Jeff's Reviews

Thoughts on every movie I've ever seen.

Transformers (2007)

Directed by Michael Bay

Starring Shia LaBeouf, Megan Fox, Josh Duhamel, Tyrese Gibson


Well done, for the most part. Only a little Bay cheese and silliness. Nice effects, and a slight attempt to stay somewhat faithful to the original material.

Shia does a pretty good job in the lead. He’s definitely likable, and he’s definitely got charisma. Megan Fox is smoking hot, but she doesn’t come across as terribly articulate, which I guess is no surprise when she is supposed to function as eye candy. All humans are tanned and orange and greasy throughout. Cullen’s voice really brings nostalgic legitimacy to the robots, would have really liked to hear more veteran voices. Does Welker really sound that bad these days?

Bay does try to ruin the whole thing, though. Excessive and music intrude on almost every scene. There’s plenty of action, but it’s hard to watch. It’s hard to appreciate the impressive robot transformation effects since the close-ups and edits are so disorienting. Making things even more visually confusing is that the resulting robot forms hardly resemble human figures at all, with arms and legs being the only indication that their transformations are complete. During the battle scenes, it’s hard to even tell what you’re looking at with all the shaky close-ups of confusingly designed robots jumping, flying, and falling all over the place. The longer shots of the action, where you can see the effects without so much camera trickery, are much more impressive. Most annoying Bay dialogue is the repeated “No, no, no, no, no!” in increasing pitch and volume uttered whenever humans are in distress. A search of the script shows that this happens 26 times.

I think the biggest flaw with the movie is that the robots lacked any real character development. When Optimus says goodbye to his comrades about halfway through the movie, I don’t care. Jazz dies, but I don’t care. I would have liked to see classic relationship between Megatron and Starscream develop a little more thoroughly so that we knew what the heck Megatron was talking about when he complains about it. They can’t rely on the development which occurred in the cartoon and 1986 movie. That was too long ago.

Nice and long. Not sure if all of the pop culture and movie references were put in there for comedy or to make money, but either way, they really pull you out of the movie. Didn’t really understand why they threw those interview clips into the credits.

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