Run Time: 2 hrs 30 mins
Plot Synopsis: The battle for Earth has ended but the battle for the universe has just begun. After returning to Cybertron, Starscream assumes command of the Decepticons, and has decided to return to Earth with force. The Autobots believing that peace was possible finds out that Megatron’s dead body has been stolen from the US Military by Skorpinox and revives him using his own spark. Now Megatron is back seeking revenge and with Starscream and more Decepticon reinforcements on the way, the Autobots with reinforcements of their own, may have more to deal with then meets the eye.
It feels like so long ago… When I first heard that my beloved Transformers were headed to the big screen, I was thrilled. When I first heard that Michael Bay was the man tapped to direct the film, I was honestly excited. Look, I’m never going to try and say that Michael Bay is one of the great directors in Hollywood. I don’t think there’s a single person who would honestly try to argue that point. But as a guy who spent his childhood smashing transformer toys into each other, simulating massive battles between Optimus and Starscream (my personal fav), I couldn’t be more thrilled. Michael Bay kicks ass at making kick ass action films. Bay can blow shit up like no one else in Hollywood can. I”ve never wanted to see a deep, serious, dramatic Transformers flick. I just wanted to see big ass robots fight. In that regard, Michael Bay did not disappoint with the first Transformers. For as much flak as I’ve taken for this opinion, I’m still proud to say I really enjoyed the first transformers film. It had big robots throwing punches and blowing things up. That’s all I’ve ever wanted for the Transformers, and unless Michael Bay decides to stop making Transformers films now, that’s all we’re going to get. I may be the only one, but I’m happy about that.
Before going to see Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, you need to get yourself in the right mindset. Leave your expectations at the door before you enter the theater, and make sure you have a big bucket of popcorn, cause that’s the way you are going to enjoy this film. Revenge of the Fallen is 2+ hours of giant robots smashing buildings, beating the robotic crap out of each other, and generally blowing up anything in their way. While not without it’s flaws, if you go in to the theater expecting to see some cool action sequences as only Michael Bay can make them, you’ll love this movie.
*** This review is 100% spoiler free **
Revenge of the Fallen succeeds in bringing high intensity, high octane action to the screen. This movie is bigger, badder, and way cooler than the first. So if you liked the original, you are going to freaking love this one. The explosions are larger, the robots are cooler (and easier to see clearly), and the fights were epic. Basically, everything you would expect from Michael Bay. Don’t come to the theater expecting to see character development or high drama, because you will be immensely disappointed. This is pure action, and nothing else seems to matter. Don’t expect locales to make sense either – you could go from the pyramids in one scene to the red sea faster than any human could travel. But none of that matters. Not to Michael Bay. Screw geography! The more robots, the better! Right???
This brings me to a serious point of contention with this film. Perhaps the most annoying aspect of this film was the inclusion of the super lame, uber-campy twins – Mudflap and Skids. They were the comic relief of the film. Where I felt the first film succeeded was providing some subtle humor without anything feeling forced. Where this film failed was forcing humor upon the audience with those two campy twins. I HATED the characters. I’m not sure if anyone will agree with me on this or not, we’ll have to see what everyone thinks after the film opens late tomorrow night, but I just couldn’t stand seeing them try to be funny. The robots can provide a little humor every once in a while, and I thought Bumblebee did a fine job with that, but these two were like caricatures – glorified robot clowns.
All that said, the rest of the robotic additions to the cast were at the very least interesting. I found Jetfire to be a great addition to the cast of characters. An older transformer that is essentially the robotic equivalent of a crotchety old man. It was humorous and refreshing. His transformations were slower and he creaked with each movement, each subtle detail was paid attention to and the result was a very “unique” transformer that should not be forgotten. Fans of the franchise are likely to be happy about the inclusion of the autobot Sideswipe and the decepticon Soundwave, two fan favorite robots. The inclusion of the Devastator, a massive bot formed by several other bots called constructicons (for those who didn’t know), was cool in concept but flawed in it’s implementation. The robot itself looked wicked cool and I was initially very impressed. But without giving too much away, I will say that Devastator ended up being a massive disappointment. He could’ve been so much more. The film also featured several other smaller bots, including insecticons and some bots created from kitchen appliances exposed to a shard of the all spark from the first film. While most of these small bots had next to no importance in the film, they were just a cool little touch. As a whole, the robots in Revenge of the Fallen were the true stars of the film, as they stole the spotlight away from the “actors” in this film and drew your attention to them every scene they were in.
Revenge of the Fallen was a technical masterpiece. Big budget effects blended seamlessly with the live action shots to form a beautiful mashup that made me leave with a big smile on my face. It’s hard not to stare in awe of the flash in front of you; be it giant fighting robots engaged in epic battle or kick ass “chase” sequences, the whole film just plain looked GOOD. The bots themselves were done much better than the last time, in my opinion, and I found it easier to follow them and determine who was who and what was what during the fight sequences. That was a pretty big disappointment of mine from the first film. Glad to see that the film makers noticed that flaw in the last film and corrected it this time around. This film was exactly what anyone should expect from Michael Bay: a few slow-motion dramatic moments and a ton of widescreen, airborne insanity. Prepare for a spectacle.
There will surely be plenty of people that come out and bash this movie. Like I said, it suffers from forced campy style humor and a lack of character development. This won’t be up for Best Picture at the Oscars, but I don’t care about any of that. This movie is a ton of action and excitement, featuring beautiful F/X and wicked cool robots. You won’t find much drama here; while there is a feasible plot that will keep you mildly interested, the draw of this movie is the robot on robot action. Car chases, big explosions, metal on metal, and Bumblebee’s “fluids”, just about everything you saw in the first film on a bigger and badder scale. If you are into that, if you love explosions, if you just want to leave your brain at home and check out a pure adrenaline filled spectacle, you’ll enjoy Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. I know I did.