Thursday, 14 November, 2019

Springfield Actress to Co-Star in Pacific Rim Uprising

Scott Eastwood in Pacific Rim Uprising Scott Eastwood in Pacific Rim Uprising
Lora Ball | 24 March, 2018, 10:25

Even though del Toro's film wasn't exactly a model of considerate, nuanced filmmaking, there was a certain po-faced earnestness to the proceedings that made it work in an old-school kinda way.

Be sure to check back tomorrow for our full interview with Steven S. DeKnight, and read our review of Pacific Rim Uprising here.

Make no mistake, Pacific Rim Uprising isn't the same animal as its genre-entrenched predecessor. In this case, Boyega is the son of Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) who perished saving the world years ago. Though her character is something we have seen in countless movies, the young Cailee Spaeny is quite good and has the markings of a fine actress. When Uprising picks up, Newt Geiszler has moved on to the private sector, leaving Gottlieb behind at the Pan Pacific Defense Corps. However, when new attacks begin, it becomes apparent there's something nefarious going on under the nose of both the PPDC and the Shao Corporation. It's up to Jake and his friends to cancel the apocalypse - again. Even the other young cast members are decent.

I mention the marketing campaign of Pacific Rim Uprising not as an unnecessary sideswipe, but to examine the idea of expectations upon this film, the little would-be franchise that could. Their physiology is so alien that you can't really tell what's going on, making it kind of hard to be scared or intimidated of them on their own.

As the director, DeKnight - creator and producer of Starz' "Spartacus" series - does a competent imitation of what del Toro did the first time around.

DeKnight went on to reveal how he put his own mark on the sequel, adding that: "A lot of the action scenes in this one are during the day, the first one was at night, in the rain, or underwater". "A lot of the challenges on set are much more consistent". He's surrounded by a diverse global cast, not all of whom are given much to do (a half-assed love interest is horrendously underwritten) and the film's clear attempts to appeal to a Chinese audience don't feel as tokenistic as they have often felt in other blockbusters.

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The worldwide gross for the first Pacific Rim movie is a respectable $411 million mainly thanks to its popularity in China. This lighter tone may not have worked if not for its star. Boyega absolutely shines as the rebellious and cheeky Jake Pentecost, elevating the sequel with his charm alone. Eastwood is a decent enough straight man to Boyega's facetiousness, though his Nate Lambert falls flat when not playing off Boyega's Jake. The two bring an emotional depth to Uprising with their heartwarming brother-and-sister dynamic - one that's unfortunately lacking between with Kikuchi's Mako, who is criminally underused in the sequel.

The sequel "Pacific Rim: Uprising" is, like the 2013 "Pacific Rim", something of a chimera: a cheesy Japanese monster movie for people who happen to love "Transformers" for its very big, battling robots and thunderous soundtrack, and "Power Rangers" for its cast of teeny-bopper heroes and kinetic, overeager display of martial-arts action.

Pacific Rim Uprising comes through the breach and into theaters this weekend, March 23.

"So, we've got all your backs". Uprising is still a candy-colored world, but somewhat muted; dusty where Pacific Rim was drippy, rusty where Pacific Rim was neon. We know. We see the big scary things threatening to destroy life as we know it. Uprising isn't a flawless sequel to Pacific Rim, though with a largely different team behind the scenes, it was never going to be the sequel del Toro would have made. Of "Pacific Rim's" global performance, 75% of its ticket sales came from outside the USA and Canada.

Rated: PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and some language. Give us your best suggestion in the comments section below.

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