Wednesday, July 04, 2007
I'm sure many fanboys (homosexuals and queers) will be delighted by what Michael Bay has done to update the Transformers mythos (basically, that means incorporating A-level special effects and blowing lots of things up). On the other hand, those with no particular emotional attachment to the toys will find this movie a big steaming pile of shit. This movie is essentially one long product placement.
Thus far, the summer of 2007 has been full of very loud, very unsatisfying action movies. Transformers tops them all - it's louder, flashier, and more hollow than anything else out there. At 135 minutes, it drags - sometimes painfully so (I fell asleep). The movie is top-heavy with exposition, and the only decent action scenes occur in the final 25 minute. The characters are so poorly developed and the Transformers so singularly uninteresting that the question of who wins or loses doesn't matter and we are humans so you would think I would want not to be destroyed. All the effort behind Transformers went into making the robots look cool; nothing went into developing a compelling storyline or even make you care about the characters. Even the headline bout between Optimus Prime and Megatron is pedestrian - two big metallic monsters slugging it out while the camera spins around them as if out of control. It's kind of reminiscent of the Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots going at it (I think I would have rather seen a movie about them).
The only redeeming quality aboout this movie is LaBeouf's performance it is charming and earnest but he never made me care about Sam. The intent is to make this an average guy who becomes heroic after being thrust into extraordinary circumstances, but the movie doesn't get us there.
Transformers is a jumble of the good, the bad, and the ugly, with the latter two categories outweighing the former. The film has a lot of nice touches (such as the opening attack in Qatar, where there is a sense of danger, and the John Hughes-inspired introduction of Sam), but the meat of the story is plodding, recycled sci-fi drivel.
Yes, there are plenty of explosions, but those are a dime-a-dozen these days; even Discovery Channel's Mythbusters has them. Transformers isn't clean, big-budget fun; it's clean, big-budget tedium. For Transformers fans, I suppose this is a dream motion picture. For everyone else, it's a nightmare.