The long awaited moment has finally come to pass – Michael ‘AWESOME’ Bay has brought back his brigade of badass robots and there are more than ever and they’re in a mood to kick some ass. It has been a long, arduous two years since alien robots first came to Dirt Earth and blew up huge chunks of it but the wait has been worth it. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is bigger, badder, louder, and better than the first one.
What do you ask out of a summer movie? Do you ask for babes? We got ’em. Do you ask for big robots? We got ’em. Do you ask for explosions? Oh baby do we got ’em. If it weren’t for Star Trek earlier this year I’d say that Transformers 2 was easily the most fun you could have at a movie this summer. It still might be, but the race is very close. Is it the same caliber of movie? Not really. But is it huge, exciting and fun? Hell yeah. Here are 10 Things that got me Optimus Primed and 5 Things That should have Fallen.
10 Things I Liked
10. Booming Soundtrack. Not only is this movie just plain loud, but it’s blasting out some pretty awesome tunes as well. The score is pretty tight and the soundtrack definitely has some good music on it. I’m planning on buying both.
9. Lights. Camera. Action. Explosions. If you, like me, have a fireball fetish then prepare to get yours. This movie is almost non-stop action and anytime robots do battle, something is bound to explode.
8. Babes. The first film got a lot of attention for having Megan Fox dripping sex everywhere and TF2 is only slightly different – in addition to Fox there is Isabel Lucas, a sexy Australian siren who might even surpass Fox in the looks department.
7. America Kicks Ass. While The Nest, a secret cabal of world armies working with the autobots, is multinational, it really is America that does the ass kicking here – and we kick some serious ass. Michael Bay has a fantastic relationship with the military, and it is on display. At least three kinds of jet fighters cruise by in addition to helicopters and AWACS in the air, while on the ground entire platoons of men pour out of APCs and hoverboats. There is an impressive amount of hardware on display, and it all looks so good. Railguns! Ten million rounds of ammunition fired! Hell yeah!
6. Julie White as Judy Witwicky. Sweet Lord was this woman on fire in this movie. In the first installment, I found the parents to be an alright addition – nothing mind blowing. In Fallen they both get more to do and deliver more laughs than you’d ever expect, but the real star is Julie White as Judy. This woman had me laughing at virtually everything she said. It’s my cheat day I can eat whatever I want! And what she wanted was ‘green’ brownies.
5. Variety of Robots. There are a ton of new Transformers in this installment and Bay wisely decides to not bother introducing us to most of them – that would have made the movie about 9 hours long and full of origins. Rather, we just know that new robots have joined the war on both sides. Sideswipe is an awesome new Autobot while the Decepticons have recruited a wide variety of cannon fodder. This isn’t perfect though, as you’ll see me talk about later.
4. Mudflap and Skids. Apparently some people hate these two comedic brothers and some people, in their unnatural desire to attack Bay at every turn, have even called them racist stereotypes. To me, and to many of those who saw it with me, they were a hilarious addition. Two feuding, mentally absent brothers with potty mouths and a proclivity towards violence. Reminds me of home. I loved these two and they get some of the best lines – from calling Sam’s new friend a pussy to observing You shot me in the face!
3. Robot Ninjitsu. The fights this time around are longer, bigger, better and way more vicious. In one scene Optimus takes on like four Decepticons by himself, swinging around dual swords at one point and busting out some hooks. Prime is a cold killing machine when he needs to be, tearing through his opponents. There are a ton of robot hand to robot hand fights, which are sleek and tight.
2. A True Robot War. Where Terminator Salvation failed in showing us a real war of humans versus machines, Fallen excels in showing us Autobots and the humans fighting off the increased numbers of Decepticons. The battle scene at the end is total shock and awe with hundreds of thousands of rounds being fired, dozens of explosions and a ton of robot violence. Hell yeah x2!
1. Michael Bay. He made this movie possible. No one else would/could direct a movie like this. This is a Michael Bay movie. That is the problem others have – avowed Michael Bay haters will never give him a pass. But for this movie, Bay was the only answer. Huge, epic action scenes, tons of military cooperation, well-used slow motion and a camera lens that just won’t leave Megan Fox’s body alone. You want slo-mo boob bounces? You got them. T&A looking good. Woo. I think Bay is the perfect director for this franchise.
5 Things I Didn’t Like
5. Not Enough Josh Duhamel. Because there are so many robots and so many things happening, the elite military unit doesn’t get a whole lot of good face time. When they’re around, Tyrese isn’t very good, but Duhamel is still the man. Needed more of him.
4. Jetfire. I think Jetfire had a really cool look (SR-71 Blackbird) but had an annoying accent. He also didn’t get to do much – he showed up at the end to kick some serious ass, but wasn’t around very long. Sort of a Darth Maul moment, wish they would have kept him but ditched his accent. (Apparently, John Turturro provided the voice)
3. Too Long. This movie was maybe 10 minutes too long. If you’ve read my reviews, I appreciate a tighter cut movie with a little less meandering. This clocks in right around 2:30 and I think it would have worked a bit better at like 2:20.
2. Robot Fluids. The last film had Bumblebee taking a leak and this film has robots that spit out fluids, ‘bleed’ some sort of oil or something, and have inner goo stuff in a scene or two. Didn’t love it, especially when they ‘bled’ or had fluids come out of their mouths.
1. Too Many Robots? Above I mentioned that I loved how many robots there were – and there are a lot, and it’s awesome. However, we don’t get enough of them. Arcee seemed like she was going to be a big deal from early concept art, but we don’t really get to appreciate the female Autobot. On the Decepticon side, there are some awesome looking baddies, like a giant, shielded artillery robot, that doesn’t get nearly enough screen time. So while I appreciated how many there were, I would have liked to have gotten to know a select few of them (Arcee, Sideswipe) better.
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen seems to be dividing critics into the Love it or Hate it camp. Clearly, I’m on the Love it side of things. I don’t think you can really ask for much more out of a summer blockbuster or a Transformers movie. We don’t need to reinvent the Transformers as some darker characters or have them give us life lessons on harsh topics like spousal abuse and teen violence. What I want out of a movie like this is a damn good time full of robots, explosions, and beautiful girls sweating just a little bit. Michael Bay gave that to me, and I’m excited to go see it again later this week. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is an awesome time and the perfect summer blockbuster. Robot Mayhem Forever.
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