I loved the first Pacific Rim, so I was hyped for this movie. And I was not as disappointed as I expected to be.
The movie has a lot of plot, so much that it consumes everything else. The depth of the characters, the emotional side of the story, the consistency of world-building, even the variety of enemies to kill suffer from the plot simply having too many plot points to go through. The cast is mostly alright… okay, it’s not bad, but it’s also not nearly as good as it was in the original. The cinematography is very good, but not as great as one would expect from this type of movie. Some scenes are kind of messy, lots of them have unnecessary distracting elements and overall, it actually feels worse than in the first movie. The action follows suit, it’s fast, fun, but not too satisfying.
Overall, I give this movie 4,68 / 10.
— Spoiler Alert —
Alright, so what went wrong? The movie has a good story, no doubts about that, but it actually goes through so many plot points, that it doesn’t have time to develop anything substantial. In the end, I barely remember any of the character’s names, because they ended up being so generic and two-dimensional, that they are just forgettable. This movie is an amazing proof of how important it is for action to involve three-dimensional characters because otherwise, it simply falls flat. There is a lesson I took from this movie though, the lesson that you can, in fact, have too much plot and that sacrificing characterization for the plot is probably a bad idea.
On a side note, this movie strengthens my feeling that an actor’s performance is actually more dependent on the script than his own skills. I absolutely hated John Boyega as Finn in Star Wars (both eps. 7 and 8), but here he was excellent and the highlight of the whole movie. When I add to it Daisy Ridley, who was great in The Orient Express but feels like a lifeless lump of flesh as Rey, it further cements this feeling within me. When working with mathematical models, there’s a popular phrase “garbage in, garbage out”, which seemingly holds with acting as well, at least partially – there is only so much a good actor can do when the script for his character is garbage.