A nuanced and thought-provoking review of the new Transformers movie


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/06/21/what-is-happening.html

Bilge Ebiri writes in The Village Voice: “No matter, because this after all is a Transformers movie, so soon we’re faced with fiiigjhkwetwnwwwjsahafajhwfohofoehaoowofoeoicioeciaqidjFaerlaeaffjgjlje XGRSXSsfdsmfjjjsomuchrandomstuffsomuchegjwogpjwd bldklhjitslikeyouthoughttheearliermovieswereeconfusinghahahah mfjff7ga98fhfhfplwxczchowarekidssupposedtounderstandanyofthisVSSH gmnskglactuallyhowareadultssupposedtounderstandanyofthisjskjjlvr lmnkrjsljrjsaywhatyouwillbutonceuponatimejsogrjdvpvarivpaeimp grfggjsfsfpoemichaelbayc” (via Kottke)


#2

I said that of the first movie. The 2nd movie was even worse. I have since said “fuck it” and not going to watch the other 3 which are just nonsensical garbage.

The comics had better, more coherent plot lines.


#3

You know, if they had stopped after the first one, it wouldn’t be that bad. I mean yes, it’s a stupid movie, but it had some original ideas and could be kind of campy. I had a feeling I’d regret it, but I got talked into seeing the second one. It was even worse than I’d feared. Fool me once…

So I can’t speak directly to all the others having not seen them, but what a monumental waste of money that series has gobbled up. I mean, not for the studios. They turn a profit so they won’t stop as trying new things is risky and studios are risk-adverse. But have they no dignity?


#4

I just hope Sir Anthony Hopkins made enough off this film that he can retire on a secluded private island where he’ll never have to think or speak of it again.


#5

If you have to ask…


#6

Happily I got warned by my fellow warhammer geeks about the 2nd film. The first I still like mostly because it doesn’t pretend to be anything other than an simple story about alien robots having a fight on earth. Not the best film out there but I had fun watching it.


#7

I’ve been to meetings like this:

"But then it was back to

okhvk;OFIavomitousdischargeofplotpointsbeuuauuq3c2i;C HIfihiehfeshliketheresachosenonehereandanotherchosenoneJK ljjkfaejjeexkandmultiplesacredobjectsmlecjaje;lfja;eaejl;a33itm jafcandjesusatonepointhteyevenhavemarkwahlbergutterarthurcclarkes famousquoteabouthowanysufficientlyadvancedtechnologywillbe indistinguishablefrommagicohgodstopcnhfhplerafffkalkqh jsgfffrkitsalloverloadandoverkillandchaoszcsmwmezzeajcjeaa pflikeyourshoppingbagburstandsplatteredrobotsalloverthefloorlchdqh ;3dbutwelostthiswaralongtimeagokrcifhahaeifiajekjj,l ekjfwhatdoyoudowhenthesignalbecomesthenoisezclkhwa4 friaghskfbandyoucannolongertellthedifference."


#8

If the public stops happily eating shit movie producers will stop dropping trou and squatting over their open mouths.


#9

Exactly. It was a low-brow novelty. And it was fun watching it with my sister as we enjoyed the cartoons together growing up. But I knew there wasn’t enough story there for a sequel.

Who knows? God willing, we’ll all meet again in Spaceballs 2: The Search for More Money. ~ Yogurt


#10

In the opening scene of Transformers: The Last Knight, we are presented with the spectacle of King Arthur and his knights locked in an existential battle for the survival of human civilization, even though we’re not really told who or what they’re fighting for. No matter, because this after all is a Transformers movie, so soon we’re faced with

so much random stuff so much

its like you thought the earlier movies were confusing hahaha

how are kids supposed to understand any of this

actually how are adults supposed to understand any of this

say what you will but once upon a time

Michael bay could bring beauty to an action scene

manic poetry filled with kinetic grace and heroism

like whatever happened to THAT guy

the guy who made the rock and badboys 2 and even the first transformers

pain and gain too that was pretty good

but now hes become a self parody

and the crazy thing is he knows it

but doesnt seem to know how to escape it

(Actually, there is one pretty good scene about halfway through, when a British butler robot named Cogman keeps undercutting Anthony Hopkins’s stirring speeches by playing the film’s rousing theme music in the background on organs and such. This got real laughs from me, and for once, I felt like Bay’s desperate attempts at humor were working. But then it was back to

a vomitous discharge of plot points

like theres a chosen one here and another chosen one

and multiple sacred objects

and jesus at one point they even have mark Wahlberg utter arthur c clarkes famous quote about how any sufficiently advanced technology will be indistinguishable from magic oh god stop

its all overload and overkill and chaos

like your shopping bag burst and splattered robots all over the floor

but we lost this war along time ago

what do you do when the signal becomes the noise

and you can no longer tell the difference.


#11

Oh I agree the 2nd one was way worse. The 1st one was stupid, but was at least followable. I wrote a whole rant on how dumb everything was. Like how Megatron froze in the snow, when they are used to waking around in freezing space. And these are the most advanced cybernetic creatures in the known universe, yet Bumblebee couldn’t fix himself with a laying around Soundblaster 16 from 1996 or something? Or how all the fight scenes were too far zoomed in so we had no scale, and the designs so complicated it just looked like whirling bits of metal.

I better stop now before the rage sets in again.

They will do anything for a dollar. They keep making them because some how they still make money.


#12

Still a better love story than Twilight.
The review, too.


#13

From what I understand, the intro to the movie sets up this backstory (paraphrased):

Merlin was one of the first people to contact the Transformers, and he founded the Society of Witwiccans, decedents of Merlin, who worked with Transformers over the centuries; Harriet Tubman was a Witwiccan as well as many other historical figures. In present day, the last Witwiccan was Sam Witwicky (Shia LeBouf’s character from the first movie) and he apparently died offscreen at some point.


#14

so soon we’re faced with fiiigjhkwetwnwwwjsahafajhwfohofoehaoowofoeoicioeciaqidjFaerlaeaffjgjlje XGRSXSsfdsmfjjjsomuchrandomstuffsomuchegjwogpjwd bldklhjitslikeyouthoughttheearliermovieswereeconfusinghahahah mfjff7ga98fhfhfplwxczchowarekidssupposedtounderstandanyofthisVSSH gmnskglactuallyhowareadultssupposedtounderstandanyofthisjskjjlvr lmnkrjsljrjsaywhatyouwillbutonceuponatimejsogrjdvpvarivpaeimp grfggjsfsfpoemichaelbayc"

Nough said…


#15

somehow every time i take a plane the only movie available is a transformer movie. it’s like the sky mall version of the video store that carries only jerry mcguire. seriously.

i can only figure this must be how the studio recoups its money.


#16

Having done a fair bit of flying over the last 12 months, I’ve noticed that the selection of movies - and TV - available is decidedly not what you might call top shelf. Invariably the majority of it is dregs. Which is kind of ok because I seem to suffer some kind of ADHD when I’m on a plane, and really just want visual chewing gum, but even so … a rolling season of GoT would be nice, or a couple of Wes Anderson movies.


#17

I stopped about 20 minutes into the first one. It was hurting my eyes, my brain too, but my eyes mostly.


#18

One of my single favorite things on the Internet is this Transformers 2 review.


#19

Maybe you’re the person to ask this, then: why do the robots have noses?


#20

I never thought it could happen because I usually just pretend awful movies in a series didn’t really happen, but Transformers 2 is the first movie I’ve ever seen that retroactively ruined the first movie.

When the original movie came out I was excited as a Transformers fan and enjoyed seeing them up on the big screen in a live action movie and was so happy they got Peter Cullen to voice Optimus Prime. Sure, there were some problems, but overall I really enjoyed it.

When I heard there would be a second one, I thought “Oh, good, they can fix the problems and this one will be even better!”

No. What I thought were problems were obviously the things MIchael Bay thought were brilliant and Transformers 2 was nothing BUT everything I didn’t like in the first one.

Now, if I try to watch the first one all I can see is the bad parts and think “THIS is what he thought was good…” to the point I can’t enjoy it anymore.