The makers of the sequel definitely had a younger audience in mind because the story moves much more quickly. The designers behind the jaegers and the kaiju clearly are big fans of properties like Evangelion and the Gundam franchise; they hid some nice references and easter eggs throughout the film. One such easter egg is a classic Gundam that is presented as a memorial statue in the movie’s final battle sequence in the streets of Tokyo. In the original, Del Toro actually based every monster in it off of a famous Japanese movie monster from the films he was a fan of. Steven S. Deknight, Pacific Rim: Uprising‘s director and co-writer, stated –
I also grew up loving Ultraman and Space Giants and all the giant-monster movies,” he said. “I really wanted to take all those elements and see what I could do with them.
The anime influence is clear. The new weapons and fighting style are much more dynamic this time around. This new film might be more superficial, but it was a pleasant surprise to me. I could easily see this getting an animated sequel or TV series.
Even though the film is receiving middling reviews, I think we all should be happy that studios are still willing to make more of these giant robot movies.
I mean if nothing else, at least they are better than those live-action Transformers films.