Saturday, June 27, 2009

Nerd Life Movie Review: Transformers Revenge of the Fallen

Allow me to start with the simple: This is NOT a good movie.

That being said, you should still see it.

The story is a complete mess. Way more complicated than it needed to be. As such, the middle portion of the movie drags on for waaaay too long. Then, once everything comes together, there isn't enough time to give the final battle the screentime it deserves. The whole final few scenes feel very rushed.

In the end, it doesn't really matter, we're all here to see giant robots, Megan Fox and/or BAYSPLOSIONS!

In all the chaos, unfortunately, many of the Transformers get lost. Megatron and Starscream get much more characterization in this movie, but the rest of the Decepticons are just cannon fodder. The filmmakers reused many models for different characters, and some are even characterless drones.

The Autobots fare little better. Optimus Prime returns to his 80s-era awesomeness. Bumblebee, Ratchet and Ironhide are all just... there. Arcee and ideswipe are very cool in the few scenes they're in, and Jolt is a complete ghost for almost the entire film. The only new bots in the movie that get any screentime are Skids and Mudflap, the Twins. I must admit, I didn't hate them as much as I thought I would. They are, however, still stupid and annoying. The point of having immature characters is to watch them grow over the course of the story. They're idiots at the beginning, and still idiots at the end. Also, for characters created to appeal to kids, they're language is nothing that I would want to expose my kids to. The way they talk fits the characters, sure, but be warned if you take your little ones.

Aside from Optimus' nerdgasm-inducing scenes, the only bots to stand out are Wheelie and Jetfire. Wheelie is a fun little character that I enjoyed more than I thought I would. Jetfire, an old Cybertronian hiding on Earth for ages is also a blast. His difficulty transforming and "old man" talk and thought process mirrors the audience's own confusion with the storyline.

As for the human characters... who cares? Most of the cast is acceptable. Nothing bad, nothing great. Sam's parents are funny in their scenes. John Turturro's Agent Simmons COMPLETELY steals every scene he's in. I will say that Shia LeBouf nailed his "Allspark freakout" scenes, though.

So, all this talk about story and acting. What about the ACTION?

Optimus Prime... holy crap. Every scene he's in is so mindblowingly awesome, your eyes will vomit from being overwhelmed. Bring buckets.

Lots of other great fight scenes, BAYSPLOSIONS abound. The effects are unimaginably amazing. You see every freaking gear on the Transformers. They feel real. Devastator is a marvel of modern special effects, with more moving parts than a carnival. Unfortunately, the character is very underutilized. Again, a warning for the parents: This movie is very violent. Sure, they're CGI robots, but some of the scenes can be a little intense.

So, again, is it a good movie? No
Is it a bit too long? Yes
Is it worth your time and money? Absolutely

2 comments:

Syrana said...

Robots - check

Transformers - even better

Explosions - check

Shia LeBouf - 'nuff said

Put 'em all together and I'll see it for sure. ;P

Fulguralis said...

Michael Ba-ba-blamBAYSPOLOSIONS. lol love the reference.

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