I watched the first movie again, after I saw the second movie, because I felt like I had missed part of the story. So I figured I had forgotten most of the first movie. This is true, I didn’t remember much of it. But after I watched it, I was still left with a feeling like I’d missed a movie that should have taken place between Pacific Rim and Pacific Rim 2. Or maybe there was supposed to be a prequel? It could be as simple as too many scenes were cut, but either way, something was missing.
You are shown characters, and expected to feel a bond to them, but they are only shown in a fleeting glance. Comments are made that feel like an inside joke, but there was no backstory given to help the audience feel in on it. Maybe these characters are all based on characters that were in the comics or anime and the jokes were for the fans of that material.
Either way, I was lost when the main character, Jake, went to the academy and met up with his old pals. They were strangers to us, and the history was never explained.
So aside from my confusion on all that. The movie itself did okay. The acting was far better in this film than in the first. The effects and monsters were more creative, including the fights scenes. The plot was predictable at moments, but there were some twists and the acting/one liners kept the pace moving even through the slow parts.
Overall, I’d say its a good action movie to go see. I would strongly recommend seeing the first movie again before you go see this one. It is not a good stand alone film. If you have never seen the first, do not go see this until you have.