23 July 2013

I Hope We Die Like This



I don't necessarily believe it myself but I have a theory in regards to alien life. So far, we've not been visited by little green men and anyone who claims to have seen one is either a nutter or a bullshitter. Therefore, what if the reason we've never found any hard proof for alien life is because we're actually alone? I guess everything starts somewhere so why not with us? As Earth dies we'll move to another planet and then eventually another and another until finally you've got millions of human colonies on a million different planets. As we travel about the galaxy like intergalactic squatters, we'll eventually all evolve to suit our individual planets until inevitably the colonies look nothing like each other. By living and shagging on various worlds we'll eventually transform into the aliens that we currently imagine, abduct and probe us. Basically my theory is that in a few millenniums time, humanity will have reached its peak and become Parasitic Space Gypsies. 

Pacific Rim has a completely different idea to this, instead presenting extraterrestrials as giant fish creatures that want us dead. A giant portal has appeared in the ocean and has started spewing out these freaky looking aliens who have nine rows of teeth, five arse holes and swords for fingers. In response to this, humanity has participated in the only logical defence which is to fund skyscraper sized mecha-suits controlled by little people inside who are psychically connected. So basically, what we're left with is the ultimate Power Ranger Movie in which huge, fuck off-sized robots punch the absolute shit out of massive gunk-filled monsters. It's kind of like some sort of sci-fi, medieval film in which ugly future dragons are fought by knights that have been bummed by steroids and then strapped into a suit of armour that has rockets for elbows. What's not to love?

Stick it up his anus!
The basic message of the film is that life would be so much better if we all just settled our differences and became friends. So fish aliens aside, it's very obvious that this is a fantasy that takes place in a movie world that's very distinct from our actual reality. I don't even get on with my own neighbours so I'll be damned if I ever have to work alongside the French. However, in a climate where every film makes an effort to be real and gritty, this was a very welcome change. In Man Of Steel, the destruction of Metropolis was laughably over the top because it had tried to ground itself in realism. When Superman dragged Zod’s face along a skyscraper, I began to total up the financial burden that this would place upon our already struggling economy. Lois Lane would end up working in a supermarket, Perry White would become an alcoholic and Ma Kent would become the most wrinkled whore in all of Smallville. However, when it all kicks off in Pacific Rim, nothing matters beyond the joy of seeing a robot twat a monster with a massive metal ship. I don't think about the innocent victims, I don't think about the cost of destruction and I don't think about the state of world politics. All I want is for the big mechanical man to shove the boat really hard up the alien’s arsehole so that we can see the expression on its gigantic, startled face. The movie is just fun as hell and yes, I am aware of my issues.

I guess the only problem with these kinds of films is that when you've got apocalyptic sized bitch fights going on, the human characters can get slightly lost in the mix. It's hard to care about some fucktards’ daddy issues when we could be seeing an oversized Robocop get fist deep into some scabby Godzilla. However, for me, this film manages to avoid that pitfall by firstly making the characters interesting and secondly ensuring that their personalities are integral to the fights. The psychic connection that controls the machines means that any issues a pilot possesses could play a huge part in the outcome. If you get pissed off about something, the odds are you're going to fight better. If however you start getting flashbacks to some traumatic childhood event then I guess that'll become an influence too. As a child, I got my arm trapped in a fence and so just stood there crying until I was rescued by a passerby. If something as traumatic as this came to mind when I was in the middle of fighting a ninety foot creature with balls the size of the moon then the odds are that our world would quickly be fucked.

Everything about this film is just amazing, though. Being human, I'm obviously a huge fan of director Guillermo del Toro and although this might not be his best film, it's still absolutely brilliant. It's a big mainstream movie but it still contains all of his weird, quirky trademarks such as huge cogs, steampunk gimp suits and furless apeman Ron Perlman. Pacific Rim might aim for just being pure dumb fun but as big robot movies go, it shows crap like Transformers how it should be done. Where Michael Bay has banality and sexism, this has heart and style. There's a fight here between a robot and a lizard thing that starts in the ocean and ends up in space. After seeing something like that, it's obvious that Transformers 4 has got a lot to live up to. Sadly Michael Bay is such a talentless arsedroid that I'm not getting my hopes up. The neon colours of Pacific Rim are so gorgeous that it was like somebody had violently clawed at my eyes with a nail-file made of rainbows and glitter. Transformers, on the other hand, is so far away from being art that it's like watching an advert for overpriced cars, superficial tramps and lobotomies.

Humanity was not worth the fucking effort.
Speaking of bad movies, it's such a huge shame to see how badly Pacific Rim is doing at the box office. Despite being such a brilliant example of a summer blockbuster, it is currently being beaten by Grown Ups 2 which is about as depressing as being injected in the head with the blended up remains of Coldplay. Guillermo del Toro makes films that are genuinely unique and amazing whereas the quality of rival star Adam Sandler's cinematic output is equal to that of a particularly unambitious cauliflower. I'd like to hope that the success of shit like that at the expense of something as impressively imaginative as Pacific Rim is due to some sinister organisation subliminally brainwashing the taste out of humanity. Sadly though, I suspect the truth is that most people are fucking idiots all by themselves.   

Of course Pacific Rim isn't going to change the world but nor does it intend to. I'm sure there are plenty of plot holes and yes we can easily feign outrage at why the robots took so long to fight with swords instead of fists. Perhaps as well it'd have been better to stick the cockpits of the machines in the chest instead of the head considering how often they seem to get ripped off, but with something as big and glorious as this perhaps you've missed the point if all you can do is nitpick like a bell-end. Everything about this movie is geared towards pleasing the young child inside you and I don't mean in a Jimmy Saville or a rentboy kind of way. From the opening shot of the Roboteers tooling themselves up, my twenty-four year old mind just digressed twelve years and my excitement levels reached critical. I think I'm doing pretty well with seeing films released this year and so far this has been my favourite by far. I mean, I loved Furious 6 too, but with this I at least didn't need to over work my irony glands. In fact, the biggest disappointment with this film is just in how shit our reality seems afterwards. If we really were attacked like this in real life then there's no fucking way our governments would have either the balls or sense of fun to start funding giant metal bastards. Although when our destruction does come, I do hope it's at the hands of huge Japanese fish dragons. Not only would it be more interesting than our inevitable nuclear war but it'd be the most beautiful apocalypse we could ever hope for.      

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