Pacific Rim may not be del Toro’s best work, but you can’t help but admire the unabashed enthusiasm of it. Like a little kid with a $100 million budget to make a film about giant monsters fighting giant robots, del Toro goes over-the-top all the way from beginning to end, and if you put your brain in a jar, it’s just a ton of fun. It also doesn’t hurt he named the robots Jaegers, which happens to be MY name, so the sheer auditory rush of 30% of the lines of dialogue in this film is a very personal, very 10-year-old gone mad kind of glee.
The best parts of the film are-wait for it-the fights between giant monsters and giant Jaegers. My favorite fight is the return to action for the hero robot: Gipsy Rose as it takes on the Kaiju nicknamed “Leatherback”. Any fight where things the size of skyscrapers are pummeling each other with cargo containers is something that is just fundamentally RIGHT. The film is also notable for containing perhaps my favorite character name of all time: Idris Elba’s Stacker Pentecost. That character’s son (played by John Boyega) will star in the film’s sequel, which has-dare I say-Jaeger sized boots to fill? RISE JAEGERS RISE!