Friday, June 27, 2014

Movie Review: Transformers: Age of Extinction

I went to see Transformers: Age of Extinction tonight with +Allen Simpson and Ox. It was long, like very long. 165 minutes long, and I felt all of it.

Short version: I'd give it a C. Rent it at a Redbox for a buck, not on Blu-Ray! SPOILERS HAPPEN BELOW!!!

First: No Shia or Megan Fox. Those who have burned their bridges with Michael Bey and aren't going to be finding work with him any time soon. So, that means all new actors which is fine. Marky Mark seems like an odd choice but I was willing to give him a chance. I normally like him.

And then he fell into movie trope the worst. The daughter has only one parent. Now, there are two possible movie tropes here. There's either kid has one parent and other is missing OR there is the both parents are as dumb as a bag of hammers. They went for the second trope in the first three Transformers movies with foolish, bumbling, too stupid to live parents. This time they went with dead mom, single over-protective dad and he did that a lot. Constantly beat the horse to death.

The boyfriend, "Lucky Charms" had an accent sometimes that he claimed was Irish, hence the nickname. But, it wasn't always there. In one scene he was a complete coward after Marky "Dad" Mark asked, "You're not gonna bitch out on me are you?" Then of course the guy did... then Marky "over-protective but now I see you really love him so it's okay Dad" left his daughter in the guy's charge as he'd defend her. Really? He just bitched out on you.

Many times, MANY times, the car/transformer they were in would blow up, be shot, transform, fly through the air and hit a building and have to catch the fleshy human cargo. Inertia, thankfully didn't apply or they'd have been squished to paste over and over again. So, inertialess drive does exist apparently outside of the Lensman Universe.

About the time the movie SHOULD be winding up the bad guy is talked into being a good guy by Marky Mark in a 15 second conversation by phone and the second half of the movie has him being instead of the bad guy, comic relief. Seriously. He went from bad guy to comic relief. The bad guy switched from him to a bunch of others under the control of a Megatron Clone and then back from him to some other robot they'd previously tricked into leaving the galaxy... but he came back. The thing with a good story is it needs focus, it needs a bad guy. Darth Vader with the Emperor in the background is good, but going from Darth Vader to an army of clones to the emperor again... it just doesn't work. It's not good.

The heroes weren't really heroic in that the things that happened didn't happen because they were in charge of anything. They happened as the heroes reacted to things. It was always reaction. The humans in the story weren't needed at all really except as support for the robots which is cool. It's a Transformers movie after all and not a humans movie. Then why'd they spend soooo much time getting us to know the humans?

The internal logic of the movie fell flat to me. Really flat. The physics of it all was more egregiously bad than in past movies, all of which I've liked. This one? Not so much.

Did I mention the Dino-bots? Not a fan. They were the second half of the movie, oh, and John Goodman as a big cigar smoking robot. Why? I don't know. He even said once when he fell into a building, "My fat ass is stuck." *sigh* Really? At least it wasn't the balls sight gag from an earlier incarnation.

The most noteworthy part of it for me was that in the whole 17 hour long epic, okay, it only felt that long, the special effects were so special they never actually looked like effects to me. I was never brought out of the movie by them. It really looked like robots were destroying the US again, and then China. Special Effects have come a long way.
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