Giant aliens plus robots equals fun
Pacific Rim. Starring Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi. Directed by Guillermo del Toro
When the alien invasion happens, in the relatively near future, it doesn't come from outer space. Instead, it comes from deep under the Pacific, through a rift in space and time.
What comes out of that rift is the stuff of nightmares.
The Kaiju, as they're named, are impossibly gigantic aliens, and nearly impossible to defeat until humankind creates equally giant robots - the Jaegars. The robots are piloted by two people who have to get into each other's heads in order to move the massive machines.
Well, that's it. That's the plot. Giant sea monster aliens versus giant human-made robots.
And it's so much FUN.
Pacific Rim is a popcorn movie in the absolute truest sense of the word. Its scale is massive, the humans (in particular, for my money, Charlie Hunnam and Idris Elba) are pretty, and the bad guys are about as bad as you can get.
The story is moved along by the humans who control the giant robots, and who offer the world's last line of defence against the monsters.
It does take a couple of strange turns, which is saying something, given what Pacific Rim is essentially about, but it never lingers for long without rushing off to kick some giant sea-dwelling alien butt.
Charlie Hunnam is centre stage as action man, and he does a pretty good job, and I'm forever a fan of gratuitous shirtlessness, which he also provides.
Idris Elba's character is the man in charge of the Jaegar programme and he's as stoic as you'd expect, while also being a butt-kicker. It truly is good, clean(ish) popcorny fun and there just aren't enough movies like it.
The Southland Times