So Grumpy Geek Bryan Huang favours Star Trek Into Darkness, while Head Geek Nicholas Yong continues his love affair with Jennifer Lawrence by choosing The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Now here’s my pick for one of the best geek movies of 2013 – Pacific Rim.
If watching giant robots beating the gooey snot out of monsters is wrong, then I reject the values system you grew up with. Directed by Guillermo del Toro, a self-confessed mega-fanboy himself, Pacific Rim came out earlier this year to a fair bit of geek hype.
While it didn’t do all that well at the box office (a damn shame and a half), what still holds up is its pure, undiluted delivery of a 10-year-old boy’s fantasy movie.
In this age of the mega-blockbuster trying to squeeze too much in to cater to test audiences, there’s a lot to be said about the gleefully campy, scene-chewing dialogue, names completely unrooted in reality (STACKER PENTECOST bears repeating again and again), and complete lack of shame at what it is – a fun romp.
That’s what I enjoyed most about Pacific Rim – how it didn’t pretend to be anything more than what it was. After the briefest introductions to the universe (Kaiju invade, humans build Jaegers to fight them, explaining the drift), the movie wastes no time in delivering one of the most action-packed blockbusters in recent memory.
The visuals are porn for someone who grew up on Transformers and Battletech – every detail in the Jaegers and Kaiju look like they make complete sense, and the sheer sense of scale is impressive. All that is also set to a fist-pumping ‘hell yeah’ soundtrack that I’ve been playing over and over, even half a year later.
Sure, we could talk about plot holes (why didn’t they use that sword earlier?) and Charlie Hunnam’s questionable accent. But focusing on those things are missing the forest for the trees – and why Pacific Rim is more important than you thought it was.
In an industry filled with sequels like The Hunger Games and remakes like Star Trek (sorry, Nick and Bryan), Pacific Rim stands out as that rarest of things – an original property.
I could wax lyrical about Pacific Rim’s action, visuals and campy fun all day long, but it’s the promise of a whole new story universe to explore, with all the inherent rules and ideas to obsess over.
It’s this sense of discovery, that boldly goes where few others have tread that makes Pacific Rim my geek movie of 2013. You can check out our full review of the movie here.