Pacific Rim, Guillermo del Toro's 2013 fanboy foray into machines and monsters, is his highest grossing film at the box office - $411m worldwide. It is also, by some amount of circuits and slime, his most divisive, moving people to tears for very different reasons. 

The battle lines drawn five years ago will remain in place after this sequel, which sees hostilities renewed between Earth's mechanised saviours, the Jaegers, and wide-mouthed creatures from the deep, the Kaiju. 

With Idris Elba's Stacker Pentecost and Charlie Hunnam's Raleigh Becket no longer part of this universe, John Boyega uses his Star Wars downtime to take on the role of Stacker's son, the sensibly named Jake. 

Set 10 years after the mayhem of the original movie, Jake has dropped out from following his father as a mecha pilot and has become something of a better dressed Mad Max, pilfering Jaeger technology in the wastelands and selling it to the highest bidder.

An under-developed Top Gun-style rivalry/bromance

When his latest score ends in handcuffs, Jake is given the choice of the big house or Jaeger training - an ultimatum that arrives just as the world is going to need all the help it can get.

Watched through the prism of your 10-year-old self, Uprising has much to offer in terms of robots and rubble. Remove the nostalgia goggles and you see too many bitty characters, a dud (human) villain, an under-developed Top Gun-style rivalry/bromance and some hit-and-miss CGI.

Director Steven S DeKnight on set with John Boyega and Scott Eastwood

Del Toro bailed out of his plan to direct Uprising in favour of making The Shape of Water but is still on board as producer,  passing on his director's chair to first-time director Steven S DeKnight, Given DeKnight's previous pay cheques as a showrunner and writer on DaredevilSpartacusSmallville and Angel, you'd expect a stronger script. Charlie Hunnam was set to star again as Raleigh Becket but had to drop out because of scheduling conflicts, forcing DeKnight to rework the set-up. Things feel somewhat rushed.

The ending, which sees Tokyo getting another larruping, is good, MSG-consuming fun, but there's too much messing around beforehand with a whodunit, the military industrial complex and shoehorning new faces into the plot. 

Once more into the breach

With Black Panther still on screens and Ready Player One arriving next week, Uprising has its work cut out. Gut feeling says the Jaegers will be going into mothballs.