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What's with the name?

Allow us to explain.

Rinko Kikuchi

Essay

Pacific Rim Is Not Your Average Action Juggernaut

The dismal state of this summer’s blockbusters is multidimensional: not only did big-budget films generally perform poorly, but they also were conceptually and emotionally hollow. The Lone Ranger didn’t seem to understand why Johnny Depp in redface could possibly be a bad thing, and the failure of the Smith-Smith-fronted After Earth to draw in crowds boggled the minds of film studios everywhere. When the promising prospect of Elysium turned out to be a moralistic bull in a china shop, the summer sci-fi set seemed doomed.

Is there anything to salvage from this black hole of summer cinema? I think there is: Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim, which stands out from the crowd of half-baked action/sci-fi juggernauts for one reason: it knows what it is. It knows that it’s a visually-amazing action flick– but what’s even more interesting is that it knows how to subvert pieces of the genre other films blindly pay homage to. In particular, Pacific Rim has a way of smashing gender-based action movie tropes like they’re Kaiju skulls.

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Awwwwww

Guillermo del Toro Geeks Out Over Gundam In Japan, and Everyone Geeks Out Over Guillermo del Toro [VIDEO]

Pacific Rim wouldn’t exist without the nerdy enthusiasm of director Guillermo del Toro, and now that the movie has finally opened in Japan, we can watch footage of del Toro visiting the birthplace of the Kaiju and Gundam that inspired the film. This clip of del Toro, and the two Mako Mori’s of the film, Rinko Kikuchi, and Ashida Mana, walking around Odiaba, Japan is adorable, from the ice cream del Toro buys for the three of them, to the television host who has a fanboy moment over del Toro, to the director’s reaction when he encounters a giant Gundam in real life. Giant robots abound, and dreams come true for all.

Previously in Guillermo del Toro

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Review

At Pacific Rim’s Giant Mechanical Core, a Human Heart

To make effective monsters, you need someone who knows monsters. Guillermo del Toro, best known as the director of the Hellboy movies, and Pan’s Labyrinth, is a man well versed in genre flicks and the many pitfalls one tends to run into there. So it is by this knowledge, and not a little fan appreciation for those genres, that his latest film, Pacific Rim, is pulled off with nary a hitch. This giant robot-and-monsters clash of titans is much more than the sum of its mechanical parts, offering up a feast of worldbuilding details alongside a thrilling piece of action-adventure storytelling. More than that, Pacific Rim knows what kind of film it is, and sticks to tone with a consistency that could teach the lumbering beasts around it a thing or two.

Mild spoilers abound, none kaiju-sized.

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And All Was Right With the World

Guillermo del Toro Talks About Pacific Rim’s Formidable Female Lead And The Lack of a Love Story

“I was very careful how I built the movie. One of the other things I decided was that I wanted a female lead (Babel’s Rinko Kikuchi) who has the equal force as the male leads. She’s not going to be a sex kitten, she’s not going to come out in cutoff shorts and a tank top, and it’s going to be a real earnestly drawn character…One of the decisions we made as we went along in the process of the movie was, let’s not have a love story. Let’s have a story about two people.” Director Guillermo del Toro on how Pacific Rim deviates from typical summer blockbusters, and how Mako Mori, played by Rinko Kikuchi, will be a formidable, complex character.

Pacific Rim continues to be compared to blockbusters like Transformers, but, if the focus on characters in the most recent commercials wasn’t evidence enough, Guillermo del Toro has set the record strait in his interview with The Star.  Pacific Rim is not a movie set to exploit its female lead or compromise her character any more than it will its male lead, and del Toro stresses that he made decisions at every turn to make sure his Kaiju versus Mecha movie didn’t become just another summer movie. It’s looking more and more like Pacific Rim will focus on adventure and interesting characters, without falling into the glorification of violence and two-dimensional characters that movies like Transformers lead us to expect in our giant-robot-filled summer films. Finally we can watch giant monsters fight Mecha and watch an interesting story unfold!

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Almost Totally Excellent

New Pacific Rim Featurette Tells Us About The Characters Behind the Mecha


Watch Guillermo del Toro talk about how he grounded and humanized his kaiju v.s. mecha movie, and learn more about the characters played by Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, and Charlie Hunnam in this new featurette for Pacific Rim. After all, if anyone can give heart to two of the most over-the-top types of sci-fi films, it’s Guillermo del Toro. In case you thought you were just imagining things, that is in fact GLaDOS at about 1:20.

(via Collider)

Previously in Pacific Rim

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Assuming Direct Control

New Pacific Rim Images Make Cancelling the Apocalypse Look Like a Good Idea

…good thing Idris Elba‘s on that.

I’m getting real sick of winter, guys. There are no good holidays left (Valentine’s Day doesn’t count) and it doesn’t seem like it’ll ever get warm. Also we have five more months to wait until Guillermo del Toro‘s Pacific Rim comes out. Can I just cryogenically freeze myself and wake up when the summer movies get here? No? Dang. I guess these new pictures (Mecha! Panicking civilians! Charlie Hunnam and Rinko Kikuchi!) will have to tide me over.

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Things We Saw Today

Things We Saw Today: Captain America Wearing A Belly Shirt

Someone did an awesome job photoshopping Community’s Alison Brie as Captain America. What they failed to realize was she would have looked equally cool with her sensitive stomach region protected. (via ScreenRant)

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Things We Saw Today

Things We Saw Today: The Official Sweater-Knitting Peripheral for the NES

Oh, you thought I was joking. (Kotaku)

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