When monstrous creatures, known as Kaiju, started rising from the sea, a war began that would take millions of lives and consume humanity's resources for years on end. To combat the giant Kaiju, a special type of weapon was devised: massive robots, called Jaegers, which are controlled simultaneously by two pilots whose minds are locked in a neural bridge. But even the Jaegers are proving nearly defenseless in the face of the relentless Kaiju. On the verge of defeat, the forces defending mankind have no choice but to turn to two unlikely heroes - a washed up former pilot and an untested trainee - who are teamed to drive a legendary but seemingly obsolete Jaeger from the past. Together, they stand as mankind's last hope against the mounting apocalypse.
Directed by: Guillermo del Toro
. Starring: Charlie Hunnam
, Diego Klattenhoff
, Idris Elba
, Rinko Kikuchi
, Charlie Day
, Burn Gorman
, Max Martini
, Robert Kazinsky
, Clifton Collins Jr.
, Ron Perlman
, Brad William Henke
, Larry Joe Campbell
, Mana Ashida
. Music by: Ramin Djawadi
Going in with this expectation, you will not be disappointed, but if you think you will have an awe inspiring experience you might have a bad time. I just seen it in IMAX and I have to say that half of the time I couldn't tell what's going on during the fight sequences. I'm not the only one here complaining about this. It is clearly an editing defect and also a color grading defect since everything is too dark during the fights. I do not understand this new trend by splitting the movie in very long and stale sequences and then cut to endless fighting scenes which strain the eye and over-saturates the senses. Just intertwine them up into a more coherent story driven film. It is not rocket science. It's editing 101.
The acting was exactly what you would expect from a robots vs monsters film. Nothing more nothing less; cardboard cutouts, stereotypical, without any arcs. There is only one female role (except few others extras) in the whole film which is totally out of balance with the social dynamic created within the narrative.
The music is good and it works. It is funny that "works" today turned into a compliment though. It does a good job of embracing brutal fighting sequences and it also works on squeezing out that much needed gram of emotion. It feels really nice to hear thematic and fleshed out melodic material making a comeback in a world where soundtracks have become mostly sound design.
CGI is well... CGI. The monsters sometimes look silly, not menacing enough and the giant robots seem very fragile and clunky. I know this is a form of a tribute to the golden age of cinematography where giant monsters were some guys dressed up in rubber suits walking around a set made out of cardboard, but a tribute should be a short and clear statement, not an entire two hours film. In my opinion, CGI should complement and augment good acting, good story telling, good character development, not to be the sole reason for the existence of a film. Yes, this is a robots vs monsters movie, but that doesn't justify disregarding the very foundation that makes up a cinematic experience. Popcorn and all, i saw at least three opportunities for the story to take an alternate route to a more complex and fulfilling end scenario.
Like any other of my fellow sci-fi enthusiast, I can suspend my disbelief. I can even stretch it pretty far. But I cannot in good faith support the stupidity needed for a story to exist. Darwin winning prize minds thought it was better to build giant robots that work via an incredibly complicated and unexplainable mind meld of two people instead of arming strategic nuclear devices on the bottom of the Pacific and detonating them whenever one of the monsters emerge. I have games where I can operate giant robots using my keyboard and mouse only. There are surgeons who in extremely difficult operations are using robots that are capable of performing incredible and accurate tasks. There are guns today that can inflict unimaginable chaos and destruction on almost any kind of earthly scale. Yet in this film, we need giant clunky robots that perform ninja-like actions to wrestle and beat the monsters to a pulp, piloted by some people that are somehow compatible to mind meld in a black magic driven process. And let's put them right in the middle of the action, because you know, remote control is too futuristic. We see steel penetrating the monster's skin while F22 rockets are barely effective against it, because again, there's nothing better than a knife at a gunfight. This is Occam's razor violation at its finest. You want to justify giant robots fighting giant beasts? Then please make it so in a way not to sound so abysmal when the whole script is laid out on the table.
Comic relief is a poor attempt to say the least. The only two "bright minds" available in the whole world act like Laurel and Hardy all throughout the film, reaching idiotic and blatantly obvious conclusions. They are nothing more than embarrassments for the scientific community and they are the perfect portrayal for how this movie treats its science.
The film has its few moments to shine, but that's about it. They do not add up to something more. The story is too simple and it's told in an amateur way. Acting is bad not because actors fail to deliver a good performance, but because there is no performance for them to give. Directing is not good; fighting scenes are too pampered becoming over-saturated, and in other scenes it is almost absent. Music is the only redeemable quality of this title that I quite enjoyed. This is a high-budget triple A popcorn flick, but for me personally this film was a let-down. After all that hype and attention it received in media, I hoped at least that at the end of it I will get that smile, that u-mph that says "Ok, this was a decent summer flick", but alas, it did not happen.
Even if you have low expectations like I had, you still might not enjoy this title, therefore I would recommend you not to go and see it, because you would only feed the hungry money making Hollywood machine and right now they need to realize that spewing out half baked films like this will not help them for the future. But that again what do I know? I'm just another random ticket-payer movie-goer, who wrote another review in a sea of endless reviews that are disregarded completely by the film industry.
Review by MisterHOH from the Internet Movie Database.