I’ve never done a formal movie review in any part of my writing career, and I’m not about to start now. No, what you’re going to read is an informal review from an informal point of view. You see, I went to view the new Michael Bay directed movie, Transformers Age Of Extinction Thursday night and I went to be entertained. I didn’t go hoping that my childhood vision of the Transformers world would be met in every shape and form through this film. Nor did I go hoping to watch grade A broadway acting. I went to simply be entertained and that means something different for different people. You may or may not agree with me in this review and that’s OK, but I hope it helps you make a decision on whether or not you will go see this film. That being said, let’s get into it. Warning, spoilers may occur ahead, I will do my best to avoid them but no promises.
The film was awesome. Well worth your $15 for the IMAX version. Do expect some campy dialogue, gratuitous camera shots of a teen girl’s posterior and some F bombs and other swear words. I personally wouldn’t take children to see this film due to the language. If you go in just expecting to be entertained you should do well with this. If you’re expecting the same Michael Bay style, well, that’s what you’re going to get. So don’t go in expecting anything less than Michael Bay, you’ll just walk out mad. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.
First off let me say I was grateful that Shia LeBeouf did not return for this installment of the Transformers. While I enjoyed the first three Transformers movies (for what they were) I always thought his acting was a bit campy. I’m actually a fan of Mark Wahlberg and I think these types of films fit his acting style just great. Wahlberg plays Cade Yeager, a down on his luck inventor who has lost his wife and is raising his 17 year old daughter on his own. In this film Michael Bay takes a creepy turn by not having a hot leading lady. Instead the hot leading lady part is played by Yeager’s daughter Tessa (played by Nicola Peltz). Bay’s camera shots seemed to be obsessed with this young lady’s derrière which is why I thought it was creepy.
Yeager and his surfer buddy go out on a pick (think American Pickers from A&E) for junk and other items. Cade hopes to turn these for a profit and make enough money to pull himself and his daughter out of the red (financially). He ends up buying a semi-tractor and has it towed to his barn. Later he discovers that this semi is not a semi but a Transformer. The Transformer turns out to be the leader of the Autobots, Optimus Prime. After some spit and elbow grease Yeager has Prime somewhat functional and the fun begins.
There is a ton of action in this movie and I found the CGI and action sequences acceptable and entertaining. There will undoubtedly be those who remain purist and scoff at what they would term, “overuse”, of CGI. Personally I love CGI, until they decide to try and “refresh” old movies with new CGI footage (cough cough George Lucas cough). The cinematography was what you would expect from Michael Bay, lots of crazy angles, swoops, pans and movement along with some flares here and there. But again, I take all that at face value, I wasn’t going expecting Oscar riveting performances with elegant camera work (just blow stuff up Batman!).
So Yeager revives Optimus Prime and while Prime has been “away” Kinetic Solutions Incorporated (KSI) has discovered what the Transformers are made of. They are trying to produce more of it to create their own Transformers. They are doing this by hunting down, killing and melting down both Autobots and Decepticons for spare parts and the metal they are made of “Transformium”. But things aren’t what they seem; KSI thinks they are making their own Transformers that will forever rid the world of human wars. In reality, Megatron is manipulating them into building a new body for his “Spark”. The company calls this new body, Galvatron.
While KSI is busy building the new Transformers from the harvested “Transformium”, the Transformer bounty hunter Lockdown is their hired gun, killing and taking down Transformers for KSI. But Lockdown’s mission isn’t solely for KSI, he’s there to get Optimus Prime and bring him to “The Creators”. Lockdown is a pretty bad Transformer and kicks some rear in a serious way. But towards the end Optimus Prime discovers the Dinobots in Lockdown’s ship and releases them to help in the final battle. Although I was a bit miffed that the Dinobots were introduced very late in the film when I think they could have been used in a higher capacity.
I could go on at length about the entire film and probably blab on like an idiot so I’m going to just point you to the Wiki for more info on the movie and its plot and wrap this up.
The movie was great. It’s everything I want in an action film, things blowing up and lots of action throughout. The acting was good but there were quiet a few corny/campy lines that just seemed like they threw them in there without really considering them. John Goodman as Hound was a particular favorite of mine. His dialogue, along with his voice, made for a memorable character. The movie is rated PG-13 and I think it has earned that rating for some of the language throughout the film (the F word was dropped a few times). That being said, this is not a film I would let my children watch. Overall Transformers Age Of Extinction was exactly what I expected and nothing more. Action packed, fun and exciting. Yes it had it’s moments of stupidity but what movies on this level don’t? I give Transformers Age Of Extinction 4 out of 5 stars and say it’s worth a trip to the theater. What do you think? Have you watched T4? Let us know in the comments below or on social networks. Links to the left of your screen.
For more info see Wikipedia