From a world beyond our own, and the minds crazy enough to dream it up, Pacific Rim Uprising has brought us back to the world of the Pan Pacific Defense Corps, as they gear up to take on adversaries familiar and foreign. And with a new adventure comes new characters, new plot twists, and new visual beats that promise to look oh so sweet on the right screen.
But is Pacific Rim Uprising worthy of the extra money in tickets, or are you better off purchasing some black market parts for that homebrewed Jaeger you're putting together? That's what To 3D or Not To 3D is here to help you decide, as we're cancelling the apocalypse to bring you a full third dimensional evaluation. If you came here hoping to see how we liked the film, you're going to need to re-direct to our official review. From this point on, it's 3D Jaeger on Kaiju action, as we take a look at how well Pacific Rim Uprising did in its battle for your 3D dollar.
Not all live action spectacle is created equal, and as such, not every 3D conversion of a tentpole like Pacific Rim Uprising is a perfect fit. That being said, boy is this film ever the perfect match for 3D excitement. With the action on display in the follow up to 2013's Pacific Rim, it's even fair to argue that the sequel fits the 3D medium even better than its predecessor did.
With the exception of brightness, and some moments in the beginning that wonk the eyes out a little, Pacific Rim Uprising is a lovingly crafted pastry of 3D decadence. There's a level of polish and panache on display here that makes watching this film through the usual facial furniture something special, especially if you're signed up to take the ride in IMAX 3D. A lot of work went into this conversion, and it shows.
Anyone who knows the Pacific Rim universe knows that there's a lot of things that can, and will, be thrown at the audience in good measure. Everything from missiles to debris from wreckage, and both Kaiju and Jaeger alike charging the camera are present in Pacific Rim Uprising, and it's truly eye popping. Explosions and attacks fly out of the screen and towards the audience with some stunning clarity, with nice lingering panning shots following certain attacks to their intended target. No lie, this film packs a punch.
Depth is another star in the Pacific Rim Uprising showcase, as standard spatial reasoning between characters, their environments, and their vehicles are all well defined. Even better is the fact that even more layers of depth are added by atmospheric effects, like snow and water, as well as the graphic user interface that the Jaeger pilots and techs alike use to control the show. The scale of Pacific Rim Uprising's action is greatly advanced by this depth as well, as everything looks that much bigger and more threatening.
There are a lot of colors present in Pacific Rim Uprising, as well as a surprising surplus of starkly white / futuristic visuals in some cases. Those shades of light and dark are not perfect, as the 3D glasses do dim the film quite a bit. But even in the darkest portions of the film's visual landscape, the film is visible at all times, and manages to not strain the eyes as subpar brightness would.
Blur, blur as far as the eye can see is what you're going to get, should you need a break from Pacific Rim Uprising's visual barrage. If you lift the 3D glasses from your eyes for a moment during a 3D movie, you'll see that there are varying degrees of blur present on screen. That's normal, as that's the image being manipulated to provide the third dimensional enhancements that really make the conversion worth it.
3D movies should start operating by a basic principle: either they should be preceded with 3D trailers, or go easy on the camera work in the first 20 minutes or so of the film. I say this because Pacific Rim Uprising has some moments in the first act of the film that confuse the eye. In particular, John Boyega's fight with his rival scrappers really does a number on the eye, but it's only for a short duration. Other than this minor, early speed bump, the rest of the film is smooth and enjoyable for the audience.