I knew very little about the Transformers. I remember watching the commercials for the toys all the time as a kid. When I would watch Cartoon Network (the only network I grew up watching back in 2003), I thought they were the coolest ads ever. Not only did the toys look awesome but the music is what sums up its awesomeness. Then I heard there was going to be a movie adapted from these transforming robots. I had a feeling this would be “more than meets the eye”.
Years after becoming a massive hit in theaters, I sat down to watch the first of Michael Bay’s noisy and overblown Transformers franchise. Despite its big problems, I quite enjoyed it to an extent.
The movie stars Shia LaBeouf (delivering a solid performance) as Sam Witwicky, a teenager who gets excited about buying his first car. He sets his eyes on a 1970s Chevy Camaro. To his surprise, his car isn’t technically a car. It’s actually an Autobot from the planet Cybertron named Bumblebee. He was sent down by Optimus Prime (magnificently voiced by Peter Cullen) to Earth to protect Sam. Why? Because the Autobots are at war with the Decepticons, led by Megatron (also magnificently voiced by Hugo Weaving) who are trying to take possession of an ancient cube that holds a different power for the different races of alien robots. Sam, along with his girlfriend Mikaela Banes (Megan Fox), are caught in the middle of this war that would either protect or destroy mankind.
To simply put it, the special effects and action sequences are beyond impressive. Michael Bay is a master of blowing just about everything up. Especially in most of the wall-to-wall action, he knows how to direct something big, massive, loud, and thrilling. With a variety of expensive cars, trucks, airline jets transforming into giant alien robots, you know Bay is going to deliver an exhilarating action finale. It doesn’t matter at all if they serve little to no purpose behind them. This is why CGI was invented.
Although far from perfect, Transformers has a lot of problems. The obvious one is Megan Fox. I admit she is unbelievably attractive, but that doesn’t necessarily mean she has enough to portray an interesting character. Some of the humor is a bit droll (not to mention the appalling masturbation discussion), some of the dialogue is pretty bad, and the supporting characters are quite forgettable. Nonetheless, this is an enjoyable introduction to an otherwise bad franchise.