So, I re-watched Pacific Rim the other night.
I still like it. I mean, what’s not to like? Giant monsters (Kaiju), giant robots (Jaegers), giant acting (everyone), and Ron Perlman.
But I noticed something that I hadn’t before. Do you realize who the hero, the real hero is, in this movie?
Raleigh Becket, our young, headstrong, scarred Jaeger pilot? Nope.
Stacker Pentecost, the old-timer, head of the Jaeger program, self-sacrificing protector of his Rangers? Nope.
What about Mako Mori, the gifted young woman raised by Pentecost who finally gets her shot in a Jaeger to avenge her family, killed by the Kaiju when she was just a child? Nope.
What about the scientific duo of Newt and Gottlieb, whose differing approaches to analyzing the Kaiju problem pit them against one another to curry favor with Pentecost? Nope.
The real hero, the true hero, of the fight against the Kaiju, is Hannibal Chau.
I know: you’re asking yourself “What? The black marketeer is the hero? No chance.”
Well, you’re wrong. Want to know why?
I’ll tell you why.
Because, when the chips were down and the governmental agencies that were prepared to cut-and-run from the Kaiju threat needed it, who was there to do what needed to be done, to get what needed to be gotten—a functional Kaiju brain? Hannibal Chau, that’s who. The rat-bastard, greedy, self-centered son-of-a-bitch.
So? What’s the big deal about that?
I’ll tell you.
Hannibal Chau didn’t dissect the Kaiju and part them out for Eastern medicine because of some sense of loyalty to a country or his fellow man. Nope. He did it for one simple reason: profit.
Hannibal Chau saw an opportunity and took steps to create a business model around that need. He brought together the necessary technical experts to ensure that his product was properly collected, stored, and processed. As a result, knowledge and practices that might otherwise never be uncovered proves the salvation of mankind.
Profit – 1, Altruism – 0.
Capitalism; ain’t it great?