A long time ago, far away on the planet of Cybertron, a war was being waged between the noble Autobots (led by the wise Optimus Prime) and the devious Decepticons (commanded by the dreaded Megatron) for control over the Allspark, a mystical talisman that would grant unlimited power to whoever possessed it. The Autobots managed to smuggle the Allspark off the planet, but Megatron blasted off in search of it. He eventually tracked it to the planet of Earth (circa 1850), but his reckless desire for power sent him right into the Arctic Ocean, and the sheer cold forced him into a paralyzed state. His body was later found by Captain Archibald Witwicky, and before going into a comatose state Megatron used the last of his energy to engrave a map, showing the location of the Allspark, into the Captain's glasses, and send a transmission to Cybertron. He is then carted away by the Captain's ship. A century later, Sam Witwicky, nicknamed Spike by his friends, buys his first car. To his shock, he discovers it to be Bumblebee, an Autobot in disguise who is to protect Spike, as he bears the Captain's glasses and the map carved on them. But Bumblebee is not the only Transformer to have arrived on Earth - in the desert of Qatar, the Decepticons Blackout and Scorponok attack a U.S. military base, causing the Pentagon to send their special Sector Seven agents to capture all "specimens of this alien race," and Spike and his girlfriend Mikaela find themselves in the middle of a grand battle between the Autobots and the Decepticons, stretching from Hoover Dam all the way to Los Angeles. Meanwhile, within the depths of Hoover Dam, the cryogenically stored form of Megatron awakens.
"I bought a car. Turned out to be an alien robot. Who knew?" deadpans Sam Witwicky, hero and human heart of Michael Bay's rollicking robot-smackdown fest,Transformers. Witwicky (the sweetly nerdy Shia LaBeouf, channeling a young John Cusack) is the perfect counterpoint to the nearly nonstop exhilarating action. The plot is simple: an alien civil war (the Autobots vs. the evil Decepticons) has spilled onto Earth, and young Sam is caught in the fray by his newly purchased souped-up Camaro. Which has a mind--and identity, as a noble-warrior robot named Bumblebee--of its own. The effects, especially the mind-blowing transformations of the robots into their earthly forms and back again, are stellar.Fans of the earlier film and TV series will be thrilled at this cutting-edge incarnation, but this version should please all fans of high-adrenaline action. Director Bay gleefully salts the movie with homages to pop-culture touchstones like Raiders of the Lost Ark, King Kong, and the early technothriller WarGames. The actors, though clearly all supporting those kickass robots, are uniformly on-target, including the dashing Josh Duhamel as a U.S. Army sergeant fighting an enemy he never anticipated; Jon Voight, as a tough yet sympathetic Secretary of Defense in over his head; and John Turturro, whose special agent manages to be confidently unctuous, even stripped to his undies. But the film belongs to Bumblebee, Optimus Prime, and the dastardly Megatron--and the wicked stunts they collide in all over the globe. Long live Transformers! --A.T. Hurley On the DVD The special edition of Transformers is packed with extras (and more than a few product placements for Hasbro). The entire second disc is devoted to featurettes on aspects of making the technical tour-de-force--and the land mines involved in tinkering with a beloved '80s franchise. Executive producer Steven Spielberg is very much a part of the proceedings, from his introductory comments ("I think everybody likes the idea of taking something you're familiar with and turning it into something you're not so familiar with--like an 18-wheeler become Optimus Prime") to mentions of his films that influenced this one, like E.T. and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Director Michael Bay is brash and entertaining as he talks about his initial reluctance to take on the project, his indoctrination at "Transformers U" at Hasbro, and his enthusiasm for guerrilla-style action filmmaking. Star Shia LaBoeuf says, "He is the sickest action director" out there, and there's plenty of evidence here to support that. Other great highlights include features on how key scenes were shot, including the heart-pounding desert battle and the shootout in the streets of downtown L.A.--adrenaline-pumping stuff, even without the Transformers CGI'd in. --A.T. Hurley
Now, if you know me here on Lunch then there's one thing you probably learned about me early on... I love to hate Michael Bay. Yet I couldn't stay away from Transformers the first time. I began hearing from some of my friends that it was actually good. They're not big on Michael Bay either. In short, part of the reason I saw it was because I wanted to tell my friends that Michael Bay probably just made a movie with no plot and just put together a bunch … more
This is a fast-paced slick movie starting with the reason why the Transformers came to Earth (there are two bands in search of a cube) and a spectacularly filmed attack on an American military base in Qatar. At first the viewer thinks that these are some evil machines out of a Stephen King movie and then you realize (like in Terminator 2) that there are good ones and bad ones. The special effects are amazing and the story and characters are pretty good too. … more
I saw this in the theater and later when I got it on DVD my dad and I watched it, and he had the same reaction I did at the same scene. The goofy "hiding" scene around the house where 50 foot tall robots are trying not to be seen by humans and geeky little Sam is trying to find an all important pair of glasses to save the day. Maybe it wasn't that exact scene, maybe when it was when Sam's parents barge into his room and his mom tries bringing up masturbation. … more
Say what you will about Michael Bays Transformers, this is one of my favorite movies of all time. Though not everyone is a fan of this film, it was one of the biggest hits during the summer of 2007, if not the biggest. Transformers is an action packed, story driven thrill ride, something that Michael Bay knows how to pull off all to well. All of the wonder and awe of the film has been transferred onto beautiful Blu-ray High Def and this makes it just as much fun at home as it is … more