September 20, 2014

GND Movie Review: Transformers, Age of Extinction

I have decided to start giving you movie reviews that actually tell you the truth about movies, from the perspective of an ordinary girl who happens to love action movies. 

I do not intend to give you exact counts of profanity or nude scenes.  I will not explain the director's or producer's intentions, as revealed in their latest interviews.

I will tell you whether it was worth sitting through, or not.  And whether I would show it to my kids.

And there will almost certainly be spoilers, so be warned.


Saturday is movie night here at the Home Front.  The whole family settled in with plates of delicious pizza and turned on Vudu to see what movies were available.  Transformers, Age of Extinction was there - to buy, but not to rent.  This didn't seem to be an issue, because:  it's rated PG-13, we've seen a couple of the previous ones and enjoyed them, and the trailer looked pretty awesome. 

I feel that we were misled.  Seriously.

Here's what I was expecting:  Bad humans are hunting the Autobots.  Good humans (a father and daughter this time, instead of annoying teenagers awash in hormones) step up and fight to defend the Autobots.  There are epic battles and cool CG effects.  The good robots defeat the bad robots.  And there are Dinobots. 


The Good:  Some neat CG scenes.  The obligatory scenes where Optimus Prime (and the other Autobots) swap their old style for fresh new paint.  Lots of roaring engines and cool cars.  Optimus laying about wickedly with his cyber-sword and beating the heck out of the bad robots, while yelling "Charge!"  Some Dinobots (If you actually survived the first 95% of the movie without a) your brain leaking out of your ears, or b) giving yourself a hernia from laughing so hard.)  The guy who stupidly trusted the government to reward him for turning in the whereabouts of Optimus Prime got blasted, which he deserved, IMO.

The Bad:  see The Ugly (below)

The Ugly:  I caught 2 really bad profanities (or at least, it sounded like that word, so in my book, it counts) and I literally cannot number how many other "milder" profanities there were.  How this movie got a PG-13 rating, I cannot fathom.  --And I should note that I am not a purist when it comes to profanity; I don't like it, but usually if it is sparse enough to be muted out, or if it clocks in at a "conversational" level (not the way I speak, but the way many people speak, sadly), I can deal with it.  This movie was atrocious, and most of it had that we're-writing-this-language-in-to-seem-really-bad feel to it.

The plot was so unnecessarily convoluted and stupid.  Really.  Really.  Horrendous.  My 8-year-old could and has come up with better stories.

I thought by swapping out the annoying teenager mainstays of the franchise, we'd be avoiding the boyfriend-girlfriend banter, the short shorts, etc.  Nope.

The trailer seemed to present the father and daughter as a family taking care of each other, sacrificing to keep each other safe, etc.  Actually, they fight and squabble through the whole movie.  Once, when the dad has risked his life to save his totally helpless, whiny, obnoxious, and rebellious daughter, she totally bypasses him and runs into the arms of her boyfriend.  Gag.

Final Thoughts:  It was like they set out to make a parody of a Transformers movie.  It was so bad that half of my sons didn't even stick around to see the ending.  I find myself  wondering why I wasted 2 hours of my life watching it.  (Or maybe it was longer than that?  I don't know.  It felt like an   e   t   e   r   n   i   t   y.)

And I feel very guilty that we put $18 in the pockets of the people responsible for this movie.  I mean, really, you have cool CG and Transformers; how hard do you have to work to screw that up?!


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