Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, No More than Meets the Eye (Devil’s Advocate Review)
Of the hyped blockbusters of 2009, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen was among the top of my “to-watch list” this summer. Think about it, it has everything a summer blockbuster should have; action, adventure, explosions (It set a Guinness Book World Record in this category) and of course state of the art special effects. In the end the movie suffers from the Michael Bay sophomore curse: poor acting and a storyline that leaves one scratching your head.
It has become very apparent to my colleagues and I here at the Devil’s Advocates Movie Review Blog (Yes, that is a shameless plug) that Michael Bay believes the only way he can build a superior sequel is to go bigger, louder and faster. Although this is the formula that usually brings success in sport fields across the world, it does not translate 100% on the silver screen. While we get what we expect, that is all we get. Action, adventure, explosions and of course state of the art special effects (See what I mean, annoying isn’t it when you’ve read the same line just a minute ago and are expecting it). Michael Bay, by trying to kick everything up a notch succeeds in even furthering audiences away instead of bringing them into the story. The prime example (okay who didn’t see this transition coming?) is the Transformers fight scenes. They are too fast, and so over the top that you can’t even enjoy them and make note of the sequence of action. Your eyes are focused and during these sequences, I felt I left my corrective vision contacts at home because they were a blur.
Before I talk about the acting I want to say that I did like the fact that Michael Bay brought back most of the main actors from the original. That is where I believe he missed an opportunity to build on the human relationships established in the original film. The interaction between Sam and Mikaela (Shia LaBeouf and Megan Fox) which in the original was magic in this sequel seemed forced and tired. The expanded role of Sam’s mom Judy (Julie White) while understandable, resulted in a painful realization that some sort of cliché use of a mother in a movie would be used and it was…often. The use of Major Lennox (Josh Duhamel) who is in charge on the human element of NEST, is put simply, underwhelming. Despite these examples I felt that their was raw chemistry that just went untapped mainly due to the plot.
Here is a cold hard fact…the plot of the movie was incomplete. The general concept was good but the execution and attempts to explain the twists and turns left us wondering, what just happened. While we attempted to process the new information the action moved us forward so fast that we were left in a state of confusion. Now I do not now if the writers strike was partly to blame for this incompleteness but what I do know is I left the theater with questions of how did certain things happen.
For all these reasons I give Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen 2 out 0f 5 pitchforks
In reality because it does deliver on the basic qualifications of what a Summer blockbuster is supposed to be, and allows those of us who rushed home after school to turn on the T.V. and watch the cartoon to enjoy these characters again; I give it 3 out of 5 pitchforks.
In the end Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is no more than meets the eye.