Friday, July 10, 2009

Transformers 2

So I saw Transformers 2.
I'm not sure if I should put my thoughts ("review") behind a cut for anybody who hasn't yet seen it, but... who hasn't yet seen it? XD

I'll keep it under the cut for formality's sake.


So Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen was destined to be the biggest movie of the summer, and that it was.

Big graphics, big robots, big noise, big on everything except a sophisticated plotline.

The Plot
What can I say about a plot so thin? Old hero goes to college, wants to be normal, doesn't get to be normal because of his associations with giant alien robots. OPTIMUS PRIME DIES OH NO! Old enemies rise up, threaten humanity and the Earth, and at the last minute when all seems hopeless, SHIA LEBOEUF SAVES OPTIMUS PRIME WHO SAVES THE DAY!

The plot is a half-way decent pull from The Hero's Journey at best, but luckily all the dizzying action scenes distract you from it.

Oh, one thing I thought of: if the Decepticons were able to revive their two-years-dead Megatron from the bottom of the sea with a shard of the Cube, couldn't Sam have done THE SAME THING with Optimus Prime with HIS Cube shard?! Instead of having to go through all this weird robot history in Egypt and having the Matrix turn to dust, only to have it come back after Sam has a whacked-out near-death dream about ancient Transformers? That was whack, btw. If there's something I missed about why Optimus Prime HAD to be revived with the Matrix and not the Cube, please tell me. I was probably too busy being blinded and deafened by the crazy CGI and soundtrack.

The Action

Okay, the action was plentiful to be sure, but I could hardly call it graceful or well-choreographed. Then again, what was I expecting from giant robots? During some of the action scenes, I couldn't tell which robot was which, or what exactly they were doing to each other. When two robots get so close to one another, all their little whirring parts mesh together until you couldn't tell if he stabbed him or ripped his arm off.

There's also a lot of explosions, and running from explosions.
But see, the only ones who have the ability to run from explosions are Shia LeBoeuf, Megan Fox and their crew. The highly trained soldiers of the United States and Jordanian military, with years of intense mental and physical training under their belts, simply cannot outrun the robots and the explosions. Tsk tsk.

The Humor

Haha, the humor. You see, I felt like I should have laughed at some of the jokes, like Sam Whitwicky's mother being all crazy and getting high, but something about it disturbed me more than made me think it was really funny.

Oh, those two robots—the twins?—what was up with them? The big ears, gold teeth, "We don't really do much reading" and the jive-talk? I heard about them before seeing the movie and everybody said it was racist. At first I thought, okay, it can't be that bad, people are probably just butthurt. But no, it really was that bad.

There were also plenty of jokes involving balls.
How old were the writers, like 14?
Most of the times I laughed were because the jokes were so bad that I went on and laughed because it was so bad.

The only time I genuinely laughed was when the old-guy Transformer, the Blackbird I think, was rambling about how his first ancestor was the wheel. "Know what he transformed into? NOTHING! But he did so with honor and dignity!"

Oh, I also laughed at Sam freaking the hell out in his astronomy class.
That was pretty hilarious.

The Special Effects
Oh, this movie is rife with it. I have to applaud the animators for having the guts to animate all these crazy robots. But the thing is, did they have to be that crazy-looking? The Transformers cartoon had these babies transform gracefully and all high-tech-like, but the Transformers in the movie kind of clunk around into this behemoth made up of several little metal parts. I understand the logistics behind it: not much on the outside, more on the inside, but couldn't it have been a little more discernable? Like I said, when the robots were fighting, they all kind of mushed together.

Optimus Prime was just a big mess of a shit-ton of metal when the old-guy Transformer lent him his parts... it was really ugly and sad. Good thing he shed it off next to the Sphinx at the end of the battle.

But really, the effects were incredible. Big ups to the animators.

In Conclusion
See, I really didn't have very much to talk about here. The majority of the movie consisted of robots running around beating each other up. See how easily I summed that up?

The movie is entertaining, and if you want to be entertained and don't want to think too much, go ahead, see this movie. I'll admit, while watching it, I did laugh some, and I was entertained

If I had to sum it up in a sentence, it'd have to be this: Transformers 2 is an overgrown, overglorified cartoon, with all the bells and whistles Michael Bay could possibly muster.

Here are links to some of my favorite reviews of Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen:

Roger Ebert's Journal: The Fall of the Revengers
io9: Michael Bay Finally Made an Art Movie
Topless Robot: Bonus! Rob's Transformers 2 FAQ's!


Chelsea said...

I loved your review. Did you know that the two racist robots were done by Tom Kenny, the guy who is the voice of Spongebob Squarepants?

It sounds kind of like the last movie. Where the entire thing was just fighting robots that were so close to the screen that it was a mess.

They do look really junky, don't they?

I didn't see the movie, but it looks decent in graphics, poor in story, just like you said. I don't think it was meant to have much depth anyway. Great Review, I loved it and couldn't stop giggling!

Lauren Ashley said...

Another movie based on a script that was probably written in crayon? Boo.