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Blast of Confetti
Apr 21, 2008

by Jeffrey of YOSPOS

I really like this movie. I saw it on opening day after a few months of getting pumped for it. I was worried that I was starting to get too hyped for it only to be disappointed, sort of like what happened with Man of Steel, but the movie is so drat endearing that it's hard to want to be the guy that points out a plot hole or annoyance with the dialogue.

The first thing to understand with this movie is that the character plot exists here to get us from A to B. It's largely expository, so conversations generally boil down to, "This happened because of that." There's some comedic moments between characters, notably between Charlie from Always Sunny (hell if I know his name ) and Ron Perlman as Hannibal Chao. Characters generally act exactly how you would think they do and everyone does their part well enough. I could get offended that they cast Athletic White Guy #2031 as the protagonist, but this movie really isn't about him.

This movie is about gigantic robots beating the poo poo out of gigantic monsters. This is the first movie I've ever seen where I was waiting for the plot development segments to end so we could get back to the action because, man, I was grinning like an idiot the entire time. Everything moves with a sense of purpose and weight. I hate to compare this movie with Transformers, but it's really the only thing that you can compare it to with today's movies. While things sometimes devolved in to a blur, the explosions coming from the speakers made it obvious how colossally hard the jaeger just smashed a kaiju. The world these behemoths inhabit reacts to them, such as waves crashing outward with every single step taken. The environment is also used, rather than a place for fights to happen. The scene where Gipsy Danger uses a freighter boat as a katana was, as much as I hate to use this word, epic.

There's also a lot of little touches that add a spark of humanity. This movie takes place at the end of a fight for survival. Humanity has tried to create a wall to keep the kaiju out only to have to smashed to pieces. There's a real sense that this is the final fight. Yet, despite all the destruction, there's one scene that hits home that may be overlooked if you're not careful. When Gipsy Danger is hunting a kaiju through the streets of Hong Kong, it comes to a little bridge. Neither of the pilots recognize it or point it out. Gipsy Danger carefully steps over the bridge. It's not a slow thing, it's obviously a subconscious act. Even though they're piloting a 2,500 ton death machine, the pilots of the jaegers are aware that they're trying to save the world. Transformers would have just blown up the bridge because it would look cool.

This movie is a piece of art. No, it's not Citizen Kane, but this movie is a product of love. While obviously there's a lot of CGI, it's only used when necessary. Although Guillermo Del Toro could have shot all the actors in front of green screen, he created a four story tall cockpit and strapped the actors in so every punch, every lurch, every hit was turned in to real world movement. That this movie came out around the same time as Grown Ups 2 and people seriously consider Sandler's scam over this is almost an insult to the craft. If you like movies in even the vaguest sense of the word, go and see this on the biggest screen possible. Show Hollywood that you would rather have this than another "comedy" starring a bunch of 40 year old SNL flunkies.

5/5 You can easily pick this movie apart, but at the end of the day, it's about giant robots punching the bad guys and this movie most certainly delivers on that.


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