is perhaps worth watching once for the SFX, but as a piece of drama is sorely lacking.