It’s 4th of July weekend . . . America’s birthday . . . logic would dictate that this is the perfect weekend to release Captain America: The First Avenger . . . but here in La-La-Land, where fantasy abounds, there’s little use for logic. In fact, there seems to be a detritus of logic over at Paramount Pictures. Instead of releasing the highly anticipated comic book movie about the first, and most patriotic, Avenger, they dropped a deuce . . . in the form of a third Transformers movie. That’s right, it’s Transformers: The Search for More Money . . . er . . . I mean . . . Dark of the Moon . . . yeah, that’s the ticket. And guess what, I hated it.
Like the titular robots in disguise, the plot of any Transformers movie is essentially always the same, things are just moved around a bit: the Autobots are in a race against the Decepticons to discover the secret of some lost ancient Cybertronian relic. In Transformers everyone was after the “All Spark,” in Revenge of the Fallen it’s the “Matrix of Leadership,” and in Dark of the Moon everyone’s after “the Pillars.” And of course, each time Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) gets caught in the middle of the ridiculously convoluted plot and somehow manages to Forrest Gump his way through it . . . speaking of which, there is some god-awful CGI in attempt to use the likenesses of President Kennedy and President Nixon a la Forrest Gump that’s just shameful. Kennedy looks like he’s right out of a bad video game.
Now, it’s not like I hate Michael Bay or his movies . . . I just haven’t liked one of his movies in eight years (2003’s Bad Boys 2) and with each passing film they seem to be getting worse and worse. I like spectacle; I like action; I like big-budget blockbusters . . . when it’s good . . . well, entertaining anyway. Aren’t action movies supposed to be fun?
Transformers: Dark of the Moon is a two and a half hour-long movie with only one twelve-minute long section of entertaining action. Yes, the siege of Chicago is pretty awesome, particularly the toppling of the building with our heroes inside, but one awesome action scene does not a movie make. And I wish I could say the rest is silence, instead it’s all annoying, hackneyed exposition marred by painfully contrived attempts at humor, which only serve to highlight how little fun you’re having.
Then there’s Rosie Huntington-Whiteley . . . she makes Megan Fox look like Meryl Streep, but it doesn’t really matter because her character–Carly–is an unbelievable joke anyway. Even when captured and held prisoner, she somehow finds time to change from one designer outfit into another. And the product placement is kinda ridiculous, for the final battle the Autobots randomly show up covered in decals advertising major products and corporations. At this rate, I wouldn’t be surprised if the actors in Michael Bay’s next project spend the entire movie in jumpsuits covered with advertisements, a movie about Nascar perhaps . . .
It’s just all so bad, so very bad. It’s not even worth the time to truly expound all the ways in which this movie sucks; I already lost the two and half hours of my life watching it. The plot is full of holes larger than the Grand Canyon, yet still predictable. The “action” is rote and uninspired. I will say this, John Malkovich has some funny moments that are actually entertaining, sadly they are few and far between. Less like watching a movie and more like watching a Ritalin kid have a conniption fit while playing with his toys, Transformers: Dark of the Moon stays true to the Transformers franchise, it’s yet another annoying contrivance that isn’t worth your time or money.
Grade: F+ (the + is for John Malkovich)