New Images from PACIFIC RIM plus Test Screening Reactions from Rian Johnson and Others

     February 4, 2013


New images have been released for Guillermo Del Toro‘s Pacific Rim.  The story is kicked off by the rise of monsters (known as Kaiju) from the sea who start a war that devastates humanity.  To fight back, the humans build giant robots (known as Jaegers) that are controlled by two pilots.  I’ve noted on more than one occasion how this movie is one my most-anticipated of the year, and these new images do nothing to change that opinion.

The film recently had a test screening, and the reactions will make fans even more excited to see what Del Toro has unleashed.  Among those who loved what they saw was Looper writer-director Rian Johnson.  Hit the jump for more.  The film stars Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, and Ron PerlmanPacific Rim opens in 3D on July 12th.

Pacific Rim is now in its test-screening phase, and the first reactions have started to leak online (does an NDA mean nothing to you people?!), most notably from recent DGA winner Rian Johnson.  Here’s what he tweeted this past weekend:

Warner Bros. Marketing: Please put, “‘You’ll pee your pants with joy’ – Rian Johnson” on all Pacific Rim posters. also posted these reactions:




pacific-rim-posterBut a Pacific Rim fansite is probably cherry-picking, right?  Let’s see what IMDb user OriginsOfRuin had to say:

I just got back from the screening (though I’m not this guy’s friend, haha), and I freaking loved it. That’s all I can really say, but the FX are flat out incredible (the ones that were done) and the story is solid. I didn’t know Charlie Day was in it, and being a big fan of It’s Always Sunny, that was a pleasant surprise (he fits his role perfectly).

Overall, it’s probably the best summer monster movie I’ve seen, and out of summer movies in general, falls behind the new Batman series, but that’s about it. I wrote on their response form that they should be proud of the movie and that I’m glad it’s not another Transformers clone (re: Battleship). They killed it!

I’m sure there will be more test screenings, and it will be interesting to hear more reactions as Del Toro continues to craft his picture.

Here are the images via USA Today:

Here’s the official synopsis for Pacific Rim:

When legions of monstrous creatures, known as Kaiju, started rising from the sea, a war began that would take millions of lives and consume humanity’s resources for years on end.  To combat the giant Kaiju, a special type of weapon was devised: massive robots, called Jaegers, which are controlled simultaneously by two pilots whose minds are locked in a neural bridge.  But even the Jaegers are proving nearly defenseless in the face of the relentless Kaiju.  On the verge of defeat, the forces defending mankind have no choice but to turn to two unlikely heroes—a washed up former pilot (Charlie Hunnam) and an untested trainee (Rinko Kikuchi)—who are teamed to drive a legendary but seemingly obsolete Jaeger from the past.  Together, they stand as mankind’s last hope against the mounting apocalypse.


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  • Norm

    Unfortunately, I think these “new images” are all just screen-grabs from the trailer. I really want at least one good look at a Kaiju before this hits… I wonder when we will get a second trailer? Test screening reactions don’t do much for me: half of them seem like BS-ers, and the other half are the sort of raving opinions that you find on Yelp.

    I do have high hopes for this movie: great cast of people working on it, interesting concept, etc. but Travis Beecham’s spec script was realllly corny ( there’s a character named “Stacker Pentecaust”) and full of dumb dialogue and plot threads. I’m confident that alot of changes have been made from his first pass, but I guess we will have to wait and see.

    • Fabs

      Yep, screen-grabs from the trailer.

  • TheHOYT

    Loved the Hellboy movies, but this looks like Power Rangers on steroids.

    • Ryan

      Well then you obviously never watched Power Rangers…

  • Lance

    Seriously, I echo what that IMDB user said, as referred to in the article. Thank goodness this movie looks nothing like another Transformers clone. It’s bad enough Transformers is what Michael Bay made it, but to have other moviemakers deliberately ape the look and feel of it is a disgrace.

    Pacific Rim looks fun, and I’m glad to hear the plot is at least serviceable (or at least that’s how it sounds from those who saw the test screenings). Given how good Guillermo is with special effects, the story was really the only thing that could get in the way. Maybe Del Toro should do the next Star Wars movie after Abrams’.

  • Joseph M

    Unless there’s a really good twist we’re not being told about, I can’t see this being more than a CGI showcase of big robots fighting big monsters. Awesome to watch for about five minutes, then you start getting hungry for some real story. I love Del Toro, and want to be completely wrong in my suspicions.

    • Derek Brayton

      The movie is about Monsters vs Robots. Its not going to be “the departed”. Your suspicions suck!

  • XKRED27

    I didn’t know Rick Moranis was in this?

    • Hunter

      LOL. Charlie Moranis, eh?

  • spooks

    get over yourselves!!!!! It looks pretty good and i’m gonna go see it. You lot will enjoy it as well but you will probably pretend that you didnt.

  • Ash Talon

    The duel pilot aspect is a direct “borrowing” from one of the better Evangelion episodes. It made sense in the episode. Based on early reviews, it doesn’t make sense in Pacific Rim.

    Something about the giant robots just doesn’t look right. Perhaps they’re just too sharp. This is a common problem with CGI creations at that scale. They make them too detailed. Take a look at a mountain or large skyscraper in your area. There’s always a haze to them, and they aren’t as clear as smaller objects near you. From the little we’ve seen of PR, I’m just not wowed by the robots, because they’re too detailed and aren’t believable visually. And yes, I’m aware it’s not striving for ultra-realism.

    I just have large reservations about PR in general. I think it could end up being this year’s Battleship. Or more likely, this year’s Green Lantern (ok box office gross, fan reaction very split).

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  • Totem2013

    Amazing achievement.