Hello and welcome back to Cinemania. So…Bay-formers. Most people hate these movies, and everyone has taken a shot at Michael Bay because of them. Now, I’ve only seen the first two films, and while I’ve joined the anti-Revenge of The Fallen bandwagon, I can never get myself to hate the first one. Don’t get me wrong, this movie is bad, but I don’t have the same hatred for it that most people seem to have. Let me explain as I look at Transformers.
Plot–The story is pretty simple. Aliens from the planet Cybertron called “Transformers” wage war over a Magoffin called the Allspark, and this war happens to find itself on Earth. And teenagers get involved somehow.Â While we’re on the subject of the teens, why did Bay feel the need to include them? I know humans have interacted with the Transformers in most of the animated shows, but from what I’ve seen, they were never the main focus. But here, the Transformers take a backseat to the humans. I might talk more about that later, but the story would’ve been much better if the focus was where it really needed to be.
Characters–I can’t really complain much about the Transformers. They’re pretty much what we expected. Granted, hearing Optimus using the phrase “My bad” was just…why? But I can kinda forgive that. The humans, however, are pretty much the worst. In fact, I’m not even going to refer to Shia LaBeuf and Megan Fox by their character names because I haven’t met a single person who cares about them, myself included. Shia and Megan are hardly characters. They’re just mannequins who are there for the ride. And Shia’s parents are even less important. Come to think of it, why did I even waste this paragraph on these guys? Next category.
Acting–Again, the Transformers are really well-voiced. Can’t complain too much. And again, the humans are the opposite. Their acting isn’t horrible, but there’s no way Shia Labeuf and Megan Fox were the best young actors for the job. Anyone could’ve filled these roles and they at least would’ve sounded like normal people. The bright side is, at least Shia’s trying to be a better actor–I mean, have you seen Fury? But Fox gives Kristen Stewart and Lily Collins a run for their money. Not a good sign.
Writing–Weak. Just…just weak. First off, the opening monologue is Optimus expositing about the Cybertronian war and the Allspark…and he feels the need to repeat it when the Autobots meet Shia and Megan. Ok…
WHY??? I get that the two simpletons don’t know this, but the audience does. You could’ve just waited until this moment to mention it. As for the opening, just show the Allspark falling to Earth without the exposition.Â Yeah, we’ll be left asking what it is, but you’ll be grabbing our attention.Â Also, the jokes areÂ dumb and sophomoric. Seriously, did you really have Bumblebee pee on a guy? “Sam’s happy time”? I don’t care what you say–those jokes should never, NEVER, be used in a Transformers movie!
Style–If there’s one thing Michael Bay is good at, it’s making a decent-looking movie. The Transformers look awesome, and the fight scenes are pretty enjoyable. So there’s that at least.
Overall, though, I can totally see why other people would rip this movie to shreds. Bay can make a movie look good, but that’s it. It needed better writers and actors. It needed better focus. And it needed people who actually cares about the franchise. In fact, I wouldn’t mind if Bay was just aÂ producer, as long as everyone else knew what they were doing. That being said, it at least tried to introduce a new generation to the franchise. Yeah, it was a lousy first impression, but compared to its sequel, it’s the lesser of the evils.
Final Score: 2/5
I’m Chilton, and remember–sometimes, there’s a light at the end of the explosion.
title card by Kade Fisher