Review by Lucía Santiago Dantés.
Evangelion meets Robotech meets The host…. and on the way let’s all just pay a homage to Godzilla, just for the fun of it!
I must confess I hated the very first 15 minutes of the movie. There were too many Evangelion and Robotech references there. For a good Otaku sometimes that’s infuriating. But after the 25 minutes I just have take my hat off for Guillermo Del Toro and writer Travis Beachman… Del Toro – Beachman team make it work the script and the movie thanks to the fact that they succesfully appropiate the blend of stories and make them their own. Even though Del Toro and Beachman avoid by all means the hated comparisons but the truth is undeniable. This is a blatant ripoff of the stories mentioned above.
For those who doesn’t know the plot the japanese anime Neon Genesis Evangelion(1994) You need to know it’s an apocalyptic Mecha anime. You will find out it’s way to similar to Pacific Rim: in the near future a series of monstrous being to attack Earth. They destroy cities and the damage is too much to count. In order to save the Earth, an organization called SEELE experiment and succeeds on creating giant cyborgs who can be piloted by children. Pilot and giant cyborg are synched and they represent the last hope humanity, to save their world. There are too many casualties in the story and even the aliens look way too silmilar. There’s also the fact that the pilot and cyborg are also controlled from a base that looks to similar to Pacific Rim where the staff also measure the level of synchronicity and also the characters have similar issues about their past.
Pacific Rim also takes some influences out of Robotech too: an alien starship crashed in the South Pacific Island and the military organization U.N. Spacy reverse engineers the technology creating giant mechas who can fight the alien invasion that follows.
The Host (2006) is a South Korean film directed by Bong Joon Ho that became a blockbuster. The story is about the military droping a liquid into the sea. Years later a strange monstrous amphibious comes out of the Han River attacking people.
Pacific Rim follows the same storyline. An alien invasion coming directly from a Deep Sea interdimensional portal deep under the sea of the Pacific ocean. The gigantic aliens are called Kaijus. They attack nearby the sea cities around the world, leading to devastating consequences. Nations of the Pacific Rim unite to create mechas called Jaegers they’re big to match the size of the Kaijus and controlled by 2 pilots who had to be synched in between them and the Jaeger. Unfortunately the Kaijus are winning the battle as they’re coming in more often intervals with serious consequences to the cities they attack.
The twist of the story is instead of one, you have 2 pilots to synch with the robot. These pilots have to have a certain level of compatibility such as brothers, father and son or even couples. Such as Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam) and Yancy Becket (Diego Klattenhoff) when Yancy gets killed during a battle, Raleigh retires. Years later the Jaeger project is discontinued for several reasons like the high cost to make them and maintain the program versus building a huge wall to stop the alien invasion. When this wall proves to be useless the last team of Jaegers are gathered for one final battle.
With the help of Dr. Hermann Gottlieb (Burn Gorman) a theoretical scientist and a biologist investigator Dr. Newton Geiszler (Charlie Day) the team finds out the aliens are a race of clones sent by aliens in order to take the earth. (just like in Robotech where there’s a race of aliens called “The Masters” with the power to create beings in order to invade and fight other worlds… and so in that story line the aliens humanity is fighting are just a race of clones sent by the masters, just like in Pacific Rim)
As I said before, although the story takes a lot from japanese animation story line we should see this as the Hollywood/Occidental response to such cult anime classics that are so profitable among otakus and geeks around the world (including myself). ^.^