Very Well Done

  • Apr 13, 2009
  • by

What a surprise. Transformers, is sincerely the most unlikely candidate for one of my favourite films of all time, yet it nabbed a spot in an instant. Michael Bay, let's face it, isn't the greatest Director in the world, but there's no denying that he's still good at what he does. He has the capability of creating an epic and enjoyable mindless blockbuster, that when you come out of watching it, you're not sure why, but you loved it. Armageddon is a symbol of that and with its many, many flaws i.e. the dog being hit by a meteor and surviving. You didn't care about the flaws as you just loved the many big explosions and shiny things.

"Transformers" is the prime example of that. Bay manages to capture the idea of one of the most loved cartoons of the 20th Century and brings them into the real world, introducing them to a whole new audience. I am one of the many fools who had never seen a Transformers cartoon before this came out, and I only decided to check it out because of its big budget beauty. The idea of bringing a cartoon, such as Transformers, into the real world in all of their transforming glory sure was an ambitious one.

The cartoon itself (from what I checked out later) doesn't seem to present any in depth definition of just how these large humanoid robots just change into a car, van, jet etc. So bringing these robots into reality, Bay was set the task of making these humanoid robots as real as possible, as a vague transformation in the real world simply wouldn't do. Thanks to the fantastic special effects guys, they managed to create an idea that in the real world, somehow seems so plausible.

The story focuses around Sam Witwicky who gets his first car, which just so happens to be a humanoid mechanical robot from the planet Cybertron. It's also known as Bumblebee. Bumblebee becomes Sam's faithful protector until his fellow autobots arrive, lead by the magnificent Optimus Prime. The autobots have come to Earth to recover the All Spark, which is the life giver to all Cybertronians and is an object which their sworn enemy, Megatron, leader of the evil Decepticons, seeks to use as a way of taking over the universe. What follows is a very exciting ride in which the humans are introduced to the Cybertronians as they fight to keep the All Spark away from Megatron.

The cast isn't a major ensemble of A lister's, but the voice cast of the Transformers themselves is very impressive as it brings those voice actors from the cartoon to draw in the loyal fans. Peter Cullen as Optimus Prime I'm sure is the real draw for all Transformer cartoon loyalists, but unfortunately, if you were hoping Frank Welker would reprise his role as Megatron, you're going to be disappointed. However, Megatron is now voiced by the fantastic Hugo Weaving who manages to portray a truly intimidating voice to the intimidating Decepticon leader.

Shia LaBeouf is suitable for his role as Sam Witwicky, and of course the beautiful Megan Fox serves her purpose of being the eye candy of the picture and serving as Sam's love interest, Mikaela. There are a number of supporting cast involved which add quite a bit of joy to the film, including the likes of Tyrese Gibson and Josh Duhmal. The acting overall isn't 5 star, but who would expect it to be, when you're only really watching this movie for the 50 foot tall robots that can change into any machine they want.

There are a few moments within the film that bring it down a lot and I'm sad to say, they're the moments that include LaBeouf. Don't misunderstand me, he's good at the role, but there are times when he becomes quite annoying. Megan Fox doesn't really serve any particular purpose other than being the eye candy of the film as her character seems to lack any sort of depth or substance. The Transformers themselves are certainly the only part of the film that make it watchable, and to be honest I think this film could have easily been done without the human involvement and would have done just as well if it were set on Cybertron.

There are many points in the film with which the humans seem utterly significant and that drags it down a lot. The voice acting is brilliant and the CGI is utterly flawless even if the Transformers seem a bit busy on the mechanical side of things. I loved this movie and it's truly a popcorn flick that doesn't require any sort of in depth thought and let's be honest, that type of escapism can always be acceptable from time to time. I'm sure there's quite a bit the Transformer loyalists would say negatively about this film, but I truly loved it and can watch it again and again.

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Steven Stewart ()
Currently studying Law at University, my main interests revolve around Politics. I read quite a lot and love learning about History. Not just the history of a specific time, place and person, but I'm … more
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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...
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Cast: Colin Fickes, Michael O'Neill, Anthony Anderson, Robert Foxworth, Glenn Morshower, Jon Voight, Bob Stephenson, Rachael Taylor, Bernie Mac, J.P. Manoux, John Robinson, John Turturro, Rick Gomez, Hugo Weaving, Darius McCrary, Tyrese Gibson, Amaury Nolasco, Chris Ellis, Jess Harnell, Steven Ford, Craig Barnett, Kevin Dunn, Shia LaBeouf, Andy Milder, Travis Van Winkle, Samantha Smith, Zack Ward, Odette Yustman, Johnny Sanchez, Tom Lenk, Michael Shamus Wiles, Charlie Adler, Peter Cullen, Colleen Porch, Mike Fisher, Wiley M. Pickett, Julie White, Jason White, Peter Jacobson, Sean Smith, Brian Stepanek, Esther Scott, Carlos Moreno, Jr., Reno Wilson, Mark Ryan, W. Morgan Sheppard, Rizwan Manji, Josh Duhamel, Ronnie Sperling, Jamison Yang, Megan Fox, Luis Echagarruga, Patrick Mulderrig, Brian Shehan, Michael Trisler, Ashkan Kashanchi, Jimmie Wood, C.J. Thomason, Lt. Frederic Doss, Charlie Bodin, Josh Feinman, Brian Prescott, Scott Peat, Jamie McBride, Brian Reece, Ravi Patel, Andy Dominguez, Madison Mason, Jeremy Jojola, Jessica Kartalija, Andrew Altonji, Andrew Caldwell, Pete Gardner, Sophie Bobal, Laurel Garner, Chip Hormess, Ray Toth, Dan Ferris, Michael Adams, Ron Henry, Benjamin Hoffman, Michael McNabb, Adam Ratajczak, Maya Klayn, Michelle Pierce, Jim Wood
Director: Michael Bay
Genre: Action, Adventure
Release Date: July 3, 2007
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Screen Writer: Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman
DVD Release Date: October 16th 2007/September 2nd 2008 (Blu-ray)
Runtime: 2hrs 20min
Studio: Dreamworks PIctures, Paramount Pictures
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