When you heard that they were making a movie out of the Transformers, your likely reaction was “Awesome”, followed by “Wait, the special effects will no doubt be amazing but how will they ever make a story that won’t be terrible and make absolutely no sense.” Well they did manage to tell a pretty damn good story, deliver a compelling bunch of characters and not leaving you calling shenanigans on the movie’s plot holes as much as you thought you would.
For instance, sure the Autobots woud speak English to their human allies, but why would they speak at all to each other, especially when no humans are around? Why would Megatron ever speak at all to the humans he hates so much? The bottom line is that you are not going to give a tinker’s damn why if you are at all interested in having a good time more than being a know-it-all wise-ass.
My wife loved the movie, as did one of my students’ moms, who we happened to run into at the theater. I think this is mostly because of the amount of personality imbued in Bumblebee, the yellow Camaro who acts as guardian for the movie’s protagonist. He has a really rough ride through the movie and engenders as much audience sympathy and identification as both King Kongs combined.
If you’re wondering why I keep referring to the ‘human allies’ and ‘the movie’s protagonist’ it’s because I’ve forgotten all the human characters’ names. Oh well, I didn’t forget any of the Transformers’ names.
The style of the movie occasionally gets a little too crowd-pleasing for my tastes, especially in the gratuitous use of bathroom humor and masturbation references (gratuitous, at least, for a movie being marketed to very young children). John Turturro’s character get’s tiresome quickly. I found myself puzzled by scenes involving CIA codebreakers that seemed to add nothing and go nowhere. The movie could use an aggressive edit. That said, there isn’t a moment of Transformer action that I would do without. If anything, you may, like me, be left wishing you were watching the movie on DVD so you could bet a good look at what was going on in the fight scenes. One scene in particular in which one robot shoves his hand in another’s face left me wishing I had a remote in my hand to slow forward through the move again.
Enough already, just go see the movie with your girlfriend or wife and you won’t regret it.