Another summer and yet another Transformers film by the king of film explosions himself, Michael Bay. Did Michael Bay learn from his previous mistakes from Revenge of the Fallen like he said he would? Well…yes and no.
Michael Bay delivers yet another overlong, thinly written, two and half hour of mechanical fighting and explosions with a lot of misplaced comedy once again. It’s not the abomination that Revenge of the Fallen was. In many ways it’s a better film than the first but fails to give us the charm and heart the first film thus causing this one to once again fall by the wayside of the original.
Yes, the twins are gone, the random acts of humping have vanished but we’re still left with many actors casted strictly for comedic roles that fall flat on their face. Especially Ken Jeongs role whose moments with the leading man Shia Labeouf as Sam Witwhicky are just plain awkward, and unfunny. Once again we are subdued to scenes of strange homophobia, racist jokes, and some awful dialog. Though there are some shining moments that actually create some genuine laughs but they are only a few and there the less over the top moments. The humor isnt as dorky as the second but it’s close. The first film is the only film with the least misplaced humor (but it still has it).
There are a lot more things this film does get right though. The robots have a lot more screen time (especially Optimus Prime), but once again a lot of the supporting autobots fall by the wayside with only a few lines each. Also a lot of the Decepticons are underused as well with subjecting a lot of fan favorites to glorified cameos before they’re brutally murdered by an autobot or the military (why?). But unlike Revenge of the Fallen the supporting autobots we get to see a lot more in action.
The story seems a lot more fleshed out than the first two but it doesn’t capture the fun of the first. It tries to be more dark but fails with misplaced goofy scenes that take you right out of the dark vibe. If the film kept it’s serious tone throughout it would have greatly helped from it. A lot of the story bits drag on too long and are just there to simply build up the climax, and what a slow build up it is.
But the wait is worth it. The final 40 minutes or so of the film is pretty fantastic with a lot of great set pieces but I couldn’t help but feel like the scenes were disjointed and poorly paced. I feel like this climax was hell in the editing room because it shows on screen. Scenes cut back and forth a lot with cutting between robot action to just shots of the military running through out destroyed Chicago. Be prepared to see a lot of the military just running. But there is plenty of metal crushing between the bots to excite most people. Some scenes were absolutely fantastic and breath taking and the use of 3D really shine. Just die hard fans (like me) will be disappointed and upset how a lot of characters are treated in this “final” entry.
The sad part is this film would have been a lot of more enjoyable or even quite decent if a good 30 -40 minutes or so of the film was cut out. For the true fans this movie is yet another crushing disappointment and shows us that the writers. and director Michael Bay still don’t know how to balance an even toned movie with interesting human characters and developed robots. For everyone else the final hour may be worth your admission price.