Monday, July 4, 2011

Transformers: Dark of The Moon (review)

C (4.3)

This will be a deadly honest review as I've seen this with a friend watching this film. Transformers: Dark of The Moon is exactly two and a half times better than Revenge Of The Fallen. It improved from fixing the problems from the first sequel of the franchise - some of it. However it's still bad.

In this installment, we found out the origin of the war between the two alien robot races: the Autobots and the Decepticons. And a cargo ship essential to winning the war had crashed into the moon and when NASA discovered it in the 60s, the US Government decided to make the famous moon landing to investigate the ship. Then they decided to cover it up to avoid being in a conspiracy. 

Now we get to explore Sam Witwicky (Shia Labeouf) who’s currently unemployed and has a new girlfriend Carly (Rosie Huntington-Whiteley who's obviously hot in here). He finds work from John Malcovich and he's caught up with the Autobots again after not only Optimus Prime discovered the cover up by the government, but revived his captain Sentinel Prime. At the same time the Decepticons return back to Earth coming from Carly's playboy boss Dylan (Patrick Dempsey) and of one of the Autobot's backstabbing just so they can blow up shit again.

Before seeing DOTM the critics have been bashing DOTM... because they wanted to hate this movie knowing that it will make almost a billion dollars at the box office and will make the audience dumb. The most scathing reviews came from Roger Ebert and Peter Travers. Watching this will destroy most of your brain cells and yet it will take brains to know that the entire franchise had never had one. 

Transformers: DOTM is the best of Michael Bay's trilogy. Unfortunately it's dumb and boring. Let's start up with the movie's positives. To hate Michael Bay is like hating a pedophile masquerading as a friendly guy from the neighborhood. But Bay delivers probably the best 3D sequences I've ever seen. The action is on the highest level of destruction there is and destroying Chicago is spectacular. Bay at least developed a coherent story compared with ROTF. The best performances of the film comes from Patrick Dempsey who's supposed to be the main villain if the entire movie had focused on its human characters, and Frances McDormand who plays the US Director of Intelligence since she's a top notch actress.

The biggest anger fueled by Michael Bay is that he's a crude, product-placing, sexist and exhaustingly clichéd director with no sense of flair. We have no idea what's going on with his mind during Revenge Of The Fallen and blaming the movie's poor critical performance on the Writer's Strike will not let him get away with it. There's too much to say on what was bad about ROTF but they did fixed only one problem: they changed screenwriters to develop the story of DOTM that added some common sense. 

Now let's go into the worst parts. I have never seen an action movie that can be so humorlessly wrong. The first ever shot of a human character that is Rosie Huntington Whiteley's character is pornographic. It still showed the sort of misogyny Bay tends to show to his actresses. The problem with Whiteley being in DOTM is that there's nothing interesting about her character that helps it to feel important. Shia Labeouf talks like if Aaron Sorkin wrote the screenplay without multiple layers of the dialogue, as it felt so clumsy and corny. We get shitloads of product placement and excruciating amounts of stupid humor. Exhibit A - Ken Jeong playing his usual one-note routine as the screeching and obnoxious Asian. Exhibit B - Alan Tudyk speaking in a Russian accent. Exhibit C – The parents, gremlins continuing their respective roles as being stupid for the entire movie.

I've seen a lot of movies and I cannot believe how many films had Michael Bay ripped off here. If you don't know where the robots were fighting, it's in the city of The Dark Knight and if you have deaf ears, the overwhelming score is the score from Inception. There are so many contrasts with Bay and Christopher Nolan and the salient difference is the change in IQ after seeing their films. DOTM is two and a half hours long so long that I’ve yawned 5x and checked my watch for about 6.

However the biggest flaw for this film and for the entire franchise is that it lacks a lot of heart. Unless you wipe the entire human race out of the movie, there’s nothing interesting about them as the films progress. And even with the 3D so effective and the spectacular action I was so bored and found nothing visually stimulating.

Those who enjoyed the previous adventures will not even care and it’s a Michael Bay film what do you expect? He may not be in the same league as David Fincher or Darren Arronofsky, so there’s no surprise that he’s a filmmaker filled with chaos.

Overall this is two and a half times better than Revenge of The Fallen, but Bay's direction and screenplay is so thin, that you'll realize the only problems fixed were minor and given that this is the best of the franchise meant that you're just watching an ordinary action movie. Prepare yourself for the biggest rollercoaster mayhem of the year! 

1 comment:

  1. Yeah I agree that this one was an improvement over the second but it still sucks bad, for me the first is still the best since we at least get to know the autobots we're looking at, and it's the only one where no Transformer annoyed me.