Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen Reviews
I reviewed this when it first came out and hated it. Returning to it, I kind of love it. It's bonkers and explodes with Michael Bay fever dream action. Its a weak story, but a strange as hell and often beautiful bad movie. I had a great time stepping into the mind of Michael Bay. It hurt my head, but was worth it.
Why I enjoyed it: More focus on each Transformers unique personalities, especially the Decepticons. They used the original voice actor for Megatron's henchman, Soundwave. Character models for the transformers were better defined they look more like robots than walking spare parts as in the original. Good mixture of suspense and humor. Some very intense action scenes as well as enjoyable human performances by LaBeouf, Fox and Totturo. Not to mention its quite obvious that Optimus Prime and company preferred working with the previous Washington administration than the current one.
Whats not to like about it: The last half hour is one massive battle that perhaps goes on too long. As well the final fight between antagonists despite the buildup is actually a little too quick and anti-climatic, especially given how long the battle before it lasted. That being said their is plenty of explosions and cool effects and transformations to keep Transformers and action flick fans happy. Other small peeves was some of the crude humor that often accompanies a Michael Bay film. As well the two mini Transformers may be annoying at first but I found them growing on me by the end of the film but they could be compared to Jar Jar Binks in the arena of hyper active CGI characters. Lastly this is a solid PG-13 film and not really appropriate for the young kids age group the original cartoon series targeted.
But the three main reasons to watch this film are Prime, Bumblebee and Jetfire. Yes I had them all when I was eight and yes its a blast to see these cartoon characters/toys come to life through the magic of CGI. However, its not just that. The Autobots are quite simply the good guys. The ultimate good guys. I mean would it not be cool if your car would come to life, fight against evil to protect you from both foe and ill intentioned females who seek to get you in trouble with your girlfriend (watch the movie to find out). Prime is like a robot General Washington, Jetfire a robot version of an old British veteran, and Bumblebee a robot Lassie. Its hard to find human characters in films that are so black and white these days. Meanwhile the Decepticons are everybit as bad and nasty as the Autobots are good.
So as for plot it comes down to a fight against good and evil as well as a human facing a destiny he was ignorant of. Yes its been done before but never with GIANT FIGHTING ROBOTS. This may be overly simplistic to the crowd who came to Transformers searching for an Orwellian plot. Yet I would say to such people...what are you stupid? Its A MOVIE BASED ON A CARTOON SHOW AND NOT SHAKESPEARE, GET OVER IT.
our heroes travel to Egypt to stop the Fallen.
I really enjoy the Autobots even more in this movie,
as i go for the first 2 Transformers,
while in dark of the moon and age of extinction
i really hated the secne where they kill my favorite Autobots
as they were killed off.
so this is why i go for the first 2 Transformers
so after Revenge of the Fallen they will live on in my opinion,
(and hopefully in the Godzilla and Transformers Crossover Movie.)
Clocking in at an hour and 49 minutes, Bay's epic length sequel features machine-like entities shape-shifting from various vehicles into gigantic robots with deadly appendages that discharge explosive broadsides whenever they unleash their titanic fury. The problem is Bay neglects the narrative for these massive transformations. When the Hasbro creations aren't changing from innocent machines into destructive robots, Bay and his scribes are slinging visual and verbal jokes as fast as you can blink. In other words, "Transformers: The Revenge of the Fallen" lacks suspense until the last quarter hour when the flesh & blood performers inject some emotional gravity into this superficial smackdown between good and evil alien robots.
"Transformers: The Revenge of the Fallen" opens with a prologue in 17,000 B.C. when mankind initially runs afoul of the alien robots, before Bay jumps ahead to the 21st century when mankind and the Autobots have formed an alliance. U.S. Army Major Lennox (Josh Duhamel of "Turistas") and Sgt. Epps (Tyrese Gibson of "2 Fast 2 Furious"), command an elite squad codenamed NEST that consists of Autobots collaborating with U.S. and British soldiers to smoke out rogue Decepticons hiding anywhere in the world. The opening Shanghai sequence where NEST routs a gargantuan unicycle that wrecks more havoc than Godzilla ever visited on Tokyo gets things started off on the right track. The unicycle warns our heroes that the worst is about to befall them in the form of a monstrous entity named 'The Fallen.'
The sequel focuses on a thousand year old object called 'the matrix of knowledge' that provides loads of power to whoever acquires it. The scene shifts from Shanghai to the Witwicky homestead in California where Sam (Shia LaBeouf of "Disturbia") announces his plans to attend a prestigious Ivy League university and try to live the life of a normal twentysomething. Sam informs Bumblebee, the yellow Camaro that morphs into a monstrous robot, that he cannot accompany him. Freshmen aren't allowed to have cars on campus. Incredibly, Sam is leaving his super hottie girlfriend, Mikaela Banes (Megan Fox), who looks sexier than ever. After Sam's parents, Ron Witwicky (Kevin Dunn) and Judy (Julie White), get our hero situated in his dorm, they head off to Europe for a vacation. Sam and Mikaela are having their first relationship struggle. She wants him to utter the L-word "love" but he is content only to tell her that he "adores" her and they plan to maintain their relationship coast-to-coast via the Internet.
As Sam is unpacking, a shard of the Allspark falls out of his clothing from the first movie and weird things start to happen. Remember, the AllSpark was a mystical cube that contained the key to the Transformers' existence and was thought destroyed in the original movie. Optimus Prime shows up soon afterward and explains trouble is brewing and Sam has a role to play in its resolution, but our hero refuses to participate.
Of course, what Sam wants and what Sam ends up doing are two entirely different matters. In one of his classes, he scans an astronomy book from cover to cover and accuses Einstein of being wrong. Furiously, Sam starts scribbling enigmatic symbols. Later, the Decepticons return in force, steal parts of the AllSpark, excavate Megatron from the bottom of the ocean floor, sink half the U.S. Navy, and set out to destroy not only the Autobots but also the Earth. The Decepticons' primary target is Sam and they perform a full body scan to obtain vital information.
"Transformers" boasts some spectacular scenes. For example, a robot versus robot mêlée around Egypt's Giza Necropolis, with the evil Devastator, a remarkably mammoth mechanoid, absorbing several construction vehicles so it can scramble atop the peak of a pyramid, is truly a sight to behold. Again, Bay and his scribes cannot inhibit their humor and they show two huge wrecking balls dangling like genitalia between its massive thighs. The scene where the Decepticons resurrect Megatron from the bottom of the ocean is exhilarating to watch. The last thing that you should be thinking about is the nincompoop who decided not to melt Megatron done into a pile of metal so nothing like this could happen. Unfortunately, had they done so it is likely that there would not have been a sequel.
Mind you, "Transformers: The Revenge of the Fallen" qualifies as a big, dumb, noisy action-paced sci-fi saga that doesn't make any sense and revels in its larger-than-life idiocy. Humans take a backseat to the fracas between the mechanoids until the final moments when only Sam can save the day. Unfortunately, the humor gets entirely out of hand. Sam's college roommate follows him around the globe and spends more time screaming in terror rather than fighting. Agent Simmons (John Turturro) is back acting just as flaky as ever, too. The Ghetto twin Autobots are as obnoxious as Jar Jar Binks was in the "Star Wars" prequel. The gags and the pranks displace the drama. The language is often rude and verges on the obscene. The surprises are few and far between. Without enumerating them, we are asked to believe that essential characters can die and never be revived. Anybody who believes for an instant that the Decepticons will vanquish the Autobots is clearly delusional, though it would have been a nice cliffhanger touch on Bay's part to stage an ending similar to "Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back."
So a quick few words on what I thought of the first movie.
Transformers 1 HATED: - Megan Fox's 'acting'. It's absolutely all form and no charisma; - most of the Transformers talking; - the scene where the Transformers are hiding in the backyard of Sam's house while he searched for the spectacles in his room (just seemed to take all the seriousness away from the Transformers and portray them as silly).
Transformers 1 LOVED: - watching the Transformers battle each other; - Shia Labeouf doing his great mix of nutty comedy/nervous acting.
Transformers 2 - HATED: - Film tends to sag in the middle when the action slows down to progress some of the silly plot. Transformers is not a film about plot, it's about the action - just keep it coming and don't try to make a story from it because it's RIDICULOUS; - Megan Fox still looks amazingly hot but cannot act to save her life. You may as well just put a cardboard cut-out of her next to Shia Labeouf and it'll do the same job for a fraction of the cost; - A scene towards the end of the movie where there is a small "dream sequence" of sorts, and the word "destiny" is mentioned. I almost vomited. The word 'ridiculous' doesn't quite do it justice; - The girl that Sam meets at college and who she is. I am simply AMAZED that they actually let that whole thing get put into the movie - it just doesn't fit into the Transformers world and leaves stupendous plot holes and questions; - There isn't enough slow-motion in the action sequences for you to take it all in - Transformers trying to be "funny" - yuck.
Transformers 2 - LOVED: -The action is mind-blowing. This is what you go to see the film for, and apart from the slow-mo flaw, it's pretty breathtaking and surprisingly violent too; - Sam and his parents are genuinely hilarious.
And that's it.
I went to see Robots doing battle, and for 90% of the movie that's what I got. This isn't a film for those looking for a smart plot or realistic story lines and physical motion - this is something to visually gawk at, and sonically admire. This is special effects without having to think about it. There are plenty of other films that showcase superb character development and plot, but this isn't it and nor does it try to be.
This is a live-action movie that you could easily imagine being a cartoon. If that's what you want to see I think you'll enjoy this as pure entertainment. If you didn't like the first movie I can't see how you would like this one, but for those who liked watching metal smash into other metal, you'll be buzzing from this flick.For the most part, this film is the decent thrill ride that the movie going audience is looking for. As an action moving, it has scenes to astound and thrill any avid fan. As a science fiction movie it stands reasonably well. It doesn't over-explain things and doesn't throw in concepts as central plot points that are blatantly impossible (super novas that threaten entire galaxies, I'm talking about you Star Trek). The movie also does relatively well on a comedic note, and from a standpoint of general plot. Though others have complained about the central importance of Sam's role being unlikely and a retread of the first film, it follows through logically from where the first film left off.
Though the film is a lot of fun, it does have its flaws. Unfortunately the humor descends to the low brow a little too often. Also the Autobot twins that Michael Bay apparently loved so much were frightfully annoying. They did also lean towards offensive cultural stereotypes a little heavily. It is unfortunate because a couple of their funnier lines could have been delivered just as well by completely different characters. In fact they might have been funnier coming from a more straight laced Autobot. The use of the twins in pure Jar Jar Binks fashion (though not quite as irritating) was unfortunate given how many underused robots there were. The comment about Sam's roommate's bravery could have been unexpectedly hilarious coming out of Arcee.
Most of the other glitches in the film were relatively minor and not worth mentioning, though the writers could use a geography lesson. If you enjoy action films and don't need a deeper artistic message, Revenge of the Fallen is well worth the watch.