Pacific Rim Uprising’s fatal flaw
Can the new team of directors and actors live up to the first blockbuster?
Pacific Rim (2013) is a total guilty pleasure. Giant robots fighting giant monsters? Sign me up. The film released in 2013, and directed by Guillermo del Toro was instantly polarizing. You either loved it, or you hated. I was in the former. When the news of the sequel floated around, I couldn’t wait. Furthermore, the fact that Del Toro had signed on to the project gave me hope that the second was going to live up to the first.
Yesterday (10/5/17), Universal Films dropped it’s first pieces of PR for Pacific Rim Uprising. I have bad news. The diagnosis is fatal. They are forcing a young, 15 year old hacker into the script. Yep. Robocop 3 syndrome all over. [Editors note: With the success of Saturday morning cartoons and in an attempt to cash in, the third of the Robocop films drastically toned down the violence and added a young sidekick for Robocop. The results were nothing short of a disaster.] Guess what guys, your annoying punk ass little brother is coming along for the ride this time and there is nothing you can do about it.
The press release reads:
Jake (John Boyega) is joined by gifted rival pilot Lambert (The Fate of the Furious’ Scott Eastwood) and 15-year-old Jaeger hacker Amara (newcomer Cailee Spaeny), as the heroes of the PPDC become the only family he has left.
This may not kill the film entirely. Recently, in LOGAN, Dafne Keen was a pivotal and bad ass part of the Wolverine franchise. However, she had Hugh Jackman and an academy award worthy performance of Sir Patrick Stewart to back her up. That’s the equivalent of former President Clinton playing saxophone with the Miles Davis quintet. They could make anyone sound good. Also, Del Toro has worked with many young actors before and the results always seem to turn out good.
But Del Toro isn’t directing this one. (gulp) It is directed by Steven S. DeKnight of Netflix’s Daredevil, STARZ’s Spartacus fame. One can hope that DeKnight knows how to handle the teenage sidekick role deftly and not leaving the hard corp fanbase groaning in the aisles.
Anyone remember how satisfying it was to watch the character Mouse get killed off in the Matrix? He was young. He was annoying. He got blown away early in the film and the franchise.
The good news is this; There is time to fix this problem and still make Pacific Rim Uprising a worthy sequel to the original. Although the story lines were mostly tied up at the end of the first, there was still a cliff hanger here and there. Fans of Hellboy and Ron Perlman know what I’m talking about. Here’s to hoping the the epic action film of Jaegers vs. Kaiju will be just as good as the first…. or even better.