DVD Review: Transformers: Dark of the Moon
Available on DVD & Blu-Ray from Monday 28th November.
First of all, let’s cut Michael Bay some slack. His films may not be everyone’s Earl Grey but in reality he has made a few half-decent movies. Sure, most have very little or no substance but they can be fun and entertaining – if simply taken as no-brainers. It does seem however, that he is receiving a lot of flak (rightly so) for the mess that was Transformers 2, but everyone seems to be applying this to all his films which frankly is unfair (indeed some are crap but some of his other movies are not actually that bad). OK, The Island may have divided opinions but what about The Rock (Bay’s best film) or even Bad Boys?
The simple truth is everyone who watches a Bay directed film, whether on DVD or at the cinema should know what to expect… a hell of a lot of noise and blowin’ shit up!
Somewhere, in the midst of all the carnage, there’s a story (of sorts) which focuses on the pursuit between the Autobots and Deceptions race to find the Ark – a spacecraft from Cybertron that has an invention that would end their intergalactic war. There is one catch… its crash landed on the dark side of the moon… our moon. From here, it’s obvious what happens… fighting, explosions, more fighting, chases, more explosions, more chases…
Let’s deal with the negatives. Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) is not the same slightly annoying but loveable character from the first movie. Despite his sheer geeky persona, we willed him to win Mikaela over by sweeping her of her feet, puckering up and give her the biggest snog imaginable (even though a lot of teenage boys would probably want to go further).
Witwicky has now become a charmless, paranoid, overly annoying plonker, full of his self-importance (don’t you know he helped save the planet…twice) and how he manages to pull another hot girl – no-one will ever know.
On the subject of girls… well if you thought Megan Fox was awful then you ain’t seen nothing yet!!!!! Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is bad…very bad, to the point it’s almost embarrassing. In fact, when she’s on screen, that is the moment when you realise there is less wood in Fangorn Forest. To her defence, she is a Victoria Secret Model – not an actress and throwing her into a high profile film with almost nil acting experience was an extremely bad move.
In all honesty, LaBeouf is not much better. Then again, all that is required in a role such as his is to turn up on set and ‘run for your life.’ Thankfully however, there are the welcome and much needed return of familiar faces including Tyrese Gibson, Josh Duhamel and John Turturro as well as the addition of John Malkovich, Frances McDormand and Alan Tudyk enabling the movie to escape the realm of the Ents.
Believe it or not, there are some positives. As with all Michael Bay films, it’s the action that propels his movies and Transformers: Dark of the Moon is no different. This can be summed up in a few words – spectacular but over-the-top; as demonstrated when Chicago is annihilated as the Autobots and Decepticons use the streets and buildings as a battleground for their never-ending war. Admittedly, this, along with the rest of the visuals looks absolutely outstanding whether it’s 3D on the big screen or on Blu-Ray. Thankfully, these scenes, along with the rest of the film do not feel as long, tiring or even boring as the second instalment despite its slightly longer running time.
Whilst nowhere near as fun as the first movie, Transformers: Dark of the Moon is an improvement on Revenge of the Fallen…albeit marginally.
If anyone is expecting a character driven film with exceptional performances across the board and a deep, complex story… are you crazy? The fact is, with Michael Bay movies – what you see is what you get and like most of his films, the love for fast cars, hot women and extravagant action pieces dominates throughout leaving the viewer able to switch off the brain and take in what’s on screen. Transformers: Dark of the Moon does just this but it will leave anyone looking for essence and intelligence in their films entirely unfulfilled. Then again, who actually looks for these factors in a Michael Bay film?
FMV Rating: **½