Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Pacific Rim

I have now seen Pacific Rim. I think it may be the most boring movie I have sat through. At one point I took off my glasses so I wouldn't be able to see the screen. I considered going to sleep.

The script writers should be shot for crimes against plot, dialogue, art and science fiction. Back in the day, you could give Jackie Chan an escalator and something else simple -- a bag of groceries, an umbrella -- and he could create a fight scene a hundred times as good as anything in this movie.

The idea of huge robots boxing with monsters struck me as silly. And the fights were incoherent and dull and endless. Think of that amazing fight scene late in the original Matrix, with Neo almost dancing around bullets. That's what you get when a Chinese martial arts expert designs your fights. The fight scenes in Pacific Rim appeared to have designed by small children or possibly dogs.

Patrick adds, "What do you have against dogs?"

I liked John Carter. I liked Thor and Captain America. I didn't like The Avengers, but it was one of those movies where I was interested enough to try and rewrite the script in my head. Too much fighting and not enough character development, but Joss W. was stuck with too many superheroes. There wasn't much he could do about that. And the obvious solution -- to make the movie about Loki and his conflict with Thor, because Loki's envy and villainy is what drives the plot -- would have left the other heroes in the background.

I knew everything ahead of time in Pacific Rim, including most -- if not all -- of the dialogue. Not only was it predictable, it was stupid. I have large parts of Jane Austen memorized. But hearing the lines again gives pleasure. Surprise is not essential. But decent writing is.

I went with Lyda Morehouse and Sean Murphy, both of whom liked the movie. Lyda said it was a movie about robots and monsters fighting, and it worked well as that. She also said it was an homage to Godzilla movies and the kind of anime that is all fighting. I have to defer to her knowledge.


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