Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim is as Mercurial a movie as they come. Abounding in and playing on dualities, the movie twinningly becomes a poster child for all things Gemini.
The back story involves world destruction through the Kaiju, enormous and organically generated alien monsters that reach our shores through a funnel-like portal in the Pacific. These creatures have decimated all but a handful of Jaegers – similarly massive robots which rely on humans to power them – now stored in a facility in Hong Kong. The fate of these remaining Jaegers – as well as the world’s survival – rests in the hands of no-nonsense military commander Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba).
The tremendous size of both the Kaiju and the Jaegers suggest Jupiter, the planet with the largest girth. Their ocean-drenched battles make for impressive visual effects. However, the literal smarts (Mercury) behind Pacific Rim rest with the two human partners whose close mental teamwork is the only skill ensuring Jaeger victory over the predators.
We’re talking really clever interactions here. The pilots work in pairs, standing side by side, and must be extraordinarily attuned to each other. That’s because each human – holed up in the middle of a Jaeger the size of a skyscraper – controls just one side of the robot’s movement. Each pilot communicates with the other through a phenomenon called “The Drift,” a technology which allows the one to step into the other’s head and ensures what’s known as the neural bridge or handshake. Gemini rules hand-and-eye coordination and mental acuity, and each hand of a Jaeger must work with the other to pummel a Kaiju into oblivion.
One of Pentecost’s best flyers is Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam), whose long time pilot-partner– his brother, another Gemini reference – has died in battle. Raleigh’s new mate becomes Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi), a soft-spoken but determined professional who has her own personal axe to grind against the invaders. Two other pairings involve a father-and-son from Australia (Max Martini and Rob Kazinsky) and, on a more jovial note, two feuding scientists (Charlie Day and Burn Gorman) who manically use technology and experimentation to find out exactly what the Kaiju aliens – who are Mercurially quick at mental adaptation – are really thinking.
“Pacific Rim” is a satisfyingly large (Jupiter), technically futuristic (Uranus) life-and-death (Pluto) fight (Mars) involving mind games (Mercury).
Astrology Film Rating: ☿♂♃♅♇ (Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, Uranus, Pluto)