Emergency Podcast System: Pacific Rim

Get back in your giant robot, because Pacific Rim is the Greatest Movie EVER!

Click on the movie poster or the title above to download our review of the film,

featuring Thomas Pandich of Tomics! By Tom!!! and the Alter Ego’s podcast.

Review in a Nutshell: If you have any affection in your heart for super robot anime or giant rubber monsters, you owe it to yourself to check out Pacific Rim. It has some of the best special effects and production design you’re likely to see for some time, and it manages to be uplifting and hopeful rather than gritty and grimdark.


  1. DensityDuck says:

    Tom, it’s funny that you are doing this podcast, because you sound exactly like Charlie Day.

  2. I agree with you Thomas. Alex and I saw it in 3D (showing was at 10:15 on a Friday, did not feel like going to the basic and wait a few hours) and the fight choreography was hard to follow in ever nighttime sequence. It seemed to relax by the second half of the Hong Kong fight, but still raised an issue with me. Welp, another reason to rewatch it with the regular edition.

  3. Jung-ho says:

    No sequels, no prequels please — but a without that prequel we don’t get the traditional military on monster fighting that was hinted at in the opening montage. (The montage of course being totally refreshing). I’d gone to see World War Z earlier because my friend and I had missed the movie theatre so much, and that one actually ends with the line “this is not the end.” P. Rim starts as close to the end as possible, making it a whole, self-contained experience — in this day of comic adaptations and sequels being broken down into parts, the form of film is being abused, making for narratives hammered into odd shapes

    This episode was really great not just because of the movie but because there was a lot of discussion about criticism. The GME Podcast was always my example for critics weighing movies on their terms — trying to fit Pacific Rim into a template is pretty brainless. But invisible paradigms are set by things like the Academy Awards and film school — people talking from all directions about what a movie should be

  4. timeliebe says:

    Just saw it, Paul – will listen to your podcast tomorrow.

    But yes – Greatest. Movie. Ever.

  5. timeliebe says:

    Some of the critiques are valid – a bit of Orientalism in the treatment of Mako, could have used more development of the Chinese and Russian teams, a couple story threads that felt dropped (i.e., why the World Governments were killing the Jaeger program in favor of walls that plainly didn’t work).

    But really, those are just quibbles – because where it counts (Big Robots Fighting Big Monsters), the Movie DELIVERS! More importantly, it doesn’t insult the audience’s intelligence in the way a lot of Big Summer Blockbusters do – while the story’s not Pinter or even PAN’S LABYRINTH, the story beats make sense and are true to the characters. Also, while the characters may be archetypical, the actors commit to their iconic roles – and I was completely blown away by how emotional I felt about this.

    None of this should be a big deal – but when the movies PACIFIC RIM’s being compared to are Big Piles of Shit like Bay’s TRANSFORMER movies or Emmerlich’s Disaster Porn, the modest virtues of a movie that has a brain and a heart as well as Big! Action! Fights! become much more remarkable….

  6. bajra79 says:

    I loved this movie. hope theres more associated with the property such as comics, novels or even a cartoon series. I bought all the action figures after watching. I’d too hope there’d been more development of the Russian and Chinese teams. I stay in the theater for another hour just for that. Giant monsters and robots. the only quibble I really had is after all the scene with about the two leads being able to pilot solo, idris elba took the younger striker eureka pilot down with him

  7. VichusSmith says:

    Rinko Kikuchi.

    That ball bearing scene was still ridiculous to me, despite Paul’s excellent tie-in to the horrors of disaster porn, and Del Toro’s addressing of it. It’s a groaner.

    I have heard a bit about race and gender in this film. I wonder if it’s fair to say that Mako had problems in the Jager because she’s a weak woman stereotype, or is it because she’s never been in a real Jager. Did Pentecost die because he’s the black guy, and black guys gotta die, or because he’s the father figure who would sacrifice all for not only his adopted daughter, but his entire world?

    I’m surprised that any females are involved in the fight at all! I loved that Mako is part of this fight. In any other film, Mako would be clutching a binder for the whole film, and would never have made it inside a Jager. Also, Idris Elba would have had an American accent, because people are scared of Brits for some reason.

    “Why didn’t they use a giant gun”? Maybe they did at some point in their history, and it’s not good enough. Also, the alien forces were getting smarter and deadlier anyway, so just firing a gun would not be enough.

  8. timeliebe says:

    VichusSmith – please tell me you’re not actually trying to justify the stereotypes of “Women Are Useless in a Fight” or “This Is The Scene Where The Brother Gets It”?

    As for the former and your comment “I’m surprised that any females are involved in the fight at all!” – ever hear of the Soviet Army? The Israeli Army with mandatory conscription of both sexes? The Canadian Army who gender-integrated completely during the Nineties? Norway? Sweden? New Zealand?

  9. Jung-Ho says:

    Wait a minute – I think it was that his surprise was coming from the context of typical movies like this

    The other part though I’m not sure

  10. timeliebe says:

    @Jung-Ho – looking it over, it’s likely VichusSmith meant what you said, and I jumped in, full of righteousness rather than coffee.

  11. Jung-Ho says:

    It was an admirable effort, good sir

  12. VichusSmith says:

    Yes, timeliebe, you jumped the gun. I’ve been guilty of it from time to time, and those moments have been immortalized about the internet, so I understand.

    To straighten out what I was saying, my point is that people are at times looking harder at roles filled by non-white, non-male figures, ready to see the same disappointing character writing.They may even try to see stereotyping where it might not be.

    There was a critic (his last name is Legel; that narrows it down) who made a case for the Mako character being a typical weak woman that I was not buying. In the end, she was the most compatible, she survived the massacre of her family, she helped save the world. She actively was a participant in it. Bonus: she and Raleigh(did I spell that right?) did not kiss. That’s probably not the first time ever, but I was relieved that a kiss was not forced.

  13. timeliebe says:

    @VichusSmith – having had coffee some hours back and subsequently read your follow-up, yes it is less stereotypical than it might initially seem.

    Sorry to jump the gun, man – very sorry I didn’t have my coffee. That said, I’d like to see more of an ethnic spread in the hopeful, Asian-financed sequel….

  14. VichusSmith says:

    Even though the Typhoon went down really quick, China is the true savior of Pacific Rim!

  15. Jung-Ho says:

    Haha yeah that was great news. And it hasn’t even opened in Japan yet! (?)

  16. timeliebe says:

    Let’s see Typhoon II kick Kaiju ass and take names in the Sequel!

    Keeping my fingers crossed for a HUGE Japan opening….

  17. VichusSmith says:

    We’re gonna need quadruplets this time.

  18. VichusSmith says:

    August 9th for Japan.

  19. timeliebe says:

    Clones, VichusSmith – clones.

    Really, is this hard…?

  20. David Barnes says:

    One of the things that still sticks with me after all this time about this movie is it’s the first scifi movie in a long time I’ve seen where the scientists aren’t evil or in their bumbling, make things worse for everybody. They’re heroes in their own right who actually help fix the problem.

  21. Kichara says:

    Something that I felt was passed over in this review was something that I really enjoyed about the movie: that there actually wasn’t a strict romance. The relationship between Mako and Raleigh (I felt) was ambiguous, and COULD have been seen as a romance, but also could be seen as a mutual friendship between 2 people (which was my personal take). The respect and understanding that they had for each other was really something great, and something not really seen in movies between 2 people of opposite genders.

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