Transformers: Dark of the Moon

Posted: July 19, 2011 5:33 pm in Theatrical Review

Transformers: Dark of the Moon

PG-13 – 157 Min – 2011

Check Out The Trailer

Starring Shia LaBeouf as Sam Witwicky and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley as Carly Spencer, “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” follow the Autobots as they learn of a Cybertronian spacecraft hidden on the Moon, and then race against the Decepticons to reach it and to learn its secrets.

It almost seems too soon for another Transformers movie. Yes, the time between the first two movies was two years, just as between the last two. But, I can’t help but feel that this one was a little rushed. Despite that, I saw this movie not only in theaters on opening weekend, but in IMAX. And not only IMAX, but 3D. Hey, it had to be an epic installment right?

One thing can be said about this installment, it did not feel like the normal Transformers movie. The previous movies were action filled, but entirely light hearted in the core due to the amount of jokes (especially from Shia). This one toned down the jokes and went in a rather dark direction. The whole movie leaves you feeling despair and that all hope is lost for these characters that we’ve come to know since “Transformers” in 2007. I mean, the earth is getting utterly destroyed by the Decepticons. Like there is almost nothing left by the end of the movie. One comedic aspect that wasn’t absent, however, was Shia’s signature scream that he’s been doing since “Even Stevens” . That was during the first of two times in the film that a car transforms with a person inside (a complete first in the series, and I thought it was hilarious).

The casting was pretty much the same as the previous two films. Shia LaBeouf returned to his role as Sam, and actually made this go ’round a little different. We see a Sam who is completely tired of whats happening to his life. He has saved the world many times over, and yet he can’t tell anyone about it. This frustration comes to light in one of many job interviews he goes on. His parents were again played by Kevin Dunn and Julie White, and they were just as funny as ever. Josh Duhamel and Tyrese Gibson also returned to play Lennox and Epps, and rounding out the returning cast members was John Turturro as Simmons (probably one of everybody’s favorite characters). The spot previously filled by Megan Fox for the “hottie of the movie” was filled in by a no experience actress named Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, who only got the role because she’s ridiculously good looking (she was a Victoria Secret model for pete’s sake). Patrick Dempsey came in as an awkward bad guy named Dylan (even though I never watched a single episode, he’s known to me as the doctor from “Grey’s Anatomy”). Also new to the cast was John Malkovich (after hating him for so long, this guy redeemed himself for me when he played Marvin Boggs in “Red”).

The storyline for the movie was probably the most iffy thing to me. It felt less like a movie about transforming robot cars, and more like an alien invasion film (and God knows we’ve seen enough of those). The pacing was set to high the entire movie, and because of that you get rushed through some scenes without getting to fully take in the amount of special effects that were put into this. The overwhelming nature of this film acts as a distraction to an Autobot’s death as well. I mean, there were definitely some parts to the film that were great, but if you are viewing this as part of a trilogy, it doesn’t do justice to the previous two. I honestly didn’t really like the turn for the dark that they went for. With Sam flying off the handle at everyone in the movie and getting in fights that he knew he couldn’t win, and the Autobots dying off or almost dying off every five seconds, none of it seemed to be in character for anyone.

The greatest thing about this movie can be summed up to two words. Leonard Nimoy. Not only is he Spock, but c’mon, he’s has the most bad ass voice (with Liam Neeson in second for that trophy). Him voicing one of the transformers was perfect. No other words can be said but that. As well as having him in the movie, there’s a scene where a couple of the small Autobots are watching television in Sam’s apartment, and what are they watching? An old “Star Trek” episode with Spock in the scene. That made me very happy inside (on that same note there is another reference to “Star Trek” when Sam mentions that somewhere looks like the bridge of the Enterprise). In the same scene, if you look on the wall as Sam passes, there is a poster for a band named “The Dandy Warhols”. This is cool to me because, not only are they an indie band, but they did the theme song to one of my favorite shows “Veronica Mars”.

Over all, movie is decent. It’s a decent installment to a good series, it’s a decent action movie, and it’s a decent special effects movie. Had I not seen it in IMAX 3D, I probably wouldn’t have been as impressed as I was. I cannot say for certain whether or not it’s worth a watch, but I will say this. If you care at all about the direction that this story line was going, watch it. If you got bored after “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen”, it’s not worth your time. I did hear that this is Shia’s last time screaming “OPTIMUS!”. So, really should we even bother?

 

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