Thursday, June 30, 2011

Transformers: Dark of the Moon Review

I really wanted to love Transformers: Dark of the Moon. I am a fan of thinking that you have to approach movies with the right mindset to enjoy them. For an expensive summer movie action flick, you know going in that you probably have to check your brain at the door. Don't look for plot holes, don't look for characterization, and don’t try to make sense of the motivations for the bad guys. While you hope it isn’t always the case, Dark of the Moon is that type of movie. Just sit back with your popcorn and enjoy the spectacle that the movie’s director Michael Bay is a master at creating. Bay brings his best as a top action director but with it is the usual pluses and minuses where everything is in service to the visual instead of the story and characters. The problem is Transformers is capable of more than just being a visual experience.

The story by Ehren Kruger is straight forward and follows the formula from the previous films. It opens with more background on the Transformers’ civil war and how it ended up tying into the 1960s space race. It tosses in another history revision with the Chernobyl nuclear accident as a means to introduce and explain why a certain Decepticon character may not have been available for Megatron's previous two attempts at world conquest. Instead of an All Spark or Matrix, this time is a important piece of Space Bridge transporter technology. The villain, who will remain nameless for spoiler reasons, is the main focus causing all other Decepticon characters both new and old to be sidelined for most of the movie. Once again the Autobots on the verge of defeat rally behind the leadership of Optimus Prime as they attempt to stop the Decepticons from enslaving the world to rebuild their dead planet of Cybertron with the city of Chicago as the final battleground.

There are many things done right with the usual Bay eye for action and visuals. The movie is wonderful eye candy, especially in the last 45 minutes for the Battle of Chicago. The destruction is huge with clashes between the Autobots and Decepticons that should get even non-Transformers fans excited. ILM and Digital Domain brought their best and it shows in every frame of Transformer action and destruction. If anything those fights are often a little too brief and makes you wish they could have gone at it for more than a few swings.

The 3-D in the movie is impressive and immersive, especially in a dangerous flight through the Chicago skyline by NEST as Decepticons try to shoot them down. While Bay did cut back on his usual filming style, his version of cutting back is still excessive by most standards. Often times the best visuals were when he pulled back and allowed the camera to be still, letting the scene carry the moment. However, for every one of that you got a half dozen moments of the typical Bay style that nearly ruin the fantastic visual effects and fight sequences.

If given a choice, see this movie in 3D even though you will likely have to deal with the "sunglasses" effect anecdotal evidence indicates theaters ignored Bay's bulb brightness pleas. The sound effects and score are loud and up to the task as expected. If anything, Michael Bay's continued distrust of a strong musical score to provide the emotional impact he wants to a scene caused some visuals to have less punch than they could have.

The actors do their jobs without a problem, keeping you in the movie. Rosie Huntington-Whitely as Carly provides additional eye candy as the replacement for Megan Fox and does just fine as sexpot/damsel in distress. The role was insignificant enough I don't even think you can judge her acting skills by it except to say she didn't ruin any moments. Patrick Dempsey joins the cast as a suave, rich boss of Carly that has a hidden agenda. He plays the role just right with enough to convey his power without bringing it over the top. Shia LaBeouf does Sam with his usual skill.

New supporting cast members include Frances McDormand (CIA director Mearing), John Malkovich (Sam's boss) and John Turturro (Seymour Simmons, now rich book author) pretty much come in and cash their paychecks as their roles are not exactly a stretch of their acting skills. The voice acting is solid as always with Peter Cullen bringing the usual gravitas to the proceeding even in situations that don't normally track as typical Optimus Prime behavior. Leonard Nimoy's as the voice of Sentinel Prime makes him a near equal to Cullen in the gravitas department, also selling his character's motivations with skill, including the ubiquitous Star Trek related line that had a whole different meaning in this movie.

The comedy moments remain a problem but this time around there was a lot less misses in large part thanks to Shia's comedic timing. Alan Tudyk (Firefly) as Simmon's assistance brings his usual unappreciated comedic genius, making the best of a pointless role. The Autobots Wheelie and Brains replace the infamous Twins as the Transformers comedy team, with each voiced by Tom Kenny and Reno Wilson who had voiced the twins in the previous installment. Provided with better material, both do a much better job with their moments. The less said about Ken Jeong's brief part the better.

At two and a half hours the movie is too long. In an effort to save his efforts on the final act, the first hour and half can drag at times as the story moves from plot point to plot point. Thirty to forty minutes could have been easily cut and still connected the necessary dots if the script remained as clever as early promise of the secret moon landing mission.

False dilemmas are created for very little payoff and often with no real point to the overall story. Sam wants to work with the Autobots but denied by Mearing who doesn't seem him as up to the task, calling him "a Messenger" not a warrior. Sam has to prove her wrong with Simmons help to make connections the CIA was incapable of that took about 15 minutes of story. That is fine except it all became moot in the very next scene that followed with a betrayal and death. There are a lot of scenes that occur for no other reason than to either poorly moves things along or just for the spectacle it provides.

The visual of an office building collapsing with the human heroes trapped inside was exciting but it added nothing to the story except that Michael Bay probably thought it would look cool (and it did) but at the expense of bringing the conflict between the Autobots and Decepticons to a halt for the audience. What were they doing while the humans were sliding down a building? Apparently doesn't matter because the visual effects look good.

When Bay did make cuts they often come at the expense of the story. One moment Optimus Prime needs his trailer for his flight pack, later he suddenly comes flying to the rescue. Bumblebee saves Sam yet again, the next he is a prisoner along with other Autobots that somehow got captured. Having the visual of the office building was more important than the story of how those other events occurred.

The problems with making decisions that don't service the story but the visual extend to the characters. None of the human and Transformer characters is giving any meaningful character arcs. A lot of additional Transformers were added to the "cast" but while they are cool looking mass of robots, they were never defined as individual characters. Some really didn't serve any purpose except to provide another car for Bay to show off. A major character dies, but you wouldn’t know. Fans in the audience will probably react more than the characters on screen do. Not because they probably wouldn’t but because once again the visual of massive “bayhem” must win out.

The Decepticons suffered the most indignities. Megatron is sidelined for most of the movie. Shockwave, while visually powerfully looking, did little but stand around and stare (even in slow mo for one scene) while his giant metal worm did most of the work. Except for Laserbeak who could transform into whatever the story needed him to be, none of the others served any meaningful purpose except provide awesome combat visuals. Instead of having a single villain doing impressive and frightening things, you have three bad guys that do very little but talk and act as cannon fodder. The scale of the threat is not conveyed by the actions of the main Decepticons but by the visual of a devastated Chicago as minions scours the streets and show exactly what a Decepticon gun does to human flesh.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon suffers for the same reason the entire franchise has - the limitations of Michael Bay as a director. Again and again, given a choice between making a better story, a better character or a better visual - the visual wins out to the detriment of character and story. It is possible to service all three but Michael Bay doesn’t seem to know that. Bay doesn't question if the visual is needed. He doesn't care if the action sequence advances the story or the character. He just wants it to look cool. The movie is chock full of visual candy. Whether it is a slow camera move on Rosie’s body or the frenzy of multiple Transformers fighting each other, there is much to enjoy looking at with the 3D bringing it to another level. There is just very little to engage your brain or make you care what happens to the characters on the screen. Success or failure doesn't matter, nor who dies except you will have fun talking about how they died. A transformer as a concept and universe of characters is capable of much more but that potential remains untapped. This is one of Michael Bay's best efforts at creating a great visual experience but as a storyteller he still has a lot to learn. 3/5


  1. Wow! Well written and thought-out... I see the points you make, and can agree with all of them. Too bad the franchise succeeds (and raises the bar) in only one of the 3 areas: visuals; You're right, story and characters lose out to "making everything look cool". Well said, in any case... nice work.

  2. Well said.
    As many others I have followed this page since around the time you started it before the first movie. Thanks for having a place to geek out and enjoy a few years of TF excitement. Hopefully you'll be here for future TF movies


  3. I loved it. I thought it was the best movie ever.

    By the way, I would love to know when the SoundWave, SideSwipe, and... Dino/Mirage and Que/Wheeljack toys are coming out.

  4. I agree with everything you've written here. Bay needs someone to drag him to a playwriting class to learn about characters and consequences. If he did that, while still providing the visuals, his films would make even more money by sustaining a mainstream audience.

  5. ive always saw directors as......well directors, not storytellers...i think ill love it, but if any storytelling blame is to be had i think it lies with mr krueger.

  6. Hi, I am from Germany. I´m reading your Blog since 2007.
    I watched the movie yesterday. I agree with you in all points. I hope the Franchise will go on without Bay. Thank you very very much for your super work in the last years. Your Blog ist the best!

  7. I totally agree with you on your review 100%! You also missed that it looked like Shockwave died twice....Once by Epps and crew, then by Optimus Prime. I really hoping for a reboot in 5 years or sooner!!

  8. I agree with you, wholeheartedly :)

    The movie this time lacked the emotional impact, which I felt was more present in the 2nd movie. And the discontinuities in the movie are really very glaring - as you've mentioned above.

    I'm not sure if there will be a 4th movie, seems very unlikely, but if it does, it needs a fresh reboot.

    Colin from KL, Malaysia

  9. Well I know one thing....if TF4 comes....their is only THREE last hopes...... STEVEN SPIELBERG......J.J. ABRAMS........ JAMES CAMERON. Besides....I WANT MY FING UNICRON!!!!!!! SAVE TRANSFORMERS FURIOUS THREE.....SAVE OUR MOVIES!

  10. Fair enough review.

    Though I myself liked Ken Jeong; but that's probably because it's basically the same character he plays on Community (who I enjoy).

    I also kinda thought the movie suffered pacingwise, though most of my complaints were mainly centered around how they put too much focus on the building. ESPECIALLY given how there's zero payoff from the whole scene as they don't accomplish anything really.

    Re: Prime and his jetpack though, that took some dot connecting, sadly. As I figured it was because the Driller was no longer guarding it since it was busy demolishing that building.

  11. cannot agree more...
    nice plot but can get better...
    the first time i watch the movie in 3d 2 days ago, feel like 'is this a transformers movie or what? almost plotless and less character development"...
    the 2nd time i watch it, it seems like i can give a little credit for the team for making the whole franchise...
    hoping for the best reboot for this movie... and please...
    1. no more michael bay
    2. listen to the fans. there r 2 type of people, one who like to watch movies only, and the other is tf fans.
    3. if u wanna make a srious movie, please no stupid joke. i cannot see whrere is 'more darker movie' this time. make it like 'dark knight', that's real dark movie.

  12. Thanks Blog Master I've been waiting to read what you thought about DOTM.

    I also wanted to be awed by this movie, especially since Bay and company dropped the ball in ROTF & ontop of that he actually said he was sorry about how fast the final fight between The Fallen & Optimus was. I really thought he would get it right for his last movie and to be disappointed again just makes it easier to say thank god Bay is done with Transformers bring on the new guy & the reboot. I also don't understand after failing with the Twins for example Bay just wanted to keep inventing his own Transformers...WHY their were plenty that weren't used in all three movies, instead we got the Dreads, Brains, and the Wreckers...all a waste, then he took Mirage & Wheeljack and changed their names to "Dino" & "Q"(which I hoped Nelson was just joking about) which made no sense to do other than to piss in the face of all Trans fans, and Q looked like crap anyway. Shockwave must of been the long lost brother of the Fallen because he was as big of a whimp, who also only said one freaking word. They should've left Soundwave up in space they only brought down to kill Q cause he really didn't do anything else. Where did Megatron get his truck mode from ...I guess they have some Mad Max looking trucks in Africa that he scanned. Like I said earlier see ya Bay don't let the door hit you in the ass.....ASS

  13. As a few other commenters here have already stated, I too would like to take this moment to say "Thank you" for all the hard work you have put into this blog for so many years. I am truly amazed at your level of dedication and what you have achieved. I found this blog on a random search and for some reason kept checking back because there was always a new tid bit of info, either about casting, script writing, scene development, budgeting, etc. I have learned so much through your writing (and about the entire extended universe of TF) that I now thoroughly enjoy debating movies with friends because I know so much more about the entire scope of movie making. Your blog became an addiction for me (a good one though!) that kept me coming back between the long periods between movies, thereby extending my excitement throughtout the entire trilogy. Over the years three different girlfriends have witnessed my obsession with these movies and with my constantly checking news on your blog. I hope you know what a great thing you've given all of us here. And although my main interest was and will always be TF, I now also check daily for news about The Hobbit and Star Trek. Amazing job here man, exceptionally well done.

  14. I agree with 90% of what you said but I didn't care for Wheelie and Brainiacs humor for most of their time. I enjoyed Jeong's brief part much more.

  15. please give this franchise over to Christopher Nolan!!!

  16. Well put review. I totally agree with you. I've just watched it again for a second time and have my third set of tickets locked and ready to roll out.

    It's been an honor and a pleasure to be on this blog since 2007. I'll always be That Bumblebee Cosplayer Dude for you man. I just don't do birthdays. :P haha

  17. The problem with people is that they are only capable of following surface narrative. This thin coat of varnish is something directors put there just so morons can look at something while the real film goes on underneath. The three transformers films are very rich in the sense that the "dream-like" logic beneath the shots and the plot deal directly with very deep mythology-like stuff. I´m not saying that Bay made them that way "on purpose" but following his desire without any restrain he arrives at the core of the summer blockbuster. You can see the film a symptom. You may not be able to see the narrative into witch every image of the film fits, because de "surface story" falls apart as a consequence of the unbridled ID of the director, but I can assure you that narrative is there, and it is fucking glorious. If it interests anyone, read Rob Ager´s analysis on "E.T." the logic by witch the transformers movies operate is very similar and may help you enjoy what I think are three trudly awe-inspiring pieces of art.

    I know of course that sounds like bull to all of you, I just type this for the hypothetical soul to whom it might make sense.

  18. What exactly did the wreckers do? did i miss something?

  19. Feris Othman6/30/2011 2:57 AM

    My problem with this movie is that some Decepticons were recycled characters. If you look closely enough. Other than that it was awesome. My problem with ALL three movies that Optimus never said the full line, "Autobots, transform and roll out."

  20. I believe he said " Autobots, Roll Out!" In the first film, but I guess I see your point, but its just a minor nuisance really.

  21. Great review. Spot on. Just got back from seeing the movie and it was underwhelming compared to what it could be in the hands of the right director. In addition to all the points you made I'll add this one - Bay has a penchant for cramming in too many fast shots into a movie rather than fewer slow developing ones. It's a fatal flaw and one that detracts from all his movies. e.g. you can fill in two hours with 60 two-minute shots or 30 four-minute shots that let you enjoy the scene/sequence/visuals/gravitas of the situation, but he tries to cram in too much.

    Love that Bay brought Transformers to the live action genre but this franchise can be so much more in the right hands.

  22. thank you so much for this blog, i can hounestly say ive checked it everyday for the last 4 years. That being said i so badly wanted this movie to succeed where rotf had failed, but thats not the case. Micheal bay has failed tf fans on so many levels and i would consider his decisions a slap in the face. I know its eye candy and a summer block buster, but i cant do it anymore, ive loved transformers all my 28 years of life, and i cant pretend like its ok to have next to zero charecter developmemt and plot holes big enough to drive optimus prime through. Bay is good at one thing, apealing to the lowest common denominator. When you look at movies like Avitar, the new star treck, the batman reboot etc, bayformers does not compare. Bay + transformers = fail. I hope there is a reboot in the not so distant future and that you continue this blog for the hard core fans like myself, thanks again, cheers!

  23. These must be diferent people then from your other posts because the majority of the people loved the movie, now after you get done slamming the movie there jumping on the ban wagon, cracks me up. I did not get everything I wanted in this movie but I thought it was awesome, spectacular effects and great battles and the plot was so easy uderstand its rediculus, but thats just my opinion,I to want to thank you having a very open and free tran's site tflamb, its been a blast, we all have alot of different opinions and thats a good thing, lets just hope that if they do another movie down the road we all get a little bit more of what we want in the movie because we will definately let them know how we feel about it, so once again thank you!

  24. Completely Agree with you. The last part was somewhat abhorrent; some Decepticons die but then the pace changes to a few humans moving here and there and so forth.

    Can't believe Shockwave, Megatron and Starscream just died like nothing. Soundwave's death was acceptable though. I felt Q (Wheeljack)'s character was a waste; Sideswipe, Ratchet and "Dino" could have gotten more.

    About the Emotional scene parts. One thing I don't understand is that why wasn't a scene where Optimus' mourns Ironhide's death, to show the Transformers' close affinity? And WTH, most of the Wreckers' action scenes are in Car mode?

    Plot holes are another thing. Instead of showing scenes where Mudflap, Skids and Jolt getting killed, they were just being "happily" cut from the 3rd film.

    Michael Bay should never have directed the Transformers franchise. Like you said, all he cared was the visual effects, and not the plot. Or the scriptwriters for the Transformers trilogy just pure sucks. Plus the Score sounded awesome, but felt rather repetitive.

  25. Where the hell did all these haters come from. All of a sudden out of no where i think i'm at rotten tomatoes.

  26. transformers is based on a childs toy, cartoon and comic book, there was never any seriousness taken on the subject. to say it deserves more is to also say that the upcoming battleship movie should be oscar material. BAY and the writers did the best they could with the material. to say that if someone made a movie focusing solely on the robots and making human characters secondary it would be better is a nerd rubbing his crotch with his classic gen 1 optimus prime. it would be a hit with its core audience, cost 300 million and bomb because no one but the core audience would go and see it, bringing in about 20 to 50 mil tops...i think all 3 films have been great fun and i hope this makes so much money they bring BAY back for part 4, because honestly i think he is the best at making these types of movies.....maybe they will get a diff director like the potter movies ,but evven if they do i predict you would want BAY back to do part 5.....and can all of you, from blogmaster down please get a damn dictionary and read what a "director" is....directors do no wholesale ignore what the "Screenwriter" writes, sure things are taken out, edited or whatever, but the majority of what is on the screen is what the writer, or writers write, the strength or weaknesses of that is the writers fault, not the directors. Finally call them silly, nuisances, or annoying but the fact that the parents are back and turturro, and the little robots is great.the parents continue to be hillarious, wheelie is great, and i love turturros it whatever, but comedy is needed in movies of this type...the humping dogs in the last movie was priceless, writers wrote that, and the devastator balls scene, both on ORCI....redneck robots, on BAY, but again i thought they were great too, not racist, its actually racist to say theyre racist....all in all it shouldnt be rebooted, there is no magic script to make a movie version of a toy for kids that spawned a tv show, cartoon movie, and 7+ different versions on TV, all different by the way, better. honestly for all you G1 fans, the cartoon movie was also visually stunning like the bay movies , but also jumped around from place to place seemingly for no reason, silly dialougue, no coherance, and that is what the fanboys cling to, soooo sad.... its just jealousy.....michael bay is an amazing director and i hope he continues with transformers....but i will still see every movie he directs, he is great...take care all.

  27. As a true to the core Transformers fan from day 1 (and I mean truly day 1 from the 80's cartoon, and yes I am that old), I was glad to see this franchise come to life on the big screen. I have enjoyed all 3 of these movies. I agree with most that ROTF was rushed and not well written. However, when I loved this show in the 80's, never did I think i would see my heroes brought to life on the big screen. So, I am pleased over all with the entire franchise. Yes, some points could have been better, but for the most part I, as well as you, went to the movies to get lost in a few moments that were not revolving around our bills, or job or other stresses in our lives. I for one enjoyed the movie(s). On a final note, I have watched this blog since it began. I would like to thank not only the founder of this blog, but all who have sent links, pictures, video and anything Transformers. I will continue to watch and read here.

    "Roll Out!"

  28. Hey man, great work on the site, great comments from the fans, I've checked the site everyday since you started it. I agree 100% with what you say and most of what the bloggers say. Love TF, I wanted these movies to win but they did fail. I always thought It would have been a good idea to have GIjoe & Cobra as the military and military bad guys in these movies. This way we could have cared a bit more about those human characters...

    Gabe. Canada, Ontario

  29. Rosie acting was lame to say the least. Her acting was awful and more Bay focused on her trying to sell what he thinks is the new hot girl men would die for... he ends up ruining every single scene, she ruins every single scene. She is not hot at all. Her trying to act is a disgrace, she turns every scene with her in into a farce.
    What a shame.

  30. I just have 1 question... Why are they making new characters instead of using the ones from G1. I dont get it!!!! Dino, Q, Brains and the Twins? The fans are going to see these movies because they want to see these things come to life, they want to see what transformer will be the next lucky one to make it to the big screen. MAN!!!! there are so many great transformers they could have used. I hope who ever reboots the Transformers, that they will stay with the original cast of characters.

    BUT... if someone can explain to me how and why these NEW characters made it into the movies that would be great. I just really think if they kept to the original G1 Transformers they could have been so much better.

  31. i dont understand. in the last people complained about how the story was complicated, now you're here still complaining. no one is perfect, and this is a great film for a Michael Bay movie. I actually enjoyed the story. You sir, ask for too much. If you know you're going to see a Transformers movie, you should expect these types of things for a movie. Rate the movie based on its type. Come out of the theater and saay okay this movie is great for a TRANSFORMERS FILM. Because it's true. The movie can't be something it's not. Michael Bay did an excellent job.. How about you try making a movie with so much pressure on making it an improvement on your back.

  32. enjoy accion, enjoy battles, enjoys fx...nothing more, bay good or bad director? I do not really matter, i see autobot and decepticons fight, quartering( the wreckers) .... and i enjoy,
    great blog!!!!

  33. 3rd movie was way better than the 2nd one. But I still believe that if the story was better many people, myself included, would feel alot happier.
    Did not like the fact that the 3 villains did not had more time in the film, and found shocking that Optimus Prime best friend Ironhide was shot dead and no one but the audience(I felt)gave a damm.

  34. I haven't seen the movie yet, but I will likely agree with everything you said, but there is one thing I do disagree with. If you believe TF3 lacks plot and character development, blame the WRITER (Ehren Kruger), not Michael Bay. Why does everyone blame the director? If you want to take the whole "he is the captian of the ship" viewpoint, I think that is a little unfair. MB did not write TF3, or ROTF. (blame Orci, Ehren, and Roberto) If I like a movie, I always look at who "wrote it". MB is the best at visuals and putting scenes together, but in truth, he is not responsible for the FX either. The fantastic folks at ILM are. The Director is responsible for putting "everything together" into a movie. If you have a bad plot and/or FX, you gotta work with it to deliver a movie. IMO the Director is responsible for answering just one question: Did you like the movie, yes or no? You can have cheesy FX and still like a movie, and you can have a cheesy lot and still like a movie. I think everyone can think of example of each.

    So, don't blame MB. I don't think any Director can do a better job of bringing TF3 to the big screen than MB. Plot, FX... who cares? Did you like the movie? And do you want MB to make more?

  35. "Where the hell did all these haters come from. All of a sudden out of no where i think i'm at rotten tomatoes."

    I think they are like vultures attracted to carcass from afar... In this case, they smell the 3/5 review from the blogger and they all come to tear a piece of the movie.

    The blogger merely said it was an OK film, nothing more, and suddenly all those people come saying the same thing... again... "MB ruined Transformers, make it more G1 like, Unicron, REBOOT!!!"

  36. Thanks a lot for the big job you've done with this blog !
    I hope we'll continue to read it every days !
    A fan from France!

  37. Like you, I really wanted to love this movie. I was rooting for it to be the best of this - or any other - summer. Your daily updates over the past year (from YouTube videos to Flickr pictures) made me proclaim this movie as the one 2011 movie I would see had I just one movie ticket the whole year. The trailers made it look like Bay had finally learned how to make a "dork-free Transformers" as he said. Unfortunately, as you've pointed out, he's got a lot to learn when he isn't marveling at his massive setpieces and signature stunts. Now that everything TF3 has been said and done, thank you for your dedication to keeping your blog's visitors up-to-date on the latest on anything and everything Transformers! Keep it up!

  38. Peter Jackson should receive the Franchise

  39. I think the line of "this movie could have been so much more with a different director" can be applied to most movies. I am happy with this movie and the franchise. Could I have been better? Of course. But if you live life with "what ifs", you never get to truly enjoy anything.

  40. I think 3 things would have given most Transformers fans exactly what they felt was missing with this movie.

    1) If not a quick scene mourning Ironhide, at least change that line Ratchet said to Bumblebee at the end to say "Ironhide would have been proud of how you fought in battle today"

    2) Shockwave - the scenes were fine, but give him a few lines every time we see him

    3) 5 more minutes at the end of the Transformers fighting , but include Megatron so it's all the Autobots against 2 enemies. At some point in the scene have Optimus and Megatron play chicken in vehicle mode and that could be how he ends up sitting around, dazed.

  41. @ Anon 7:37


    Be careful of spoilers guys, not everyone saw it first day.

    I am surprised you guys didn't like it. I thought it was great. My only complaint would be, as said above, about the lack of dot connected... dots with the Chicago scene where with just sort of happened. I to see watch how.

  42. ihatefanboys @6/30/2011 7:40 AM

    Are you serious? You sound like a Michael Bay fan boy rubbing your Michael Bay bobble head doll in your crotch. The dude lacks good directing skills like knowing how to film shots, how to pace camera angles, and how to edit, never mind how to create a good screenplay with development of characters and scenes. How disjointed have these 3 movies been, scene-to-scene? It's like one long A.D.D. trip where you aren't supposed to maintain continuity. The man is an awesome stunt coordinator and can blow things up better than most but he's a lousy director overall, for the reasons mentioned above.

    Don't confuse his movies making big bucks with quality of the cinematic experience - there will always be millions of "lowest common denominator" fans like yourself who will go see his moves once/twice/several times to pad his wallet and ego. SMH

  43. I enjoyed it for what it was. I know you can complain about random appearances of characters but the films much like the show are product placement for the most part.

    I would have enjoyed more Soundwave. His character was crucial to the plot, yet what he did was talked about (blackmailing the scientists) or Lazerbeak did the dirty work. Seeing how cool he looked at the end and how mean he was made me pine for more. Also would have liked some more dialogue from Shockwave instead of just "OPTIMUS!". Maybe just to hint at a past history of battling with Optimus.

    Overall I liked it a lot. I preferred Rosie to Megan. I thought Shia was more mature and I liked his edge and attitude. His character is always kind of getting screwed so I was happy so see him get pissed about it. Yes his parents didn't need to be in it, and yes Alan Tudyk didn't need to have the "accent". Little things like that are annoyances but they do not kill it for me. I also like that these movies are a bit long (since they feel epic) although I'd have prefered to see a longer "Dreads" scene instead of the aforementioned parents scenes.

    It's better than ROTF in most ways. The comedy is still forced (and a bit creepy/weird from Jeong) but I chuckled most times.

  44. Wreckers = FAIL

  45. Your review is 100% right on the money! I only hope we get a reboot, and this time it is done right. They need the story to focus more on the Robots and not as much as the humans. Would like to see them bring all the G1 Characters into the fold. (WTF is "Dino"). I really hope we see a reboot within the next 3-4yrs.

  46. I agree, some of the movie was silly expecialy the human side, and shockwave not doing much sucked a little bit but for all its so called faults the movie was a specticle it was a great experience the action was stunning, the special effects were out of this world and its been great to follow it all right here. Thanx tflamb

  47. First of all I’d like to give mad props for the guy who has been running the show at TFLAMB for the last several years. You have completely satisfied my hunger for robots in disguise!!! I have been a fan of your blog since ROTF and have literally viewed it every day since word of DOTM. Great job!!! If this franchise continues, PLEASE continue to post!!! Here are my comments about DOTM. My wife and I went to see it in 3d on opening day, arriving an hour earlier at the theatre to make sure we had the best seats (bless her heart, I owe her big). Last year our theatre literally had every room sold out for ROTF opening day and we were fortunate to have good seats because my wife went in and saved our seats, once again so grateful, braving angry attendants who wanted those seats. We were shocked that at the beginning of the trailers before DOTM, only 60% of the seats were full, and we began to question if this movie was gonna rock. As the credits rolled in the end, my wife asked me what I thought and I said sadly that it was o.k. Here are some of my weak points. DOTM was too long, especially for an old 36 year old Transformers junkie who has a 5 year old boy that drains me and having to get up for work at 6:00am. I literally had to force myself to stay awake during the final battle scene. The character identification was done very poorly, once again. Outside of the regulars from the last two, I was like “who was that?” I believe Shockwave could have played a bigger role for being the main villain. DOTM lacked a lot of emotion, especially during a scene where a particular Autobot was laid to waste. Finally, I truly agree that it was a huge slap in the face for diehard fans worldwide not to have the Ferrari and Benz be called Mirage and Wheeljack. Heck, I still will by the toys though. Strong points were some good humor (by the actors, not the robots), the visuals/sound effects, 3-d (if theatres only had listened to Bay about lighting, it would have been so much better) and the storyline were good. I hear people say that there were no dark areas, but take it from the perspective of being in Chicago and not in your movie seat. That mess would scare the crap out of me, a big city like Chicago standing in ruins and a mother of a planet hovering over ours. Chernobyl was pretty dark too. Anyways, thanks for letting me share.

  48. It was the best of the 3. It sounds to me like a lot of people where having an expectation of a perfect movie. Theres no possible way to please everyone. The story was good, the characters where good, and the visuals where amazing. I have never seen a cgi masterpiece like this movie ever. I am in aw how nit pickey you all are. As Arnold would say " stop your whining" ...

  49. I loved the movie, it gave me what i wanted: a woman's ass, fighting robots, vaporized humans, shock of the unexpected, and the satisfaction of hearing joint wrenching, gut crunching metal. Oh and the destruction of the moon.

  50. 1.5 day total $42.8 mill

  51. @7:37 AM - Couldn't agree more with you!

    Monday everyone couldn't wait and Michael Bay was your hero and blah blah. Now just because he listened to FANS, CRITICS, BLOGS, ETC. everyone is once again hating on him.

    I agree with a few things in the review except that in the beginning you are saying you enjoyed the movie for being visually entertaining then you rip it apart scene by scene discussing why you didn't like it because it was all visuals. Make up your mind...

    2nd, 5 years ago we would never see a car transform into a robot and now everyone is complaining that they don't show enough character?!?! I dunno about you but when the robots were getting executed i felt terrible for them. What Michael Bay did was take CGI to a whole new level and no one appreciates the accomplishments made by this billion dollar franchise.

    Expectations were definitely high for the last 2 films and I agree that the ball was dropped on the 2nd because of the writers strike. The film should have been delayed and pushed back but regardless i think Bay did a fantastic job story wise for the 3rd.

    Of course these are all my own opinions but to see this much hate for a great summer Blockbuster film ESPECIALLY when it takes a year to shoot and edit. Not like Avatar that took 10+years to write and combine 15 different stories we've already seen before. This is a popcorn flick.

    Long story short...
    I enjoyed the movie for what it was meant to be, a summer blockbuster full of all visuals, comedy, sex, violence, and a story as hole-filled as swiss cheese. I just find it funny how Cameron gets praised for his combining 10 different stories we've already seen and a 100% visual movie but Bay's original story and pushing 3D to a new level gets thrown in the trash.

  52. what? less than two days ago , everyone here was creaming their pants after watching everyone's changed their minds suddenly?

    while i agree with your review completely..i have one problem with it in that i kinda think you guys expected more ..this is Michael Bay for god's get what you pay for....even the prequel 15 page comic books say more about the story and seem more thought out than his 3 hour is what it is and hopefully someone...anyone will take over the franchise/reboot and change the whole aspect of these movies

  53. Great review, I agree with you on everything you said. I really did like TF3, but so much was missing. I can't say it was the best in the series, but it did improve from TF2 in some parts. If the time with the falling building scene had been taken out, so much more could have been explained. A lot of parts in the movie seemed rushed and should have been slowed down. And I wish that some of the Decepticons got more screentime than they were given.

    I thought TF3 was really good, despite it's flaws and missing pieces. I hope to see more TF movies made in the future. Gonna be seeing this one again soon!

  54. Great review. Spot on. Just got back from seeing the movie and it was underwhelming compared to what it could be in the hands of the right director. In addition to all the points you made I'll add this one - Bay has a penchant for cramming in too many fast shots into a movie rather than fewer slow developing ones. It's a fatal flaw and one that detracts from all his movies. e.g. you can fill in two hours with 60 two-minute shots or 30 four-minute shots that let you enjoy the scene/sequence/visuals/gravitas of the situation, but he tries to cram in too much.

  55. good review, i just feel that the movie was more about the humans conflicts than the autobots and decepticons conflict. also i noticed that shockwave was way under appreciated in this movie, he should have killed like a crap load of people and autobots

  56. they deffinatley need to re-do these movies, like there doing with spidermnan. although the first transformers was solid with only a little comic relief, then the second one was retarded with all the comedy, then they go out and say that the third one will be alot funnier. its like NO, i want a solid plot with awesome robot killing scenes

  57. This movie was good, didnt like how alot of the new bots didnt get more time to talk....and as for the other bots who were here since the first less time than some others...Dislike how they killed a few guys off....which isnt right..but I guess it is really Bays last one with this.../:

    overall it was great....just the few things still bother me...

  58. to the people who complained about shockwave not having enough time..he wasnt the main villian..sentinel was..he was exactly who he is..he was like the militia of the decepticons..i agree that they should have connected the dots for a lot of the plot holes missing in the movie..but its transformers..people expect an inception or dark knight plot out of a movie that is about robots..give MB credit for at least giving us a glimpse of what it looks like to have the fans dream of transformers in live action on the big screen..i do agree with some of the review though..but at least it was better (storywise) then ROTF

  59. I have been a TF fan since the 80's. I was so excited about these movies. I realize it all can't be exactly like we envision it, but I think this franchise would have been better served with a different director as well. I have to say that after all the hype, after being in Chicago as the were filming, and after being excited I was disappointed. Ironhide's death really jarred me, especially that he just seemed to become an afterthought. Why the heck could we not have G1 names for the new characters, and why did the decepticons take on a new whimpy role? And again, here we are with a bunch of decepticon drones and no new characters. I'm frustrated.

  60. what else can I add? only WHY CHICAGO again?

    but all you and my fellow commenters have written was spot-on. you go into a Michael Bay film as you would for any name director: with the expectation that the visuals are going to be bombastic; that he'll "shoot women as slick as cars, and cars as slick as women."

    what if he could just get a solid script and/or learn storytelling, and just shoot the script as-is? maybe his next, smaller film.

    and let me add kudos to the others. phenomenal site. been on it almost every day since 2007. keep on keepin' on! vigilance!

  61. One thing i must say about this movie , weather or not you like bay or hate his fucking guts, this movie had some of the most mind boggeling special effects i'v ever seen, just simply incredible, the 3d i seen was so fucking good i cant wait to see it again but thats not to say the movie didn't have some problems but it was very enjoyable to me so i feel i got my money's worth.

  62. I have not seen the movie yet...driving 5 hrs to see it at the best theater lol. I have read a crap-load of "reviews," but tflambs is one of the better reviews I have read. Very measured and no bs. Gotta respect that. I am a guy from G1 era...I know I will like the movie for what it is, so its all good :D !!

    tflamb if they ever reboot this thing, I hope you will be here with an equally cool blog !!
    I don't know you...but its been a real pleasure these past years coming to this site!

    take care all!!

    see you at the reboot forums lol !!

  63. I still think it is incoherent from the rest of the films. How? The allspark, matrix, and the space bridge technology. In the first one the cube was vital, but wasnt as vital in the 2nd movie, now in the 3rd has not place at all.

  64. Neccesarily it does not have to be reeboted. Unicron could stil lbe lurking far beyond.....and with cybertron gone, hes gonna want to destroy the matrix of leadership...and he'll need troops to help him.(A.K.A. He will revive megatron and the cons he needs to defeat Optimus and his bots) and then.......the ultimate battle for earth will New York XD

  65. I agree with your review 100%. Overall, I have enjoyed all 3 movies. If you focus on the films strengths, the weaknesses are mostly forgivable. I am thankful for the work Bay has done, but I do not want to see him director another. In the right hands, I believe Transformers can one day become one of the all time great film franchises. I hope a few years from now, a new Transformers comes out that makes the Bay films look as dated as Joel Schumacher's take on Batman. I don't mean that as an insult to Bay, its just a fact that his talents have limit. This franchise has gone as far as it can go with him, and I am excited to see whats next. Thanks again for all your blog posts, I have been checking this site a few times a week for the last few years and have really enjoyed it.

  66. I think the only new cons were the Dreads and Shockwave, and Soundwave just has a new form.....OMG I ALREADY HAVE THOSE FIGURES :O well accept Soundwave

  67. It is truly amazing how those so called critics really do affect people , boy oh boy when those first positive reviews came out people were hanging from the rafters with excitement and joy and nothing but positive statements after seeing the movie, its really sad to see that people actually listen to these so called critics, i fucking hate those mother fuckers with a passion, every movie i hate they love, every movie i love they hate, i think they actually hate us as well, it couldn't be more clear man, the disconect between the fans which is us, and the so called critics is the size of texas, at a minimum that bad ass movie deserves 6 out of 10 just by the action and special effects alone, and tflamb your review was very fair and i respect you for that, your not an asshole that personally attacks people, but these so called critics can go to fucking hell,they make me sick to my stommach, their reviews are every where man, front pages of news papers and on and on, now there personally attacking rosie, weather shes a good actor or not, that shit just aint right... thanks for letting me vent tflamb

  68. I'll hope Bay does better in 4th movie :D (although I know there's not going to be fourth movie, which is a shame.)?

  69. ok for god's sake ...stop with the don't listen to critics because they are haters...critics write about a movie ..not about whether Optimus prime was heroic or not or Ironhide was too short or dino shoudl have been mirage or whatever .

    This was a bad bad movie , if you enjoyed it for whatever reason it does not make you less of a human being . I enjoy burgers and fries as well doesn't mean they are good for me

    At the end of the day from a movie perspective it was a piece of shit..simple...the acting was bad, the editing awful and it seemed like a drunk dude put the storyboards together . Scenes jumped from one end to the other, no attention to detail, (unless it involved breaking something ) no character development ,no emotion , weak storyline /implementation of a story and that's what a critic is trying to critique..not how many explosions and how many cars got damaged. I'm sure that's one of the aspects about a movie but not everything .....somebody needs to tell Bay that ...he's tried 3 times and failed miserably at understanding

  70. I'm a big believer that the human characters received way too much screentime. In every film the story was carried, usually poorly, by Sam and his friends. There was zero dialogue among the Autobots and only a minimal amount of the Decepticons talking.

    That said Moon is a great film. Its not the best writing or directing but thats not what Bay was ever about. Its your typical summer blockbuster.

  71. @Anon 8:00pm wtf? "no emotion"? you must be a little off from the movie. I know it was mind-blowing and it was an incredible movie, just relax and take a nap. im tired too. go see it again in a day or two after you've rested, and then rest again.
    -Thanks, Prime!

  72. TF4
    Humans launch Megatron's dead body into space along with other Decepticon's because they never learn of course and Unicron comes across the bodies creating Galvatron out of Megatron and we have a base for TF4

  73. I thought Dark of the Moon was an entertaining film, and could see that Bay was trying his best to correct for the shortfalls of ROTF (getting rid of the Twins... Making the action sequences more clear cut... Not adding any genitals on the Transformers and leaving the phallus jokes to Ken Jeong and Sam's mom).

    I'm disappointed by the portrayal of Shockwave. Not gonna elaborate here, but he was underused like The Fallen was in TF2. Too bad. And why oh why did Bay remove the visor from Soundwave and give him a mouth?? And did Frank Welker even do his voice this time around? Oh well. I liked the skirmish with Bumblebee though.

    Rosie did fine as Carly. As a huge space nerd, I enjoyed the opening Apollo 11 scene. BTW, did anyone else think of Smallville and The Event's series finales during TF3's climax? Just wondering :)

  74. To a lot:
    some people blame Michael Bay, others the writer. Yet there is one man to blame for the fact Transformers as a character get little development, one man responsible for having the visuals of a collapsing tower (as the review mentions it doesn't add), that man is :


    Not that the movies are bad but Spielberg had to much influence. He was responsble for the fact that in movie one Sam killed Megatron and not Optimus Prime (Michael Bay wanted that).
    Spielberg is responsible for the fact humans get more airtime then Transformers etc etc.

  75. If he faild so miserabely, why do millions of people around the world flock to his movies no matter what, dispite all the negative reviews on all his movies, can you answer that? fuck no you cant but i would imagine he has a hell of a fan base and people like his movies, fuck the critics, such assholes, always looking for getcha or a gotcha and then exploit the shit out of it, yeah we love broke butt mountain and harry potter where just so above you pee ons,oh and ofcourse twilight oh yes, those dumb fucking movies couldnt hold a candle to what i just saw

  76. Judging by Anon 11:41's english he wouldn't understand a critique even if it hit him in the face

  77. We keep going back to see these movies because we are hoping for something better. I had plans to see it opening day and I decided not to inexplicably. It later hit me that I wasn't in the mood to go because I didn't want to be disappointed. Well I have to say I am disappointed. I finally went tonight and it was just horrible. It just could be so much more. The robots barely spoke. Too much human fighting. There were so many scenes where I just wondered, "where are the robots?" Why aren't the autobots fighting the decepticons? Where are they while the humans are fighting? This is our fault. The movie goers keep going to these films and the movie makers get lazy because they know we will show up. I'm just really disappointed. In my opinion it was just like ROTF. I think we all agree that this movie, like all of them, could have been so much more than they were. I've enjoyed the blog most of all. Time to say good bye.

  78. I loved the movie Sentinel Prime was a great villian..Ironhide(my fave autobot)death made me a little sad I felt was a great movie..I liked how they explained a lot of the decepticons having the same alt modes this time (them coming out the space bridge and scanning the first vehicles they see) I loved the wreckers..I loved sideswipe and Dino too..didn't like the head design for Que but I liked how he was the scientist and made the inventions..I thought the way Optimus trailer was used was brilliant also.. My only problems was the Optimus vs Megatron battle wasn't long enough, Shockwave should have destroyed more, there should be a quick scene of the autbots mourning ironhide(believe it is but it may have been cut), and they should have explained how could another planet be brought into our solar system without messing up our gravity and all that other crap (they could have just said Cybertron isn't like other natural planets its more machinery so it won't have an effect on our solar system) just a simple nitpick, the igor bot could have been removed from the film(simple nitpick cuz it only had two 1 second cameos), and I think thats it for my problems..I absolutely loved Rosie I think she did a great job for her first movie, loved Dempsey's character, loved the dreads design, loved the troops birdsuits and their parachuting scenes, loved the driller and building scene (think that scene alone maybe the most exciting action scene I have seen in a long time the way the building was falling and the troops and sam had to go through it was epic)..well imo TF3 was the best from the series a 7.5 to 8 out of 10 a great film not perfect but it was very good..I know there will be a new movie soon too much money to be made to stop after just 3 movies I don't think another director can do the action scenes like Bay so I don't know if I want someone new but I wouldn't mind seeing someone else giving it a shot..going again today to watch it again taking my Mom the old girl loves Transformers she just loves Optimus Prime I know she will enjoy it..

  79. The robots had more screentime than the first two movies combined don't know why people are acting like they didn't have enough time they can't make a full film with robot scenes its too expensive I'm shocked at how many robot scenes we got in this one and I loved it so I don't know what this comment at 12:33am is talking about...anybody that calls this film horrible with a straight face needs to be slapped with baby powder...horrible? man please go somewhere with that BS!!

  80. Easily the best movie in the world.

  81. Haters gonna hate, Michael Bay FTW, if you aren't down with that suck it. All you G1 fan boys need to realize that G1 still exists so if you want it, go pull out some tapes or dvd's and watch it, if you want to watch a new movie that is actually exciting watch the Bay movies. You fanboy's need to realize that you guys are the minority here, and the average viewer doesn't give a rats ass about the fact that Soundwave was a car, or that Wheeljack's name was changed to "Que" they just want to see Optimus Prime and Bumblebee tear shit up, explosions, and robots fighting.

  82. remember12:33am,your speaking for yourself, dont be lumping everyone together, i hate that shit, the vast majority of people who seen the movie, liked it hands down, do your research before you speak for everyone, your in the minority big time, your more in tune with those wonderful critics who thought thor was so great, did you see that dumb stupid robot in thor, oh my god!

  83. ...just seen the movie. Liked it a lot...but wanted to love it :( ! Could have been soooo much more :/

    ...there won't be a TF 4 ...I can tell you that.

    now we wait for a reboot :)

    All in all the whole Tf live action movies were great to see our childhood heroes and villains on the big screen in a very big way!

    Thanks MB for taking it on...some big shoes for him to fill....but now I think it would be great for a reboot from a true childhood TF fan :) who can capture the spirit of transformers and the rich 25 + years of history and back ground.

    ...time will tell :)


  84. I loved DOTM. It's probably the best 1 out of the trilogy!

    But i do have to agree, since it's a Bay movie, tons of action scenes, not much in the storytelling. There were holes all over the place that made me scratch my head.

    Every keeps expecting the world and always leaves disappointed in some way. But I went in with a clear head and knew it was time for more Bayhem.

  85. A great review.....right on the mark on all points. The movie was fair (5 or 6) at best.

    I too expected a much better film after the disaster ROTF turned out to be, so maybe that's the problem.

    The first was the best by far (a 9 or 10) and so much of what made it the best was missing from the last two movies. The human/autobot interaction was lacking as was the autobot/autobot interaction as well. That made the first one so much more than just an action movie and different from that genre. Too bad MB decided just to go for "action only" to ensure the big audience of teens this summer. For all the time he used up with that stuff, he could have set aside 10-15 minutes for those scenes in this movie. Think of all those great scenes from the 1st movie.

    And killing off Ironhide was terrible, not only how casually it was done (none of the characters brought it up even at the end like with Jazz in #1), but why "vaporize" him as well unlike the others? Guess there is no chance to bring him back again. Just seemed wierd it was so casual when it could have been a more serious moment.

    Now, I'm getting "into the weeds" and there are so many more things to pick at, but why bother.

    Oh well, it's just a movie, but it's sad to see it fall short of it's potential when it could have been so much better. And I'm sure the 4th willbe back in two or three years with a new director and cast, so we'll have to see what happens. (How about Megan Fox leading the Decepticons against Optimus and crew?)


    PS - Great Blog you have here. Enjoy it a lot and hope to do so in the future. Good Work.

  86. Just saw the movie and I gotta say it was AWESOME!! Also just wanna say to the person who does this Blog...thanks a lot for your hardwork and keeping all us fans well informed on all the Transformers news...hope you'll continue to do that for the next Transformers movie it there will be one! Take care Transformers fans and here's to hoping there'll be a TF4!!

  87. Everyone who is influenced by what the critics said about ROTF think it was bad, but in hindsight I consider it the strongest of the 3 Transformers movies that Michael Bay has put out. This one (DOTM) was crazily disjointed and full of flaws and plot holes so big that the Dweller/Driller could tunnel through...quite unbelievable actually. And the first one, we'll just let that pass.

  88. The movie, I have to say, was the best of the three. I mean youd have to have some special talent to make this worse than ROTF.I believe that the writer and Bay both had faults in the lapses of the movie. Krueger should have thought of what effect these lapses would have to the audience. As for Bay, if directors are supposed to put things together to make them flow smoothly, he should have said something. A movie is made to make you see, sure there are times where the writer wants people to think, but those are like the ending in Inception kind of scenes. It took me a day to figure out how Optimus got to his trailer. Krueger should have at least added fight scene there, I mean that's not a huge lapse, but it would be nice to see. Speaking of which...that was terrible, a certain bot never gets mentioned in the film at all after THE scene. I mean this bot was great and "an old friend." he needed more respect than being just a casualty in the war. Either Krueger should have put that in the script, or that Bay should have added that. The main antagonists barely get any scenes at all. Big bad-a** Megatron gets barely any fight scenes, and Shockwave as well. I know Bay said he never gets any lines, that's acceptable, but they could have let him do some destruction if he was as bad as Bay said. So, unless there are some sort of deleted scenes, where they fill in those lapses, I will be left feeling empty.

    They never established a "character" to some of the new Autobots. Or they never let the newer Autobots develop a character because of the little screen time they get. The movie was long. There were scenes that could have been compressed without having any huge lapse in the movie. I loved the Dreads scene with Ironhide and Sideswipe. The scene with Lazerbeak in the house was plain creepy and gave me some chills. I liked Soundwave's character here, merciless and plain evil, especially the execution scene. Sentinel Prime was great, Leonard Nimoy was a great choice. The story was good, not amazing and going as deep as they said they would, but it was alright. I was waiting for that moment of, *silence*, but that never really came to me. The only super amazing thing were the visual effects. The destruction of Chicago and the building falling was jaw dropping. The Transformer fight scenes were amazing.

    All in all, the movie was great if you would overlook the depth of the story for the visuals. But the story was good, it was missing some depth and had a few lapses that left me saying, "huh, they could have done this or that." But as I said before, this was the greatest of the three. This is a much watch, really.

  89. If they do make another movie I hope it is a prequel on Cybertron so they can explain Optimus's history with shockwave and the comment by Optimus about the last battle and how it might have been different with Sentinel Prime if he had still been there. I think this movie kind of leads into a prequel anyway, since a lot of the main villains die.

  90. Dang it! I could have made the story more interesting and I'm not a director! What the hell is Michael Bay thinking??? He got too tired on the visuals that he forgot to make a good storyline. The film was good but to feel it it's not. It's doesn't have a heart. I guess just pure visual stuffs learn it from james cameron!

  91. I was really hoping that this movie would set itself apart from ROTF and surpass the original Transformers movie. Certainly from the hype and talk before the movie it seemed that would be the case, but after seeing it I'm a bit disappointed. I've only seen it once and plan to see it a couple more times, so maybe my disappointment will wane.

    The moive was visually stunning, but the lack of character development and the way the plot seems to play out disjointedly on screen distracts from it.

    A summer blockbuster does not have to be for the simple minded. There is no reason why a Transformers movie can't have an engaging, suspenseful, and emotional story, together with spectacular visual effects, explosions, and action. A Transformers movie with all of these elements would smash all box office records.

    It can be done and will hopefully be done in the future with a "reboot" which is being discussed all over the net.

    For this Transformers fan, I hope any reboot that's planned will not throw out the events of the past three movies and start from scratch.

    Instead, I think any reboot needs to:

    1) Contribute to the creation of a Transformers saga(ala Star Wars, Harry Potter). There is no reason why there can't be another new trilogy (could be a prequel trilogy or a sequel trilogy) introducing new characters, new environments, and new stories. Lets see some prequels telling the story of Cybertron and its fall. Let see some sequels with Galvatron, Ultra Magnus, and Rodimus. The bottom line for me is that there has been too much time and talent invested in the three Transfmormes movies so far to just ignore them with a complete reboot. Instead, these movies need to be wrapped into a greater Transormers movie continity that tells a complete story.

    2) Keep same visual look.

    It's going to be important for the fans to be vocal about what they want to see in any new Transformers movies as Hasbro is undoubtedly beginning the brainstorming and planning right now for the direction that any new movies will take. I would like to see a unified Transforms saga!

  92. Well written review. I followed you on twitter until the the 21st of June because I was afraid of spoilers but after watching the movie and reading your review, I realize that you are actually very good at what you do, you understand your audience and you are unbiased.

    I wish you would get more credit for your site.

  93. LOVED THIS MOVIE TO DEATH. Bay, ILM and Co. did their thing. Who gives a crap about Unicron, it was an epic battle between earth and the decepticons this movie had many elements that would be reminiscenct to a Unicron story. Overall I enjoyed it, and it was the best of the Trilogy.

  94. the review is right on the money

  95. Did i see the wrong movies? I'm a fan since Wheeljack and Bumbleebee stole energon on Cybertron, and i don't see what is wrong whit the TF movies. Yeah sure ROTF could have been better, but this one is great. I love what Bay did with my childhood heros and i thank him for that. One thing though, for killing my favorites (Jazz and Ironhide) i will come to your house Michael and kick you in the nuts. But for the 3 movies i thank you and i hope (feeling like i'm the only one) you will do a fourth.

  96. I never expected any of the Transformers movies to be anything but a series of excuses for my favorite giant robots to fight in live action.
    I don't expect incredible plots, social relevance, or anything that "critics" look for in a movie.
    That said....I'm kinda disturbed by the direction taken by Dark Of The Moon.
    Who wants to go to see movie involving many of their favorite characters, only to see them all systematically annihilated?
    Why would I want a Transformers 4?? Almost everyone that I enjoyed seeing has been killed.
    We left the movie feeling like we wished we hadn't seen it. It was depressing and grim, rather than entertaining.

  97. I just saw it and I must say I actually liked it quite a bit! It was far and away the best film of the trilogy. There were a couple jokes in the first 1/3 that didn't work but not so bad that it ruined my opinion of the film. Overall I thought the comedy was fairly well handled and for the most part much more subdued. The story this time was also much stronger and much better planned out. There were several plot points ripped straight from the original series and were fun to look out for.

    The acting was decent to good on most accounts with an especially impressive performance from Rosie Huntington-Whitely. For her first real acting gig I thought she did a very commendable job in the film, plus looking really hot didn't hurt her any. She won't get any Oscars for it but I thought she did very well, considering. I must say Megan Fox was not missed in the slightest especially after her worthless appearance in the previous film. Even Sam's parents, while needless storywise, were actually funny again and not as lame and grating as they were in Revenge. Patrick Dempsey also did a good job playing the rich playboy who turns out to be a weaselly, spineless backstabber manipulating Sam from behind the scenes.

    As for the Transformers themselves overall the new bots really didn't get a whole lot to do. While underused, I thought Dino and Shockwave really kicked ass for the screentime they had. Still my favorite new characters were easily The Dreads and The Wreckers. The Dreads had no real lines but they looked really badass, with their battle on the highway being one of my favorite scenes in the movie. The Wreckers were probably my favorite overall new characters. Loved that they had Irish rather than the southern accents I expected. They also had several really cool moments in the final battle. While not used much in the previous movie Sideswipe really had several moments to shine this time around and was wonderfully voiced by Dexter's James Remar. The only problem I had voice acting wise was that Dino's Italian accent was a tad over the top but thankfully he only had a couple lines and he did look cool.

    Overall this was the first one of the three that I could say I really liked without any real qualms. Its also the only one I'll actually buy on Bluray when it comes out. Hell I might even decide to see it again next weekend if only to experience it in 3D. Its in no way what I would call a great film but I actually enjoyed this one. No better or worse than most the other movies I've seen all year.

  98. I just got back watching Transformers 3 and really it wasn't that bad.I like it despite some flaws.I enjoyed it very much anyway to hell with so called movie critics and the haters.I'm glad my favorite autobots Bumblebee and Optimus Prime.

  99. Some of you guys fail as transformer fans. Bay did not create the wreckers... A director does not write, so stop blaming Bay in that area. If you have a prob... Ehren Kruger is your guy. I LOVED the hell out of this film and I'm going to see it multiple times in IMAX 3D. Haters, back in your hole please! Bay finally gave the true fans a chance to see the war end. I have been a fan since G1. Didn't care for Revenge that much, although it did have great action. EVERYTHING about DOTM was better than the other 2 films. Even the romance, for all you Carly haters. She did in fact do a better job than Megan. Get your heads out of your asses, and snap back to reality. DOTM= Action Movie of the Year.

  100. well..i still thinks that people behind TF needs to be ultra fanatic fans of TF..although i'm impress with the movie but hey i dont feel any TF film!! it just a film where people lives among the in disguise robots but not even close to any TF show. Human role in the film should be as tiny as atom and just focus on the robots, cybertron, sci-fi but not earth. Who cares what happen to earth in TF xcept for Optimus(hahaha).They just need to feed the true fans 1st before others. The most sad part of all the 3 movies is 'where is our fucking amazing masterpiece TF theme song ???'...Bay is a great director but devastating each and every TF fans. I'll rank the animated Transformers: The Movie (1986) to be 1st. TRANSFORMERS REALLY NEED TOTAL REBOOT! I'm sorry.

  101. I echo every word in in your review. I always feel there will be a punch line or dream sequence in some of Bay's scenes because sometimes they're so off point or make no sense that I'm thinking in the moment it can't be anything else!

    I want to take a moment to say thank you for this blog... I've been following you since before the first movie and I'm saddened at the thought the run may be over. I will follow your other blogs now just to get my daily fix of comfort because this blog was literally part of my daily routine. Thanks again for all you do and if possible, please leave some type of email contact info in the event I magically come across some TF news and need to pass it on to you! Thanks again!

  102. Counterpunch7/05/2011 11:51 AM

    I agree with you TFLAMB. I went from surprised to excited to disappointment.

    a) As always the US Army has the firepower to destroy any Transformers

    b) Where was Silverbolt?

    c) Enough of ugly human looking robots (Q and the Twins and Brains).

    d) The US Army saving the Autobots. again.

    e) Why have fat Autobots like the red Wrecker?

    f) As always almost all Decepticons are identical

    g) TIP: To kill a Transformer just rip their head off. No, really.

    h) Are the Autobots going extinct? Multiple Autobots on the Ark, why not revive them all to fight the Decepticons?

    i) Never explained on the hidden Decepticon army and ships on the Moon.

    j) Showed Decepticons all around the world, 200 of them. What happened to them all in the end?

    k) Ironhide. Best Autobot bar Optimus yet Jazz gets a better mourning than him.

    l) Please nominate Bumbleebee as the next Prime. Bumblebee Prime. Keeps killing all the important hard to kill Decepticons.

    m) Please have a name for each and every Decepticon that comes on screen.

  103. Oly Mctavish7/06/2011 4:52 AM

    Mr. TFLAMB

    I like your blog, but please, take the metal rod out of your ass.

    You seem to crave exposition, character development, blah blah blah!!

    If you cant appreciate what they put on the screen, Go watch something else! Don't force Transformers to be Eastenders!

    Just coz you want it a certain way, it doesnt live up to what YOU want (like that's even important) you hate.

    Critics have no place in a modern world. Just promote the film.

  104. This is a great follow-up that is just as wonderful as its original and a follow-up that is superior to the previous one. This is another great film for Michael Bay.


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