With quirky characterizations and artisanal set design, Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim (2013) showed more wit and craftsmanship than nearly any other sci-fi blockbuster of its decade. This unnecessary sequel, lacking the original’s assets, plays like a vapid Transformers knockoff. The story takes place ten years after the first film ended; the space monsters from the original have been defeated, but an international military alliance continues to train soldiers to operate the giant robots that fought them. In the movie’s first half, new recruits go through basic training; in the second, they put their skills to use when an anonymous villain takes control of some giant robots and starts destroying cities. Steven S. DeKnight directed; with John Boyega, Scott Eastwood, and Charlie Day.