Thursday, 19 July 2007

Transformers

More than meets the eye… You’re kidding right?

I will be reviewing this purely as a film and a film alone. I have never watched an episode of the TV series (well if I have I can't remember it) and have never owned any of the toys. I missed the whole Transformer fad by about five years, my childhood heroes were the Ninja Turtles. So I watched this from a pure movie going perspective, no nostalgia to live up to and no pre-conceived notions of what it should have been.

I have been watching the progress of this from the start (as I do with most films that take my interest). Michael Bay got announced as the director and there’s a little bit of an uproar! But to me, this is the perfect choice, if you’re going to have a movie about giant robots, kicking the crap out of each other and blowing stuff up, nobody blows shit up quite as well as Mr Bay. I’ve never hated any of his previous films (Like some people seem to), and have quite enjoyed Bad Boys and The Rock.

The teaser was released, which I thought looked really good, a mix between Independence Day and War of the Worlds. All very interesting.

Then the final trailers came out, and for some reason I was a little disappointed, despite the special effects looking amazing, I couldn’t help thinking it looked like a really high budget Power Rangers movie (of which I’m not a fan) and combined with all the voice acting in it being terrible.

However, as more TV Spots came out it was being marketed as some serious no holds-barred action alien invasion movie, like Independence Day but with bad-ass transforming robots. If they pulled it off it could potentially be amazing.

My thoughts...

What the hell happened?! As me and my mate left the cinema we asked ourselves did we just watch a comedy spoof of a transformers movie or was that actually the real film.

Seriously, robots pissing on people? Robot’s getting high from electricity cables? Robots break-dancing and chanting “Yo Yo Yo!” A crazy little schizophrenic robot, spitting and farting it’s way around trying to win the award for most annoying cgi character since Jar Jar Binks! Ebay as a “story” device? Slow-motion looking into each others eyes, trying to be romantic?

Would you like some ham with your cheese?

This movie is so bad I can’t believe it ever got made (especially using this script) and far from being taken seriously. The tone of the film takes a gear shift every 2 seconds. Is it a comedy, is it a spoof, is it an action film or is it an alien invasion movie? Who knows?

It is all over the show, sometimes it tries to be a comedy with stupid immature jokes like “Hey wouldn’t it be funny to see a small dog in a leg cast, have an old black lady put her middle finger up, have a dog pee on a robot or a cute mum say masturbation?” No, it’s not funny, it’s a cheap shot and the most unimaginative type of ‘comedy’ in the world. And your know what? It’s not even needed, it takes away from the film (well if you can even call it that).

Then it tries to be really serious. But by trying so hard it looks like a spoof, with people screaming “Oh dead god” and this is end of the world stuff people, be afraid, be very afraid. But with their never being any sense of fear or an ounce of tension what-so-ever.

Then sometimes it’s so stupid that it actually does appear to become a spoof as if on purpose, but I assume the writers didn’t intend to do this.

The script is absolutely appalling – it’s filled with the most terrible dialogue I can remember hearing in a film, cliché character after redundant cliché character and the story is so full of plot holes and inconsistencies that you can’t believe people got paid for it.

Ebay?! Wtf is that all about? You’re telling me that the most advanced cybernetic organisms in the universe uses ebay to find a pair of glasses? A pair of glasses that somehow have the directions to finding the Energon Cube? This is what the foundations of a story is based on?

Let me tell you - There is nothing quite as embarrassingly cringe worthy as seeing a giant robot shouting at a little boy for “EBAY ITEM 45213!” As soon as that happens you know this movie is in trouble.

This is a script so appallingly bad it pisses all over a well established franchise. I’m not even a fan of the original series and I can see that, it’s down-right awful. It’s like some smug git bought the rights and then just to piss everyone off who really wanted to make it, he released this stinking pile of crap.

There are so many things I didn’t like I could rant on for days, like the stupid as hell Sector 7 agents, all of which are completely unbelievable 2-dimensional characters (especially the lead agent). The annoying as hell Jar Jar Binks wannabe robot, (what thought process was behind that abomination of wasted special effects is beyond me).

Then some scenes appear to be added (just for the sake of it) because it ‘might’ be funny i.e. cop interrogation. This is not needed and it does nothing for the progression of the story or the characters. Save this for the deleted scene section on the DVD guys.

The robots themselves are reduced to jokes and self-parody, they act like lumbering idiots (demonstrated very effectively in the garden scene). It’s just annoying that there was so much potential and it was all wasted.

If I was a Transformer fan I would be severely pissed off.

There must be some good things right?

Well yeah, the special effects are amazing and so are the action scenes (when you can see what’s going on). Some shots are absolutely mind blowing; like the robots transforming and fighting each other and throwing each other through buildings. My favourite part was StarScream fighting about 9 F16’s (that shot was awesome). It’s also even more impressive considering this movie cost half to make what Spider-man 3 and Pirates 3 did.

But the action here is all spectacle as you really don’t give a crap about anyone (human or robot). This is mainly due to there being no character development or the fact that after all the ‘spoof’ stuff you really can’t take the film seriously or believe in what they’re fighting for, which is a shame. If there was some emotional connection to the people, it would probably elevate the scenes to a whole new level, but as it stands they just look pretty.

I really like the scenes with Bumblebee and Sam, as he tries to get Mikela, with different music playing and stuff. I thought that was a genuinely good idea and the only attempt at any character development, but that’s where it ends.

I’d sum it up by saying – imagine meeting the hottest girl you’ve ever seen. From a distance she looks stunning, but once you talk to her, all she does is make fart jokes and talk about how amazing she is.

That’s exactly what Transformers is.

6/10

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