Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen Reviews

Mary F. Pols
TIME Magazine
Top Critic
June 9, 2014

The movie is like the play date from hell, the kind where a crew of children reduce your home to rubble and conduct endless bouts of loud war on the living-room floor while you ponder the propriety of opening a bottle of wine.

Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic
June 9, 2014

I would like to think that even if I was 14, either in body or spirit, I would still find this film an impossibly, incomprehensibly overlong and cacophonous bore.

Full Review | Original Score: D-
Laremy Legel
Film.com
Top Critic
May 6, 2011

It adds up exactly as you'd think if you've seen a moving picture before; the motivations are simple while the laughs pound you about the head and face.

Full Review | Original Score: C
David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic
July 6, 2009

Much of the movie is computer-generated hash, weightless even with nonstop BOOMS and METAL GROANS and THUDS.

David Denby
New Yorker
Top Critic
June 29, 2009

The movie rages on for a hundred and fifty minutes and then just stops, pausing for the next sequel.

Ben Mankiewicz
At the Movies
Top Critic
June 29, 2009

It is as if Michael Bay was saying "You think I've blown stuff up before? Ha-ha. Wait till you see this."

Ben Lyons
At the Movies
Top Critic
June 29, 2009

It's confusing and excessive and it just missed the mark completely.

Christopher Orr
The New Republic
Top Critic
June 26, 2009

If it sounds as though the script (credited to Ehren Kruger, Robert Orci, and Alex Kurtzman) was written in serial-novel form during an all-night mescaline bender, well, I have no evidence that it was not.

Ruth Hessey
MovieTime, ABC Radio National
Top Critic
June 26, 2009

I saw Revenge of the Fallen at Imax, which is probably why I managed to stay awake in what for me was the world's most boring movie.

Andrea Gronvall
Chicago Reader
Top Critic
June 25, 2009

The special effects are better and the dialogue slightly more humorous than in the first movie, but the anti-Arab subtext is repugnant.

Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
Top Critic
June 25, 2009

Transformers: The Revenge of The Fallen is beyond bad, it carves out its own category of godawfulness.

Full Review | Original Score: 0/4
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
Top Critic
June 24, 2009

The right notes are struck over and over for the target demo but there's not much for the rest of us. The special effects are no longer quite so special. A fact that doesn't stop Bay from committing more-is-less excesses.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic
June 24, 2009

Compared to this sequel, the first Transformers, which was released two years ago, ranks right up there with Kant's Critique of Pure Reason.

Betsy Sharkey
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic
June 24, 2009

Though battles are Transformers' raison d'être, before it's over, Revenge will collapse under the weight of far too many of them.

| Original Score: 2/5
Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
Top Critic
June 24, 2009

Bay seems to think that just showing us a bunch of brightly clashing metallic limbs (accompanied by lots of noise) is enough to make us faint in our seats with excitement.

Dana Stevens
Slate
Top Critic
June 24, 2009

The simplest thing Bay could have done to clarify the stakes of the robot wars would be to visually distinguish the robots from one another in some way. Armbands? Shirts and skins? "Hello, My Name Is" stickers?

Amy Biancolli
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic
June 24, 2009

A well-oiled, loudly revving summer action vehicle that does all that's required, and then some.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Robert Wilonsky
Village Voice
Top Critic
June 24, 2009

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is a bewildering, noisy, sloppy, cynical piece of work, a movie that sneers at the audience for 147 minutes and expects us to lap it up as entertainment -- and be grateful.

John Anderson
Washington Post
Top Critic
June 24, 2009

What's wrong here is that there's so much swirling, relentless action, indistinct robot characterizations and over-caffeinated techies loose on the special-effects machines that the movie, in mere seconds, achieves incoherence.

James Rocchi
MSN Movies
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

The best thing about "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" is that it's perhaps the funniest movie of the year ... "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" is not as bad as "Transformers"; somehow, in the face of long odds, it is actually worse.

Full Review | Original Score: 0/5
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

In Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, the director's subject is as blatant and consistent as his cluttered mise-en-scène.

Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

I've just spent 2 1/2 hours watching a movie and another hour thinking about what I saw and I have no earthly idea what Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is about.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

So what if he can't put a coherent series of shots together? Bay's going for pure sensation, and everyone knows dramatic continuity is for women and the weak.

Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Tom Maurstad
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

The action-chase-battle sequences of Transformers are cutting-edge and undeniably powerful.

| Original Score: 3/5
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Because Bay bombards you with so much, it's easy to forget that he can be a gifted technician.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

It's all pretty numbing.

Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Revenge of the Fallen may be a massive overdose of popcorn greased with motor oil. But it knows how to feed your inner 10-year-old's appetite for destruction.

Full Review | Original Score: B
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Transformers 2 is bigger, longer and louder than its predecessor. In this case, more is less.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Tom Long
Detroit News
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

A great grinding garbage disposal of a movie, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen isn't so much a narrative film as a cacophonous series of explosions intermittently interrupted by needless dialogue.

Full Review | Original Score: C-
Tasha Robinson
AV Club
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

For far too long, the movie consists of chase scenes, scrotum jokes, shrieked conversations, broad slapstick, and depressingly regressive ethnic caricatures.

Full Review | Original Score: C-
Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

The spectacular Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is a triumph of the producers' creed: Pound the senses, simulate emotion and milk the golden calf of the familiar like a mechanical farmhand.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

The comedy is what keeps Transformers 2 from turning into one colossal pileup of the monster trucks.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Tom Keogh
Seattle Times
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Fallen would do well to turn itself into a bland, eighteen-wheeler and drive out of town.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Everyone is overcaffeinated, everyone screams their lines, perhaps so they can hear each other over the explosions and the thunderous score.

Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

While LaBeouf proves, finally, to be a viable leading man, and Fox and her midriff earn the power-rock ballads that play every time they have a close-up, they ought to move aside sometimes.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

The first, comparatively lucid Transformers was a headache, but I sort of enjoyed it....Revenge of the Fallen is more like listening to rocks in a clothes dryer for 2 1/2 hours.

Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen dazzles the eye, numbs the mind and may cause deafness in some cases.

Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

At least the special effects in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen are remarkable: You never tire of the endless variations of robots Bay and his computer-generated effects crew come up with.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Claudia Puig
USA Today
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen is proof positive that not every summer action blockbuster has the mettle to be a franchise.

Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Call me old fashioned, but I like a little side story and character to go along with my order of big, loud special effects.

Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Rafer Guzman
Newsday
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

The magic isn't in the plot (no disrespect to returning screenwriters Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, joined by Ehren Kruger), but in the obvious delight Bay takes in boyish fantasies of battles, cars, aliens and babes.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

If you want to save yourself the ticket price, go into the kitchen, cue up a male choir singing the music of hell, and get a kid to start banging pots and pans together. Then close your eyes and use your imagination.

Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

Is it the worst movie of the summer? Possibly. Will everybody see it? Probably.

Full Review | Original Score: 1/5
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
Top Critic
June 23, 2009

There are enormous battle sequences -- you can practically see the dollar signs -- but little effort at telling a story.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Tom Huddlestone
Time Out
Top Critic
June 19, 2009

While it would be hard to make a case for 'Revenge of the Fallen' as 'good' in any normal sense of the word, it possesses such brute force that the viewer is left with two options: surrender, or suffer in silence.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Ray Bennett
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic
June 16, 2009

Fan boys will no doubt love it, but for the uninitiated it's loud, tedious and, at 147 minutes, way too long.

Jordan Mintzer
Variety
Top Critic
June 16, 2009

With machines that are impressively more lifelike, and characters that are more and more like machines, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen takes the franchise to a vastly superior level of artificial intelligence.