The preview screening of Transformers : Dark of the Moon did not fill me with much excitement or anticipation as I am not a huge fan of the series. Although I did appreciate the first installment for its brilliance in CGI and I was interested to see what Michael Bay could produce on a 3D format. Also, my friend who joined me for the screening is an avid fan so I presumed his boyish excitement would at least carry us through to the end credits.

I was wrong. The film starts promisingly enough, with stock footage of the Moon landing and the President residing over the historic moment. Obviously Bay used this incredible feat of mankind and twisted it into a far-fetched alien/relic hunt but I at least appreciated his audacity. But as predicted the plot deteriorated and the script and characterisation became so hammy I half expected the soundtrack to change into a Benny Hill theme.

…a great ensemble cast…

Most of the same (human) characters returned, although some unnecessarily so. Shia LaBeouf as Sam Witwicky still carried that natural charm, but the return of his parents and John Turturro’s descent into a ‘just for laughs’ character made the unnecessary two and a half hours of running time feel even longer.

It is a shame to see such talent go to waste and with other great actors such as John Malkovich and Frances McDormand also lending their hand to the action-fest it looked as if they were only there for the pay-check. With a great ensemble cast you would think that Bay would utilise them to the best of his ability, but once again he has made the mistake of thinking a robotic royal rumble is the most important element of said genre.

…a plot that is somehow less plausible than the previous…

The narrative is as fast-paced and mind-numbing as ever  but  after so much carnage and a plot that is somehow less plausible than the previous, there will surely only be a handful of action-junkies and die-hard fans that will be happy with the directors minimal effort to bring anything fresh onto the screen.

2 Stars

Image courtesy of Dreamworks



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