I love Guillermo del Toro. I really do. But when I saw the trailer for his upcoming monster-pocalypse flick, Pacific Rim (in theaters July 12, 2013), all I could do is shake my head and ask, “Why hast thou forsaken me, Guillermo del Toro?”
The tale of monsters who rise up from the ocean to destroy our measly little planet, the trailer for Pacific Rim is filled with quickly cut scenes of action, action, ACTION, accompanied by a hackneyed ragged voiceover. It feels closer to one of the bombastic late-1990s Roland Emmerich flicks (cough Independence Day cough) or, to be kind, mid-period James Cameron than it does to the subtle work of the indie filmmaking darling who brought us gems like Cronos, Pan’s Labyrinth and The Devil’s Backbone.
Of course, del Toro also gave us Mimic and Blade II, both of which have their fans to be sure. I mention them just to remind myself that although del Toro is capable of giving us nuanced sumptuous visual feasts, he can also churn out the occasional dumb, loud sumptuous visual feast…which is what Pacific Rim looks to be.
Wait a sec, Pacific Rim kind of resembles a Transformers flick too. So let’s think about it like this: If you want to see a dumb Michael Bay movie made by a smart filmmaker, check out Pacific Rim. Now that I think about it, a smart Transformers flick doesn’t sound so bad. I mean, that’s what we were all hoping for with the original Transformers, right? Okay, del Toro, you got a pass…this time.