In the last few years Kaiju/Giant Monsters are getting their place back in the spotlight. Even in Japan Godzilla’s last film Godzilla: Final Wars until Shin Godzilla came around, was in 2004. Ofcourse there were other monsters like Peter Jackon’s King Kong in 2005, Korean monster movie The Host in 2006 and Cloverfield in 2008. But in the public eye they were replaced with Transformers and Superheroes. Until 2013 when Guillermo del Toro made Pacific Rim, a homage to the monsters and directors/creators of yester year.
Giant Monsters & Robots
I loved Pacific Rim, it combined two of my favourite genres: giant monsters and mechas/robots. As a kid I grew up with Transformers and Robotech, and as a teenager I started to love the King of Monsters. I love them so much our cat is even named Monster. So when Godzilla came out in 2014 I made sure I got tickets tot he first showing possibly. On a Thursday afternoon I saw Godzilla for the first time on the big screen.
That brings us back to present day. I tried to see every Kaiju movie I could. Unfortunately I had to see Shin Godzilla on Blu-ray, but I made sure to see Kong: Skull Island in cinemas in 2017. Netflix gave me a treat as well in Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters.
Rampage will also be coming out this year, with three animals mutated to be Giant Monsters, based on the videogame. King Kong will meet Godzilla in 2020; it’s a great time to love them. Thanks to fantasize.nl me and my boyfriend got free tickets to see Pacific Rim Uprising.
Peace at last
Ten years after sealing the breach in the first movie, former Jager pilot Jake Pentecost (John Boyega) makes a living by stealing and selling Jaeger parts on the black market. Jake is the son of the Kaiju war hero Stacker Pentecost. One night during a scavenge hunt he tracks down a powercore of a disabled Jaeger to a secret workshop of a teenager. Her name is Amara Namani and she manged to build her own Jaeger.
They get caught. Jake is sent back to The Pan Pacific Defense Corps as an instructor instead of going to jail. Amara is forced to enlist as well. After a mysterious Jaeger appears during a PPDC meeting to decide if they will use drone Jaegers instead of piloted ones. It’s up Jake and his estranged co-pilot Nate Lambert to find out what’s going on.
I’m biased towards Pacific Rim: Uprising and it’s genre. But I will give an honest opinion. The reviews have been mixed. The movie has a 45% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and an average rating of 5 out of 10. Some call it bland and others applaud it’s fun filled ride. Del Toro didn’t direct Uprising, but Steven S. DeKnight did. It’s his directorial debut, while Del Toro is a producer. And one of the writers is T.S. Nowlin, who also writes for the Monsterverse of Legendary Entertainment. I hope we get some kind of crossover with Godzilla/King Kong and the Jaegers some day.
For me the positives were:
- John Boyega delivers a great performance and he has great chemistry with Scott Eastwood.
- The movie doesn’t take itself too serious, with some winks here and there
- Giant Robots battling Giant Monsters
And the negatives were:
- The plot is all over the place. They tried to make a coherent story, but writing the synopsis was hard because of all the plot lines.
- There are tedious moments and the plot drags at certain times.
- There are sooo many cliches, including a montage. This makes it hard to take certain things serious
If you are like me and love this kind of movie, I would say go watch it while you can. For other people I think this is a pass, it’s still a niche thing.
The movie hasn’t reached break even point at this time, so I don’t think there will be any direct sequels. I would love for the Jaegers to show up in either a Godzilla or King Kong movie though.