"Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon" - Movie Review

"Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon" - Movie Review

On this 4th of July weekend, find out if Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon delivers fireworks, or fizzles out.

In a summer that is filled with comic book movie adaptations, movies about talking animals, other talking inanimate objects, aliens, etc.–its almost like the movies start to run together.

Seriously, I’ve seen Green X-men, Thor: First Class, and I’m getting ready to see Captain Wolverine Lantern–which is the story of how a mutant with green claws joined the army with an alien ring and fought an army with a big S.H.I.E.L.D.

Any way, some where between colored tights, super powers, and “far, far, away yet some how close enough to earth for it to matter” falls Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon.

In true Chi11ax.com fashion, I want to get a few things out of the way early:
1) I was not terribly excited about seeing this movie. Why? See point number 2 in this list.
2) Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen may have been one of the worst movies I have ever seen. It was so bad, that I had strong misgivings about seeing Transformers 3.
3) If you have seen one walking, talking, transforming, alien robot from another advanced galaxy–you have seen them all. Spreading it out across six hours, over three films (two of which are confusing) does not necessarily make it new or fresh.

Having said all of that, lets get right to it.

What I Didn’t Like
I loved the first Transformers movie. It was loud, had a lot of on-screen action, but most importantly, director Michael Bay found a logical and inspiring way to convey these robots in disguise into a live-action film. It was awesome. Fast forward a few years, and I see Transformers 2 and then Transformers 3.

Transformers 3 is sort of like sensory overload. At some points, there’s literally so much to watch, hear, see, and process that its a bit annoying. Still, its not enough to ruin the film.

My second issue with the film was the abrupt final sequence. Without going into what happens, its almost as if Bay ran out of budget money, so he just cut the film.

This movie had all of the typical Michael Bay-isms we have all come to know and uh…tolerate. I think Transformers 3 could possibly go in the Guiness Book of World Records for ‘Most slow motion CGI sequences in a Feature Film.’ There were times when there would be jaw-dropping action and then suddenly, a slo-mo occurs–and just as quickly as the slo-mo occurs, then the sensory overload is kicked back into overdrive. Which, clumsily leads me to my final, and MAJOR criticism of this movie.

Definition
Vapid
adjective
1. lacking or having lost life, sharpness, or flavor; insipid; flat
2. without liveliness or spirit; dull or tedious
Synonyms: lifeless, flavorless, spiritless, unanimated, tiresome

see Rosie Huntington-Whitely performance in Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon

Listen, I’m not entirely sure what happened between actress Megan Fox (female lead in first two films) and director Michael Bay, but the outcome was clearly seen on screen in the relationship between main character Sam Witwicky (Shia LeBeouf) and his new love interest Carly, who is played rather terribly by Rosie Hungtington-Whitely.

Aside from the fact that Rosie’s clothes never seem to get dirty despite ducking and dodging throughout the streets of war-torn downtown Chicago, the fact that her character also has unexplained wardrobe changes, annnnd the fact that she’s always standing, squating or bending in strange positions, her character really seems out of place in this film.

Reports surfaced that former cast member Fox, had issues with the only-sexual portrayal of her character in the movie. Now, having seen her replacement, I think I can understand why. Perhaps Fox simply wanted to be a part of the story, rather than be there to have her hair blowing in the wind. Whatever the reason, they should have had Fox rather than Rosie, because the chemistry between Shia and Rosie seemed forced and at times not there at all.

What I Did Like: Awesomeness
In true Michael Bay fashion, Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon is visually stunning. Period. The opening sequence, the minor chase sequences, the major fight scenes–they’re all so brilliantly put together that you get sucked in (except for that pesky sensory overload thing that pops p every now and then).

There’s one scene in particular, and you’ll know it when you see it, where Sam gets kicked out of the car and Bumblebee (played by the Chevy Camaro) saves him…that is one of the coolest things I have ever seen on screen.

There were two hilarious cameos in the film: Ken Jeong (The Hangover, The Hangover 2) and John Malkovich (Secretariat, Burn After Reading). Jeong’s scenes were…well, like all of Jeong’s scenes in every other movie he’s in–but they’re always hilarious, so that’s good. John Malkovich stole the show in my opinion. He plays Bruce Brazos (Sam Witwicky’s boss in the film) and was a perplexing combination of Mr. Rogers on steroids and a crazy boss.

I won’t ruin the movie by telling you what happens, but Optimus Prime (leader of the Autobots) gets angry. That’s all I will say. Wow.

Lastly, there is actually a story line in this movie, as opposed to the second installment of the film, in which Michael Bay and the rest of the studio stole my $8.50 by tempting me into watching that vomit that they put on the screen.

I enjoyed the espionage, minor history, and connectivity that was demonstrated in Transformers 3. In fact, in a recent interview, even star Shia LeBeouf said that second movie was not good. They redeemed the franchise in the third film. On the hierarchy of Transformerdom, I’d rank them as follows:

1) Transformers
2) Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon
3) Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen

Overall, with the exception of Rosie Hungtington-Whitely, I think most people will be able to enjoy this movie. And remember, this is the last on for Shia LeBeouf who has said he will not be returning if another movie is made. This means, Michael Bay may not direct the next film either. So, if this is the last time we see a Transformers movie, then they went out with a bang.

Happy Fourth of July.

4.00/5.00
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