Robots Smacking Monsters In The Puss

I’ve heard a lot about the decline of cinema over the past few years, and plenty of people have complaints about the seemingly endless stream of artless summer blockbusters that focus more on explosions than stories.

But none of that changes the fact that giant monsters fighting giant robots is awesome.

If that seems like a non sequitur to you, then you are not familiar with one of the latest in this year’s parade of big budget movies: Guillermo del Toro’s “Pacific Rim.”

That film is set in a near future where sea monsters from another dimension spring from a chasm in the Pacific Ocean. Obviously, the only effective way to fight these monsters off is to have 250-feet-tall, nuclear-powered robots punch them very, very hard in the face.

This movie is what I’ve been waiting to see since I was 5 years old and began a personal crusade to wear out every Godzilla and Gamera VHS tapes at the now-defunct Movie Stop.

I was glad to hear before seeing “Pacific Rim” that del Toro grew up on the same diet of monster movie fare as I had. He has made a point to heap praise on films like “The War of the Gargantuas.”

Knowing that someone with a strong affinity for the B-movie fare that I grew up loving — along with the fact that del Toro’s earlier works are pretty fantastic even without the monster-robot battles — was a pretty good sign that this wasn’t going to be a train wreck like the 1998 Roland Emmerich-directed “Godzilla.” And it wasn’t.

No one is ever going to confuse “Pacific Rim” for “Citizen Kane,” but it was everything I wanted to see on the big screen as a child.

I think big, ridiculously over-the-top movies have gotten a bad rap in the past few years, despite this apparently being the most plentiful era of blockbuster films ever.

Sure, Michael Bay is out there making incomprehensible “Transformers” movies, but they aren’t terrible just because they’re big budget. They’re terrible because they make no sense on any level.

Even when I was in elementary school, I knew movies like “Destroy All Monsters” were inescapably silly. But it was harmless fun. And that’s something we could all use more of.