Pacific Rim: Uprising (2018) Review

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Pacific Rim: Uprising is about Jake Pentecost (John Boyega) who has to live up to his father’s name after sacrificing himself to save the world from the alien monsters known as the Kaiju. To do this he must pick himself up from a troubled past, become a leader to the new cadets and look cool while doing it in his giant armored robot, Jaeger.

It’s difficult to pinpoint where this franchise went wrong. Hm… How about the making a sequel part? Let’s face it, Pacific Rim wasn’t a good film, however, the world building and mythology crafted were interesting enough to garner a sequel. What we got was sort of disappointing. “Sort of”? Well, the first trailer itself was a pretty big red flag which abandoned any of the inventiveness of the franchise for the generic action blockbuster vibes people are so sick of. Then I sat down to watch the film and was pleasantly surprised looking forward to what’ll happen next. Sadly, the movie early on hits a certain point where it all starts to slowly fall apart, the returning characters.

Every time the plot tried to tie itself back to its older roots, we’d get shallow writing, especially dialogue and other character interactions. In fact, most of the characterization takes a break. We end up with the majority of the good guys suffering so much that the Jaegers they controlled ended up having more personality than them. Don’t get me started on the villain who is so far the worst aspect which ties itself to the previous criticism of mine. Where the movie saves itself, though, is its main two characters who proffer the viewer something they can attach themselves to, granted that eventually befalls. The action was surprisingly not as exciting as you’d expect from such established potential, the visuals are stunning yet the Kaijus designs feel inferior to the ones from the original plus, it’s not like you get to enjoy any of the grandiose monster shots since much of the editing in the entirety is rushed and barely lets you focus on anything. The cherry on top is the halfway stiched up ending.

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Pacific Rim: Uprising holds some charming elements nevertheless the terrible villain, undeveloped heroes, uninspired writing and jumpy editing give me all the reasons to not recommend anyone to sit down and watch it unless they adore the universe. The tonal shift from the predecessor at first offers a number of positives, but in the end, I am left with a feeling, that the continuation of the franchise would’ve been better if it was a lavishly animated cartoon.

2.5/5

I honestly would be excited if the franchise was made into a cartoon.

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