Transformers: Dark of the Moon (TheByteScene Review)

0.1 ruined-childhoods out of 4

0.1 ruined-ears out of 4

0.1 annoyed-reviewers out of 4

0.1 Freudian-worm-beasts out of 4

0.1 upset-fanboys out of 4

Calling Dark of the Moon an assault on the senses is a massive understatement. Calling the third Transformers film an audio/visual travest is being too soft on the film. Calling the movie the worst one ever made is the closest thing to the truth.

Though, it would be far too easy for me to attack the movie without discussing exactly what makes it so bad; in lieu of this, the first major problem is the plot. Sam Witwicky (played by Shia LaBeouf) has now graduated college and is forced to get a job. Throughout the course of his post graduate life, he manages to get caught up between another battle between the Autobots and the Decipticons, a warring race of giant robots that is somehow capable of transforming into machines. Along the way, a series of humans become involved and there’s also mention of a bridge that teleports planets. Loosely speaking, the plot of this movie is straightforward and basic; no amount of time was spent in writing the script and it shows. Major plot points, cliffhangers, and an overall lack of sense plague this film like a Babylonian wall.

Why are the Decipticons only revealing their master plan now? Why has NASA (or whomever is in charge) refused to divulge the most important information they have ever withheld to the specific group of people who exist specifically to help them deal with their giant robot related problems? Why did Megatron spend so much time worrying about the Allspark in the first movie, when all he had to do was find the location of this movie’s McGuffin (the Spacebridge that teleports planets and armies)? More importantly, why even bother with the McGuffin from any of the movies if the only device worth discussing is the bridge that is capable of interstellar conquest?

These are only a tiny fraction of the thousand or so questions that the viewers of TDOTM are faced with; though almost none of these questions are asked by any of the characters (except for Optimus Prime and even he doesn’t ask these questions with any real interest. Peter McCullen voices the Autobot leader with enough enthusiasm to show that he cares about the things that really matter; like his paycheque, for example). No, really, this movie has characters other than the giant robots and the hilarious bit is that the humans emote less than the machines. Though, therein lies a major distinction: the motivations of the humans and robots, though meant to be the same, are largely different. While the humans run around being ineffectual, the robots run around killing the humans. While the humans die in cities and towns around the world, the robots dance and continue shooting each other, all the while killing the race they have sworn to protect. While our heroes manage to blow up most of Chicago, we, as humans watching, are expected to cheer for them to continue.

I’m not joking when I say that more humans died due to the good Autobots than the bad Decipticons; I only wish that the script writers thought of this before they put pen to paper because the philosophical nature of Good and Evil would have been a far more interesting concept to watch than Shia LaBeouf running around screaming. That’s all he does; in fact,that’s all anyone does in this movie. First they show up, then the audience is expected to point and say “Hey, it’s that popular TV personality that we all know and love!” The characters then showcase their talent by being racist, heavily stereotypical, or brutally obnoxious, all in the least funny ways possible.

Popular (and amazing) actors such as John Malkovich, Patrick Dempsey, and Ken Jeong (who has the potential to be one of the funniest comedians to ever make it in Hollywood, if used properly) are all on screen for less than 2 minutes (excluding Dempsey) and as the audience is forced to sit through their exposition, they run around a set, do something immature or childish, and disappear (Ken Jeong is thrown out of a window and John Malkovich spars with a robot and is never seen or heard from again). It amazed me that an actor as developed as Malkovich was so thoroughly wasted. I suppose that’s one of the problems with a genuine summer blockbuster, however, there is no plot, and the audience is only there for the big names and special effects. I ask, however, is this what we really want? As a species of highly evolved creatures, capable of rational thought, do we really want directors like Michael Bay spitting out abysmal creations filled with nothing but loud noises, ugly explosions, and brilliant CGI?

I’ll get back to that in a moment, because so far, I’ve made a point of avoiding the film’s special effects, not because they’re terrible (they’re not), but because a good movie can no longer be judged on its special effects. In a day and age where technology has advanced far enough that humanity will most likely cross the uncanny valley within the next few years, a movie can no longer be allowed to be abysmal, just because the special effects are amazing. Therein lies the correlation to my earlier point; as a species of intelligent and evolved beings, do we really want directors like Michael Bay producing blockbusters with no redeemable quality, apart from the special effects? Considering that TDOTM managed to make over one billion dollars, my answer seems incredibly clear, but am I really asking for much? All I want is a decent summer movie with a coherent plot, good special effects, relatable characters and dialogue that doesn’t make me cringe everytime I open my damaged ears (from the last car that blew up for no good reason).

I understand that there are good summer movies, and I also understand that I don’t need to watch a movie, but I went into TDOTM with high hopes, even though the second film in the franchise disappointed me. I had hoped that Michael Bay would be able to bring back to vigour of the first film; I had hoped for an action movie with depth, and not an assault on the senses. I wasn’t expecting the film to be good, but I was hoping that it would amaze me in some way. Sadly, it did; I’m amazed that anyone allowed this travesty to be created.

Speaking honestly, I watched this movie a few months ago, when it was still out in theatres, and I tried to write a review then; I wasn’t able to sufficiently produce the review due to an altered state of mind (you’ll soon find out why). However, despite this fact, I recently watched the film again, except on DVD, and am now able to provide my opinion on this dreadful waste of time, money, and intellectual space.

Don’t watch this move. No, seriously, don’t watch it; you might just lose some brain cells in the process. Or worse, you might lose your entire head. This movie exhausted me both times I sat through it. In the theatre and on DVD, I was physically exhausted watching the film because it was so bad that my mind, quite literally, forced me to rest and recover from the barrage on my senses. In summation; this movie was terrible, but the effects were decent, and if you absolutely must find a way to throw away money, time, and brain capacity, please, by all means, watch Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

As always, this has been your Admin, the Avid Blogger; comment, subscribe, and criticize, and DO remember! Always look on the BYTE side of life!

-EK

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