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PACIFIC RIM 
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
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Hi MGamesCook,

Do you mean visually progressive? Or more in the vein of the traditional notion of the philosophical branch dealing with fine arts?

If visually, you mean something like TRON: Legacy? Or what was that one film that came out years ago that had this "water color / oversaturated" look dealing with the afterlife? I forgot...


Visually progressive. And narratively, rhythmically. New ways of telling a story. Or just new stories. New ways to think about what makes a movie good or bad. I could never judge a movie based solely on the way it affects an audience. That's just not what a movie is to me.


Sun Jul 21, 2013 12:48 am
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
MGamesCook wrote:
Quote:
Hi MGamesCook,

Do you mean visually progressive? Or more in the vein of the traditional notion of the philosophical branch dealing with fine arts?

If visually, you mean something like TRON: Legacy? Or what was that one film that came out years ago that had this "water color / oversaturated" look dealing with the afterlife? I forgot...


Visually progressive. And narratively, rhythmically. New ways of telling a story. Or just new stories. New ways to think about what makes a movie good or bad. I could never judge a movie based solely on the way it affects an audience. That's just not what a movie is to me.


Excuse me if I'm misreading you here but, aren't you part of the audience (as would be any other critic)? Therefore... I have to ask if what a movie is to you has nothing to do with how it affected you, how then would you evalute it?

And I agree with you to an extent, I don't think films should be judged by popular opinion but there's also a line where I am not so willing to just throw out my own reactions and try and appeal to some outside quantity to develope my own opinoin.

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Sun Jul 21, 2013 10:39 am
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
I hate to be a downer, but I really didn't like Pacific Rim that much. The characters (other than Idris Elba, who's pretty awesome no matter what he's in) were kind of cardboard and for whatever reason the plot just didn't draw me in. Examples: The hero didn't have much charisma. At all. The relationship between the dad and his son seemed forced and artificial; they wanted the deal at the end to be this big emotional moment but it just wasn't. The female hero just mooned around after the male hero the whole time and there was no real development of their relationship or any real reason to believe that they had the sort of connection that was supposed to make them such great robot drivers.

The movie was really loud and a lot of the action scenes were pretty dimly lit and very long, which may be why I found them to be pretty tedious and actually kind of boring.

A good movie can create tension and drama even when you know what the result has to be, but Pacific Rim didn't seem capable of doing that. I didn't for one second believe that our heroes were in any real danger or that they weren't going to be able to close the rift. A good film can make you forget that and/or put secondary characters you've grown to care about in enough legitimate danger to create tension. Pacific Rim didn't.

I can definitely see why it's not doing well at the box office. I had high hopes for this movie but found it to be really underwhelming. As always, YMMV.


Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:59 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
What it comes down to is that I just don't think a director should ever acknowledge or admit the silliness of his/her material, even if it's the most over the top popcorn imaginable. A director owes it to the viewer to present ridiculous material with a completely straight, deadpan face, even insofar as to get arty with it. Taking the material seriously, if only for the 90 minutes you're watching it, is a major part of the fun. I can't have fun with the idea that Goldfinger and Oddjob might exist if the actors don't take their existence seriously in the first place. Afterwards, I can joke about how silly it is, but while I'm watching I have to be able to suspend enough disbelief to actually be in suspense that Bond might get his nuts zapped off by the laser. Even Roger Moore, silly though he often was, knew how and when to convey a believable sense of fear and danger. As Scorsese states in his four hour documentary, a filmmaker has to be just as much illusionist as he is storyteller. Illusionist as opposed to Entertainer. Huge difference.

The essential friction between silly material and a serious tone is what I love about movies. It's like a staring contest with the director. If the director laughs first, it's a bad movie. If the viewer laughs first, it's a good movie. Sometimes this will involve creating an artsy vibe for the movie even when the material is not artsy. But the most important thing is that the actors play it straight. I may not believe that Bond is actually in danger, but I have to believe that he believes it. If the actor buys it, and the director shoots it in a manner that suggests he/she buys it, then I too can accept it in the moment. Bond or Liam Neeson or Superman or whoever has to think that they are in deep conflict, and I enjoy watching them think it. Same way I'm amused by a dog who believes his nose has caught a whiff of something really important.

In certain recent blockbusters, I've noticed a tendency to be all too transparent about trying to have a good time. The actors and directors don't believe in what they're doing because it's all just for fun anyway. It's true that it's often all just for fun, but the essential part of that fun is that the actors and director take it seriously. That's the key thing for me. So as addendum to my previous post, I would say that a director should indeed be aware of how he is affecting an audience. But he has to pretend like he's not.


Sun Jul 21, 2013 3:55 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
The poor characterisation and dialogue ruined this for me. So many clichés.

The male characters were all macho morons, except for the idiotic scientists.

The "tough" female character was still just a foil for the male characters.

Far too many forced setups and payoffs. E.g. Pentecost denies Mako only so he can "movingly" change his mind later.


Mon Jul 22, 2013 5:49 am
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
MGamesCook wrote:
What it comes down to is that I just don't think a director should ever acknowledge or admit the silliness of his/her material, even if it's the most over the top popcorn imaginable. A director owes it to the viewer to present ridiculous material with a completely straight, deadpan face, even insofar as to get arty with it. Taking the material seriously, if only for the 90 minutes you're watching it, is a major part of the fun.


Hi MGamesCook,

Ah I see. So what do you think of parody or satire films? or just wacky comedies? The Princess Bride, Austin Powers, This Is Spinal Tap, Monty Python, etc.?

But I totally get you on what you're saying in more straightforward fare: I remember the first time watching George Lucas' Star Wars Episode 1 (shudder)... and as much as I like Liam Neeson in various movies, in that one, while they were "underwater" speeding along, all the actors clearly had no fear (or emotion at all), as they were being chased on the green screen by CG underwater monsters (the actors were like mannequins with no expression). Totally blew the scene for me.


Last edited by moviefan_ek on Mon Jul 22, 2013 6:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:05 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
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If audiences like it, and I think they will, it will do strong repeat business. It's rare but not unheard of to have a movie drop only slightly from one week to the next and keep on chugging for a while. That's what word-of-mouth does.


The 57% drop this weekend suggests poor word of mouth. 52% for Grown Ups 2, 43% for Despicable Me 2.

I think the gender breakdown on PR's 1st weekend showed it had limited appeal beyond Del Toro fanboys(60% Male, 40% Female. you don't get break out hits with that kind of gender disparity. Everyone rags on Transformers here, saying only teenage boys went to see it, but it had a 50/50 split as far as gender.
The Conjuring & Grown Ups 2 had 53% female audience, its key to get that audience in)


Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:13 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
As a longtime anime viewer, I'm perhaps the target audience. I went into this film with no preconception other watching giant robots beating up giant monsters. It is aimed squarely at the 7 year old in me, and the 7 year old in me and the 43 year old me now very much enjoy this glorious piece of film making.


Mon Jul 22, 2013 4:09 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
Just saw it today, and really enjoyed it. Sort of light when it comes to the memory, but not bad for what it was.

Oh, and James, there's a problem with the sidebar on the review I caught by sheer chance when scrolling through: The Theatrical Aspect Ratio is listed as "2.35:1", and I think it's 1.78/1.85.

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Wed Jul 24, 2013 4:51 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
Wooooohoooooooooooo! Thus coming weekend, I am finally going to be able to see this! I am giddy as a schoolboy!!! :D


Thu Jul 25, 2013 9:18 am
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
Quote:
So what do you think of parody or satire films? or just wacky comedies? The Princess Bride, Austin Powers, This Is Spinal Tap, Monty Python, etc.?


Case by case basis I suppose. Some of those are good movies. But yeah, the Phantom Menace example is just what I mean. It's never a good sign when you get the sense that a movie was more fun for the crew to film than it is for the viewer to watch.


Thu Jul 25, 2013 3:11 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
MGamesCook wrote:
Quote:
So what do you think of parody or satire films? or just wacky comedies? The Princess Bride, Austin Powers, This Is Spinal Tap, Monty Python, etc.?


Case by case basis I suppose. Some of those are good movies. But yeah, the Phantom Menace example is just what I mean. It's never a good sign when you get the sense that a movie was more fun for the crew to film than it is for the viewer to watch.

Well I personally never got that sense from Phantom Menace, I guess I enjoyed it more then most people because I didn't have super-high expectations for it, mine were fairly neutral.


Thu Jul 25, 2013 3:20 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
I loved, loved, loved this movie! I saw it in IMAX 3D, the way God intended it to be seen.

I probably grew up watching the same cheesy kaiju movies that Guillermo del Toro grew up watching, like the Godzilla/Mothra/Rodan/Mecha-Zilla movies and TV shows like Ultraman. This movie was a beautfiful love letter to those things. Above all things, this movie was fun, from beginning to end. It never took itself seriously. It had just the right amount of cheesiness to be an homage to kaiju movies, but without ever making me roll my eyes or anything like that. Guillermo del Toro is one of my favorite directors, and he hit another home run with this movie. I'm seriously thinking about seeing it again (in IMAX 3D) because I enjoyed it so much.


Sun Jul 28, 2013 3:44 am
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
Darth Ed wrote:
Above all things, this movie was fun, from beginning to end. It never took itself seriously. It had just the right amount of cheesiness to be an homage to kaiju movies, but without ever making me roll my eyes or anything like that.


I just watched this yesterday and THIS. As for the comment earlier about how this might have been inspired by Top Gun, I wasn't really feeling that. Although there was a part when Idris Elba appeared that he was about to seriously berate Maverick, errrr Raleigh, for doing something totally reckless and Mavericky (okay, I'll admit that there were some similarities between the two characters,
[Reveal] Spoiler:
since he was also devastated by the loss of his co-pilot to the point where it effected his ability to stay in the game
and ... wait, maybe this WAS Top Gun with monsters!). I have expected him to scream, "YOU... ARE STILL DANGEROUS. But you can be my wingman anyday!"

True, the characters weren't so well developed that I actually felt, well... anything... when any of them perished, but the movie delivered to my expectations. Hot robot on monster action. Wait, that didn't come out right!


Mon Jul 29, 2013 12:49 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
Darth Ed wrote:
I loved, loved, loved this movie! I saw it in IMAX 3D, the way God intended it to be seen.

I probably grew up watching the same cheesy kaiju movies that Guillermo del Toro grew up watching, like the Godzilla/Mothra/Rodan/Mecha-Zilla movies and TV shows like Ultraman. This movie was a beautfiful love letter to those things. Above all things, this movie was fun, from beginning to end. It never took itself seriously. It had just the right amount of cheesiness to be an homage to kaiju movies, but without ever making me roll my eyes or anything like that. Guillermo del Toro is one of my favorite directors, and he hit another home run with this movie. I'm seriously thinking about seeing it again (in IMAX 3D) because I enjoyed it so much.


Nice! Glad you and Taleswapper loved it. :D I had the same feeling you described when I saw it.

@ Taleswapper: Great quote, LOL. You also have to add "I feel the need... the need for SPEED!" (and then mix in the High Five to Low Five hand shake) :lol:


Mon Jul 29, 2013 1:50 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
An interesting FYI: Anime News Network reported on some initial reaction from some respected Japanese Game Makers & Anime Professionals:

"The creator of the Metal Gear and Zone of the Enders franchises himself, Hideo Kojima, photographed del Toro and Shinkawa together. Kojima gave his thoughts on the film last week:

'I have never imagined that I would be fortunate enough to see a film like this in my life. The emotional rush I had inside me was the same kind I had when I felt the outer space via "2001: A Space Odyssey" and when I had touched the dinosaur in "Jurassic Park". Animation and special effects movies and shows that I loved in my childhood days - they all truly exist in the screen.

Director Guillermo del Toro offers this spectacular vision of massive kaijus and robots in PACIFIC RIM. This film is not simply a film to be respected, but most importantly, it let us dream the future of entertainment movies. Pacific Rim is the ultimate otaku film that all of us had always been waiting for. Who are you, if you are Japanese and won't watch this?

I hope you would accept this inspirational love letter that had traveled across the Pacific, written by Director Guillermo del Toro.'

Manga and anime pioneer Go Nagai (Mazinger Z, Devilman, Cutey Honey) said, "I was overwhelmed by the intense kaiju vs. giant robot action. It was fun!" Evangelion character designer Yoshiyuki Sadamoto compared the film to a huge, satisfying feast with the best prime cuts from Japanese tokusatsu (special-effects) and anime works.

Game designer Fumito Ueda (Ico, Shadow of the Colossus) remarked that Japanese tokusatsu films burned an indelible mark on his impressionable mind when he saw them as a child. Years later, he said that this film has battle scenes that surpass those images etched into his nostalgic memories. "

(http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/interest/2013-07-10/metal-gear-shinkawa-draws-pacific-rim-poster-and-japan-creators-laud-film)


Mon Jul 29, 2013 1:59 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
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LOS ANGELES (TheWrap.com) - "Pacific Rim" hits China on Wednesday, a watershed territory for Guillermo del Toro's monsters-and-giant robots epic.

Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures' 3D spectacular is at $84 million after three weeks domestically and may or may not clank its way to $100 million. But international was always seen as most important for the $180 million "Pacific Rim," and China the most significant foreign market.

"Pacific Rim" has taken in $140 million abroad already. If it's able to hit $50 million there, and build on that in Japan and Brazil, it could well hit $300 million in foreign grosses.

"That may or may not mean there'd be a sequel, but at least there'd be a discussion," BoxOffice.com editor-in-chief Phil Contrino told TheWrap.

China has a history with colossal clanking contraptions: "Transformers 4: Dark of the Moon" is one of the all-time box office hits there, taking in $145 million in 2011.

"You'd think ‘Pacific Rim' will be able to do a third of that," Contrino said. "The concerns would be the lag time between the U.S. opening, which makes it vulnerable to piracy, and ‘Fast and Furious 6.'"

This past weekend, Universal's cars-and-criminals turned China, its last foreign territory, into a record-breaking victory lap with a $24 million, the studio's best ever in that market.


http://movies.yahoo.com/news/box-office ... 17906.html


Tue Jul 30, 2013 2:52 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
Interesting update on Pacific Rim's International Sales:

"Box Office Report: 'Pacific Rim' Scores Massive $45.2 Million China Debut

Legendary Pictures' tentpole Pacific Rim soared to a $45.2 million debut in China, marking the biggest opening of all time for a Warner Bros. title and the sixth-biggest debut of all time for any Hollywood movie.

The strong showing at the Chinese box office pushed the film's international total to $200.4 million and worldwide cume to $293. 4 million."

http://movies.yahoo.com/news/box-office ... 00873.html


Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:09 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
moviefan_ek wrote:
Interesting update on Pacific Rim's International Sales:

"Box Office Report: 'Pacific Rim' Scores Massive $45.2 Million China Debut

Legendary Pictures' tentpole Pacific Rim soared to a $45.2 million debut in China, marking the biggest opening of all time for a Warner Bros. title and the sixth-biggest debut of all time for any Hollywood movie.

The strong showing at the Chinese box office pushed the film's international total to $200.4 million and worldwide cume to $293. 4 million."

http://movies.yahoo.com/news/box-office ... 00873.html

Cool. The notion of a sequel is no longer so difficult for me to imagine now.

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Tue Aug 06, 2013 12:03 pm
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Post Re: PACIFIC RIM
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Box Office Report: 'Pacific Rim' Scores Massive $45.2 Million China Debut

Legendary Pictures' tentpole Pacific Rim soared to a $45.2 million debut in China, marking the biggest opening of all time for a Warner Bros. title and the sixth-biggest debut of all time for any Hollywood movie.


not sure WB will see any of that.

http://news.ninemsn.com.au/entertainmen ... f-millions


Tue Aug 06, 2013 1:12 pm
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