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Why Pacific Rim: Uprising is a Fantastic Sequel

Updated: Apr 12, 2018

When I first heard Pacific Rim: Uprising was coming out, I hemmed and hawed over getting excited. Let's face it. Hollywood is NOT well known for making killer sequels. And they ARE kind of infamous for milking an original story idea to the point of nauseating the audience at the thought of another addition to an already-milked-to-death series. (Yes, I'm thinking of you, Star Wars.)

However, the trailer looked cool. It was my husband and nephew's birthday movie-of-choice. And I hadn't gone to see a movie since well before Holden Baby #2 was born. So I went.

I was blown away.

The whole time, I kept thinking, "Wow, this is actually really cool." I noticed so many things they were doing right in creating a sequel that held, to me at least, just as much of a thrill and emotional connection as the first one had. And as I walked out of the theater, I knew it was something I had to share with you!

Of course, there were little plot holes, inconsistencies and things that didn't make sense. (Writers are still fallible humans, you know.) But they weren't loud enough to make it an annoying experience. Especially not to someone like me, who can easily overlook a flaw or two if the overall story and characters are still quality.

Here are the top ten things I took away from this movie that I am definitely going to be on the look out for in my sequels and series:

1) It kept the feel of the original. Action with some comedy and lots of relationship building.

2) It didn't try too hard to out-do the first movie. It took it up a notch, but only enough to give us the thrill we were looking for.

3) The characters were unique, but not exact opposites of the original characters.

4) The plot extension flowed very naturally out of the original story, even though the first one ended on a non-sequel-requiring note.

5) It's plot additions were genuinely awesome!

6) Similarly to #2, the added elements were taken from something that already existed in the world they created and the dilemma they faced rather than pulling something completely non-related just to make it cooler.

7) It, like the first movie, wasn't afraid to kill off a character or two. And it DIDN'T pull the quickly-becoming-annoying "oh, the villain/sidekick/relative didn't really die" bit.

8) The pacing was perfect, and the combination of original plot and new plot was flawless. It didn't feel rushed or crowded at all.

9) They did an excellent job of creating an obvious "this is gonna be the villain" stereotype, then swooping in with somebody you were kind of hoping they wouldn't turn into a bad guy but were also kind of curious to see how they would do it.

10) It let the first movie be a straight forward action movie and built its own niche around the added element of mystery, which, again, took it up a notch without trying too hard.

These ten things are CRUCIAL in any sequel. And I, for one, was honestly surprised and delighted to find them. What are some book or movie sequels you've recently read/seen that restored your faith in sequels?

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