Monday, September 21, 2009

Review - Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Oddly enough, a little theatre near where I live still had this playing, so rather than do something productive or meaningful, I wasted nearly 2.5 hours of my life.

1000 gold pieces to the man who brings me Michael Bay's head on a pike. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (aka How to Blow Shit Up and Exploit Megan Fox) is just as bad as the abomination he spawned in 2007, only longer and more illogical. It's clearly designed for people with an attention span of less than a minute. In fact, it looks like it was designed BY people with an attention span of less than a minute! The camera can't keep still for a one second, and the story is so weak that they need to crap out a new action sequence every five minutes. All that clanging, writhing, contorting metal... it's like a gigantic free-for-all robot orgy (robots under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult).

All kidding aside, I'm not being entirely fair to Bay's crew. I can only say “bravo” to the FX artists and sound designers, who clearly put a lot of work into this project, and are largely responsible for its popularity (but not as much as the lady in the photograph above). One has to hand it to Bay's cast as well. There aren't any brilliant performances, but it can't be easy running around in front of blue screen for hours and hours pretending to take this seriously.

Oscar nods for VFX and at least one (probably both) of the Sound categories look reasonable, but I have suspicions: The fact that its predecessor was surprisingly (and wrongfully) shut out of those three categories on Oscar Night 2008 suggest that AMPAS is not impressed with the franchise. Still, the individual sound and FX branches have never been adverse to bad films, but with a number of more respected science-fiction and fantasy flicks having already proven themselves this summer (and with more potential contenders to come), it's possible for Transformers to be squeezed out.

*1/2 out of ****

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