Wednesday, July 25, 2007
If I only had one sentence to sum up Michael Bay's bombastic live action full length feature film adaptation of the popular Mattel toy line from the 80's, it would be this; a highly entertaining long-form advertisement for the new Camaro...that, or the only convincing reason I've seen for the United States spending as much on their military as they do (let's face it, giant robots are really the only thing some of the U.S. arsenal is designed to kill).
Did I like it? Yup. Did I love it? Well, the price of admission was justified in the moment Optimus Prime takes out one of the Decepticons (I really couldn't tell who was who when they were robots) on the freeway...one of the coolest effect scenes ever, I'm sure, but to be fair, I wasn't a huge fan of the cartoon, and I was too old to play with the toys.
That said, it's a helluva summer thrill ride, the sort of movie popcorn should be eaten in. This picture rolls along like a freight train, with plot holes the size of the All Spark Cube and doesn't really hit its stride until all the Autobots show up; the first hour is sadly plagued by a subplot involving a hot blonde code monkey who cracks the Decepticon's code...or something like that. At any rate, completely pointless given that Megan Fox is seven shades of scorchingly hot brunette, and you really don't need another piece of female eye candy in this film. The whole hacker subplot was a waste of time, given that the film has obviously been subjected to some ham handed editing.
I can't say it has something for everyone, because I doubt my parents would find much to enjoy here, but it has appeal for the original fans, who run from my age down to the early 20's, something for people just looking for a fun night at the movies, and something for all the kids who are getting turned on to the Transformers for the first time. Shia LeBeouf is capably funny, Josh Duhamel is a great action hero, and Hugo Weaving makes a way better voice for Megatron than the original.
And in the final evaluation, let's just remember how many crap movies have been made about really great stories...this is a really great film based on a premise for a line of toys. To not screw that up (which would have been far too easy) is a major accomplishment. Especially when one considers what Bryan Singer did with Superman.
But don't take my word for it. Just ask Vampire Nomad, one of those original fans what she thought (you'll have to scroll to get her review, but it's worth it for the sheer zeal). 8/10