The movie pulled in $201.2 million since opening Wednesday, the second-best result for a movie in its first five days, just behind "The Dark Knight" with $203.8 million. Even after its whopping $60.6 million opening day, "Revenge of the Fallen" was packing theaters, a sign that unlike critics, who mostly hated the movie, audiences felt they were getting their money's worth and were giving the flick good word of mouth.The article doesn't mentioned that while the critics on Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a drubbing, the community's average score is 68%. On Metacritic, the users score is 60 out of 100.
Critics "forget what the goal of the movie was. The goal of the movie is to entertain and have fun," said Rob Moore, vice chairman of Paramount, which is distributing "Transformers" for DreamWorks. "What the audience tells us is, `We couldn't be more entertained and having more fun.' They kind of roll their eyes at the critics and say, `You have no idea what you're talking about.'"
According to Paramount's exit polls, 91 percent of the audience thought the sequel was as good as or better than the first "Transformers," which received far better reviews.
Not so for the new "Transformers." On Rottentomatoes.com, a Web site that compiles critics' opinions, the sequel had only 38 positive reviews out of 187, a lowly 20 percent rating usually reserved for box-office duds.
Many critics who liked the movie had reservations, praising the movie's visual effects and relentless action but generally advising audiences to check their brains at the door. On Metacritic.com, a site that assigns ratings of zero to 100 based on movie reviews, "Revenge of the Fallen" received a 36, a lowly score barely above those given to recent box-office duds "Year One" and "Land of the Lost."
Of the eight movies that have grossed more than $400 million domestically, four scored 90 percent or higher on Rottentomatoes: "The Dark Knight," "Spider-Man," "E.T. the Extra-terrestrial" and "Star Wars." Two others, "Shrek 2" and "Titanic," topped 80 percent.
Overall, I think its the usual disconnect between critics and the audience and the different set of requirements each have. To me, any critic should answer a simple question when writing a movie review - "Is the movie entertaining?". When they fail to consider that question as part of their judgement, you get the wide disconnect between the audience and the critic that this movie illustrates. Most of the reviews I read focused on how loud the movie was, how weak the story, how insulting the jokes but few actually addressed that critical question - is it entertaining?
Critics tend to judge movies as a form of art looking for themes, acting tour de forces, scenary chewing and so forth. For the general audience, the goal is often a desire to escape from life for a few hours, to be entertained with anything beyond that is a nice bonus. Cutting off your brain and enjoying two hours of loud escapism isn't a bad thing. That is what Transformers 2 is for most, just two and half hours of great entertainment, something most critics failed to judge the movie on and something they should address if they want to truly reflect the audience they are trying to reach.