Evil Movie Review: Transformers – Age of Extinction
It has been far too long since we last spoke. Unfortunately, I have nothing but bad news for you, as I review this summer’s blockbuster, Transformers: Age of Extinction. I spoke about this movie quite a bit a couple weeks back on our podcast, but I figured that I’ve settled down a little bit and could expand my rant! How can a summer blockbuster have anything negative associated with it, you ask? Well, the answer to that question and more other frustrating things about this movie are awaiting you.
A brief bio-graphical history of my love for the Transformers
It was 1986, a rainy day in Astoria Queens. I was really, really bored. After annoying the crap of my parents, they took to me to the local video rental store to get a movie. When I walked in my eyes were focused on the children’s section and I ran over as fast as I could, anxious to see what I could find. They I saw it. It was a volume set of the first 9 episodes of the Transformers cartoon. I took home those 3 VHS tapes, loaded them in my VHS player, pressed play and instantly fell in love. From there I was hooked. My love for the Transformers started with the G1 series and spread to the toys, comics, other cartoons, video games and most recently the live action movies. There aren’t many things that I am very knowledgeable or passionate about in this nerd multi-verse we live in, but I do know Transformers and I know when to call something out for the disappointing load of garbage that it is.
That being said
Warning Spoilers Below!!!
The 4th adaption of the Michael Bay Transformers franchise begins where the last one left off. After the events in Chicago the human race has turned against all Transformers. This is made clear by the anti-transformer propaganda on all the billboards and posters you see early on in the movie.
The remaining Transformers are hunted down and killed on sight by both the National Government and Lockdown, a new villain to the franchise, who is not with either faction. Instead, he’s more of bounty hunter, collecting transformers and bringing them back to his employer(s). It seems like TF5 will focus on these mystery characters that were referred to as the “makers” in the movie. (TF5 predictions and suggestion are at the end of the article).
A broken down, beat up Optimus Prime (Peter Cullen) is discovered in an abandoned theater by Mark Wahlberg, who tries and fails to portray a poor, yet brilliant mechanical engineer, who also happens to be a bad ass? Wahlberg is a good choice as an action star, but he didn’t belong in this movie. I thought I’d never say this, but I missed Shia Lebouf. At least his connection and bond with the Transformers is something we’ve seen grow over the first 3 films and it made sense. The bond between Optimus and Wahlberg just didn’t work. And without Shia, Bumblebee was basically a useless character in this movie. Also, the fact that bumblebee still can’t talk is beyond retarded. Didn’t ratchet fix him at the end of the first one? As for Ratchet he gets his ass kicked and his spark torn out of his chest in the beginning of this movie. The government agents led by Kelsey Grammer, Titus Welliver (Smoke Monster from LOST) and Lockdown (Mark Ryan) did a number on him, which made me sad.
Anyway, the government discovers the location of Optimus after Wahlberg brings back to life by jump starting him. A very pissed off Optimus starts attacking the government agents sent to capture him and escapes with his new human companions. The one cool thing about this part of the movie was seeing Prime in his G1 vehicle form for about 20 minutes. That made me smile.
The movie then heads into 2 hour long sequences of shitty plot lines and forced and unnecessary comedy. Basically, it’s what you’ve come to expect from a Bayformers movie. One especially horrible sub plot in the film is that Marky Mark is an over protective father of the incredibly beautiful Nicola Peltz. He’s always making comments about her small outfits, while trying to keep her away from the other pointless human character in this film played by Jake Reynor. Stanley Tucci replaces John Turtoro as the movies comedic relief, but you’ll want to kill by the end of the film. Tucci is a good actor, but not that funny and didn’t need to be in this film.
His role is as the CEO of a corporation that is building its own Transformers by using Transformium. This precious metal that was discovered on Earth dates back millions of years to the age of the dinosaurs. Actually, it was the Transformers that brought about the Ice Age that killed the Dinosaurs and not a meteor. One redeeming part of this plot line is that we are introduced to Galvatron. He is a newly built transformer whose design resembles that of Optimus Prime, with the exception of the head. All of the company’s knowledge of Transformers comes from the salvaged head of Megaton. It wasn’t hard to figure what was going to happen later on in the movie when you saw Megatron’s head connected to Galvatron’s body. Megatrons spark (spirit) traveled into Galvatrons body and in ONE fight scene with Optimus, he gains full consciousness, and in true Michael Bay form, he basically has little to do with the rest of the movie. Frank Welker is back as the voice of my favorite villain but really doesn’t have many lines. This is one thing that Bay has always gotten wrong. At the heart of the Transformers is the personal battle between Megatron and Prime. With the original voice actors involved in all of these movies, you’d think there would be scenes of dialogue between the two. In my opinion, there is no better exchange between hero and villain, than the one we saw in Transformers the movie between Prime and Megatron.
After the fight scene with Galvatron, Optimus and the pretty blonde are captured by Lockdown and blast off on his ship. The remaining heroes, Hound, who awesome in this movie (John Goodman), Drift (Ken Wantanabe), Cross-hairs (John Dimaggio) and the 2 human characters somehow get onto the ship and rescue Prime. Back on Earth, a self aware Galvatron takes control of the 50 man made transformers and hell starts to break loose.
Now this next part confuses me. So, the Dinobots were on the ship that Prime and the others used to escape from lockdown. In order to get them to fight on the good guy’s side, Prime has to beat up Grimlock. After he wins, the dinobots and the transformers rush to save Tokyo from Galvatron and his man made transformers, who he’s taken control of. Visually the action sequences with the dinobots were awesome, all ten minutes of them. After his army is defeated Galvatron retreats to fight another day. But the movie isn’t over yet. Lockdown returns to Earth to reclaim Optimus. The cool fight scene was ruined when Marky Mark and his cybertronian weapon, which he found on Lockdowns ship and for some reason was big enough for a human, get into the action and help kill lockdown. The movie ends with Prime thanking the dinobots for their help and him blasting off into space looking for these makers that brought Lockdown into the fold in the first place.
This movie sucked as far I, and true fans are concerned, yet it made hundreds of millions of dollars, mostly internationally. Thanks a lot Asia!!! What’s bad about this is that by Hollywood’s standards, this movie was a huge success, which means there will be more of them. More shitty Michael Bay movies, with shitty plots and bad comedy will be coming to theaters near you in the future. TF5 has the potential to be cool if we get see the Quintesons or Unicron as the makers, but I’m sure Michael Bay will shit all over my hopes and dreams. It wasn’t always this way. I liked the first one! Liked not loved, and they’ve only gotten worse. Do we remember Devastators scrotum dangling, Grandpa Jet-fire or Sentinel Prime?
I guess the only thing to be happy about is that after 30 years the Transformers are still relevant and more popular than ever. My hope is that the franchise is given to someone else who will give the G1 fans what they deserve, a transformers movie based in 1986 or better yet, the animated classic, Transformers the movie!!!
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