Transformers: Age of Extinction

Transformers: Age of Extinction Movie ReviewParamount Pictures
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, language and brief innuendo.
Running time: 165 minutes.
One and a half stars out of four.

Long before Optimus Prime hoists his hulking metal frame onto the back of a giant robot dinosaur, wields his mighty sword and rides valiantly away to save the planet once more, “Transformers: Age of Extinction” plays like a parody of the bloated, self-important Michael Bay blockbuster.

Finally, with the fourth film in the epic franchise about vehicles that turn into talking robots, Bay seems to recognize the innate ridiculousness of these characters, this world, this overblown aesthetic that is his signature. That’s not to say that it’s “good,” per se. With a running time of two hours and 45 minutes, “Age of Extinction” is butt-numbingly long and padded with hilariously obvious product placement to appeal to the widest possible international audience. (It’s just two minutes shorter than “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” for a bit of perspective.) But Bay, his international cast and his massive explosives team at least seem slightly more self-aware in telling this terrible tale.

Actually, the script from returning writer Ehren Kruger (who wrote the second and third “Transformers” installments) feels like two entirely separate movies slammed up against each other. The first half or so takes place in the United States — in rural Texas and urban Chicago, to be exact. The second part shifts to China for reasons that have nothing to do with narrative cohesion and everything to do with marketing. All of it is shot with the false grandeur of a Super Bowl ad for Ford F-150 trucks. Waving fields of grass, nostalgia-tinged sunsets and American flags abound. Then the robots show up, and everything gets blown to bits.

At least you can actually see who is doing what to whom this time. So often in the “Transformers” series, the big set pieces consist of massive, twisted hunks of metal slamming into each other in indiscernible fashion — a jumble of shiny machinery, noise and destruction. The details seem finer this time and the 3-D effects often make them pop. But the story is so slapdash, the characters are so shallow and the entire endeavor is so self-indulgent, it all outweighs any vague, sporadic pleasures.

On the upside: Shia LaBeouf is nowhere to be found. He never existed as far as this universe is concerned. This time, Mark Wahlberg plays our reluctant hero, the awesomely named Cade Yeager. The south Boston native doesn’t even begin to affect a twang, even though his character is a small-time inventor living on a farm in small-town Texas. Cade is the overprotective, widower father of an insanely hot 17-year-old daughter named Tessa (Tara Reid look-alike Nicola Peltz) who enjoys traipsing about the property in ass-hugging Daisy Dukes and high-heeled ankle boots. She functions in the same eye-candy role as Megan Fox and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in the previous films, and is afforded about as much characterization.

While helping renovate a decaying movie theater — a once-lavish palace whose owner laments the prevalence of mindless sequels and blockbusters, hardy har har — Cade discovers a beat-up semi truck. Back home with a little elbow grease in his quaintly scruffy barn, he reveals that the vehicle is the venerable Optimus Prime himself (voiced as always by the esteemed Peter Cullen with more dignity than these films deserve). Seems the Autobots, the good-guy robots who were once considered loyal friends to us humans, are now viewed as threats and they’ve gone on the run.

Kelsey Grammer plays the CIA honcho in charge of tracking down and wiping out all Autobots. (Titus Welliver is his driven and diabolical right-hand man.) A scenery-chewing Stanley Tucci plays the high-tech corporate guru who’s secretly helping Grammer’s character; he’s the private contractor who’s creating a shape-shifting metal that will serve as the basis for an army of high-powered government robots. Watching these two seasoned actors spar provides some of the few genuine high points in “Age of Extinction,” but it’s simultaneously depressing because they deserve such better dialogue.

The set-up is an obvious metaphor about illegal immigration and post-9/11 terrorist fears – one that’s quickly established in an effort to achieve relevance or gravitas or something, and then just as quickly abandoned. Bay & Co. are more interested in blowing Cade’s house to smithereens during the military’s hunt for Optimus Prime.

Suddenly thrust into the vortex of danger, Cade must escape with Tessa and her older boyfriend, Shane — an Irish racecar driver, of all things, played by Jack Reynor — in hopes of protecting Prime and his pals. (Cade hates the guy immediately, but the two eventually will bond over their shared love of firearms.) Also along for the ride is Cade’s obligatory, wise-cracking best friend (T.J. Miller), who drives around with a surfboard constantly strapped to the top of his car, even though he lives in middle-of-nowhere Texas. Their quest takes them to Tucci’s headquarters in Chicago — a city that supposedly was decimated by the robot battles of the third film, but the place looks just fine — and finally, China.

This entire, final segment of the film is astute acknowledgement of the power of the Chinese market. It’s also shameless pandering to the highest degree (or the lowest, depending on your viewpoint). It’s not enough for Cade to stop what he’s doing while being pursued through the streets of Chicago to open a Bud Light and take a satisfied swig. It’s not enough for Shane to mention that he’s been sponsored by Red Bull while listing the many ways in which he’s right for Cade’s daughter. Once we arrive in China, Tucci’s assistant there — played by the slinky and sophisticated Li Bingbing — takes a long and luxurious sip of bottled water while sitting in the back of a chauffeured car. I don’t read Mandarin so I don’t know what brand it is, but mmm-mm, does it look refreshing.

Then the giant robot dinosaurs arrive to provide Prime and his buddies with transportation, and you realize that this “Transformers,” perhaps even more than its predecessors, was cobbled together in the minds of 8-year-olds after all.

61 Comments on “Transformers: Age of Extinction

    •  by  Claude

      Bitter? Well I supose I would be bitter too if I had to watch a idiotic piece of drivel for almost 3 hours. Or are you seriously implying that the only reason she might give this awful sounding trash a bad review is because she’s jealous of it somehow? Grow up. I was fed up with these shitty movies after the first one. I can’t imagine anyone over the age of 12 with at least an average IQ getting catty and defensive because a writer with her own opinions didn’t like the latest product placement extravaganza… I mean Michael Bay movie.

      •  by  Claude

        And I say this as a huge Batman fan who was probably at least a bit butt-hurt that she didn’t like The Dark Knight Rises, but I’d never slag her off or send her death threats because of it.

    •  by  T

      This is a brilliant piece of writing, regardless of whether or not the movie was any good. Perhaps Bay could take a lesson from this kind of prose and put in a good word for some decent writers and the movies might not be so pedestrian.

  1.  by  KScott

    I’m surprised critics are giving these movies anything higher than zero ratings.

    Do you suppose that Bay might ever genuinely put effort into the story for one of these things? I mean, people will see them anyway. I doubt a little creativity would hurt. (Firing the talentless Ehren Kruger would help, I’m sure.)

    •  by  Kyle

      I completely agree that they need to fire Ehren Kruger. The dialogue and pacing is just utter nonsense. I love Transformers as a franchise, but these movies… atrocious. I love the toys and the complexities and seeing them on the big screen, but Michael Bay was a director for commercials, and Ehren Kruger is a shitty writer. He’s already signed on to write for the 5th one on imdb, so there goes those hopes. It disappoints me so much that Hollywood is doing this to this franchise. Transformers movies would sell regardless. It would not hurt one bit to actually try to make them good. The Transformers: Prime CG tv show was excellent, AND it was produced by Orci and Kurtzman, who left the live action franchise. The show won multiple daytime emmys. It saddens me, really…

      •  by  Bob

        Eventually I am hoping it will catch up. They need to get rid of Bay and ask someone like Cameron, Joss Whedon, or Guillermo del Toro. I mean I had no vested interest in Hellboy at all, but it was witty and cool. In fact it was amazing that a director could take a series like that and immerse me into it with all the weird characters and actually make it good. Cameron does amazing things with existing franchises for example, Aliens. Joss Whedon has just done some insanely good story and plot developments. For example, Firefly, Toy Story, Doll House, Angel etc… The man can write an excellent story arc and knows how to develop characters.

        I would love a reboot where they use the iconic vehicles that they were. I mean you can update it, for example, you can make SoundWave a Tablet or Laptop with his minions as USB devices, instead of a cassette player although the comedic value of having him a cassette player these days would be funny and having Bumblebee a modern bug instead of an old one. Although again having him as a “classic car” would still be a nice touch.

        Anyway, you need to have a movie where it opens on Cybertron and you understand the relationship between the Autobots and the Decepticons. How the Autobots where the workers and the Decepticons where the military and how Megatron took over. Then you can have the remaining autobots fleeing in their ship called “The Arc” with the aid of Jetfire. They are pursued by the Decepticons where they board the Arc and eventually crash land on prehistoric Earth. This triggers the “Mass Extinction” event erupting the volcano. The Arc and the AutoBots and Decepticons wind up going offline because of that and the ship is buried in the mountain.

        Fast forward to today, and you get the start of our human characters living their lives where everything is good. An earthquake tremor happens and a crack in the volcano appears. No eruptions, however the crack opens a thermal vent which allows the ship to turn on its automation systems. During the earthquake, Soundwave falls into the repair station and the ship being confused on who is who, auto repairs Soundwave. Soundwave, developing his character to show you that he has a “respect and loyality” towards megatron, places him to get repaired. Megatron then orders all the Decepticons to be repaired, Aka StarScrean, AstroTrain, etc…. Then they leave by blasting a hole creating an entrance.

        In MegaTron’s “superiority” complex he claims how he will make Earth their slave as they harvest Energon from Earth. Then on the way out have Megatron kick Jetfire calling him a worthless traitor to rot and leave. Then have Megatron shoot the mountain to bury the rest of the autobots but in doing so his kick that dislodged JetFire now falls into the repair table. Jetfire then repairs Optimus and … we know have our movie witht he Autobots protecting earth from the Decepticons.

      •  by  Katie

        What I would like to know is this. If the movie was so bad, why is it the only film to make 1 Billion dollars this year?

        •  by  Naga

          … because everyone saw it to make sure if it is really that bad.
          I believe Bay makes this for the kids (evident by the screenplay & dialogue)… and there is at least a billion of them out there with a kid’s mind & can afford a movie ticket.

          •  by  Jake

            Imagine that. A movie based on kids toys being targeted towards kids. What more did you want? Seriously, when is the last time you either received or, less likely, purchased anything that involved the Hasbro Corp?

            As someone who grew up with Transformer shows and toys, I was disappointed with the fact that half of the “transformers” didn’t so much transform as kind of fall apart and then reassemble into something else completely different. However, I’m an adult. Kids, having no real understanding of the fact that they are watching a movie based on a 30 year old tv show, are not about to start thinking “You know what? That camaro’s hood wouldn’t look like that if it was on an 18′ tall walking robot.”. They are busy thinking “Oh cool! Look at the yellow robot!”.

            To start trashing Michael Bay because you think you would have done something differently basically shows that you haven’t a clue. The man put out a movie that is considered a box-office smash. I, for one, seldom have any desire to see movies that are awarded that title. They’re generally mentally devoid. Then again, sometimes it’s nice to kinda flatline for a while and just watch the little one sitting next to you light up with excitement.

            In short, the movie was made for kids. If you’re an adult and were truly entertained, try to not color outside the lines and wipe off your chin.

        •  by  James

          The reason it made a billion dollars is because they cleverly power marketed this film in ASIA which had billions of potential movie watchers.
          This movie did “ok” within our Nation. Nothing ground breaking. However, in China (especially)… it raked an astounding amount of money.

          In fact… other movie companies are now starting to power market their films in ASIA now. There was another film that recently raked in 1 billion dollars… I forgot which one it was..but apparently, also made it’s big money in ASIA. That’s multiple countries with billions of people.

  2.  by  Rob

    So right. Crappy humor and dialogue. Explosions galore. It truly was michael bay doing a parody of all his other movies.

  3.  by  James Nichols

    Well written and possibly more entertaining that the movie it reviewed.
    Regards,
    James

  4.  by  Harry

    I’m just glad they didn’t let Bay anywhere near Godzilla 2014. He would of made Emmerich look like Martin Scorsese. Michael Bay is the worst director in the history of the motion picture industry. No amount of money or CGI is going to change that and what is Micheal Bays obsession with the leg pan? Those extended creep shots of girls legs are kinda creepy and he does them in every movie. Michael Bay is a strange confused man who makes awful awful movies that make a billion dollars for some reason nobody is able to figure out. Directors like Bay and Emmirech just won’t got away. They linger like a fart in a mitten and stink the place up with there crappy movies.

  5.  by  dave

    I enjoyed the movie. There was cohesion between the US and China portions of the movie. I just saw the gross for the weekend. Not bad for your poor rating. Why should we read and listen to your reviews in the future? Pretend you are a normal human being just going to the movies for enjoyment.

    •  by  Claude

      We can all point to movies we loved that didn’t do well at the box office and movies we loathed that inexplicably were big hits. So pointing to a critically reviled movie and saying “See, it must be good, it made a lot of money” is specious reasoning at best and willfully obtuse at worst. And telling someone who disagrees with you about a movie to “pretend to be a normal human being” is just asinine.

      •  by  cleo

        No its called go into it and try to not look for what’s wrong that’s what “pretend your a normal human being” but obviously you can’t even do that.

    •  by  James

      Speak for yourself. Her review was spot on, regardless of box office rake ins. The only reason this pile of trash made so much money, was because it was power marketed in Asia, considering parts of it was filmed in China…being a country with BILLIONS of potential watchers. Here in America though…it made a standard. The wave lengths are obviously different and far easier to entertain and satisfy in other countries.
      A lot of us here want a little more quality, not just in the visual aspects.

  6.  by  James

    Agreed. The movie sucked. Bay sold out to China and for a bunch of ad placements. Nevertheless, people will still flock to watch this mindless flick, even though it’s just to see how bad it is.

    •  by  Anneleisa

      Any fan of this series will appreciate this movie and what they have done to appeal to a international audience. You make it sound like we should be ashamed of the fact the made it an international movie? Fans of Transformers have no boundaries. You sound so ignorant even saying Bay “sold out to Chinese interest.” absurd. It’s ignorant statements from people like you that give bigotry a new face. Grow up and own your mind. This movie is the future for what REAL Hollywood blockbusters will look like. They will appeal to all colors, creeds, genders, sexual orientation, and race. Get with the program or get left behind.

      •  by  James

        He DID sell out to China. Bay doesn’t give a crap about you! LOL.. He wants your MONEY. Nothing more, nothing less. He knows these movies are crap. He only said so himself on his OWN website. He had to figure out a way to make sure this film would succeed and writing a good story would not be possible with him holding the ropes. So, power market the film to China, a country with billions of potential watchers. I sound like a broken record player. Do a little research. That’s all it takes. It’s business big boy. Bay knows how to play it right. Even if the movie is indeed terrible. Which it is.

        •  by  cleo

          Haha you make it sound like Bay is the only director ever to not care about YOU and just want your MONEY and to SELL OUT to CHINA.

  7.  by  Jack Morrison

    In all honesty, I believe this film was harshly judged and not just by you. I’m not singling out anyone in particular. I don’t see what the problem with product placement is. Nobody’s forcing you to take out your wallet and buy whatever has a quick cameo in the film.

    I think the main issue with why this movie is hated was the run time. If you ignore everything else, I’m sure people would still have a problem with the run time. It’s okay to have a long movie. I think it really depends on if action is your thing. And I can’t complain. Even if it is long, it can’t hurt to at least make an attempt to not be pessimistic in the presence of Michael Bay’s name in the credits. Instead we could say we got two times our money’s worth, seeing how this is almost two-times the length of an average movie.

    There was a little change up here and there than just basic explosions we expect to see from Bay. Optimus being stabbed by his own sword, Cade’s daughter and her boyfriend only narrowly saving Cade himself from the creator by freeing Optimus, and more. And the emotions really get serious at moments when Cade’s daughter is caught in the net with Optimus, and when Cade wishes to go back to help Optimus. And the music played in both of these scenes only made things more intense.

    On the other hand though, I can agree that the sudden setting change was a little unnecessary, but would it have made sense to have another Chicago destroyed? I’d at least give Bay some credit for not doing something like the Hangover Part II did in its entirety.

    I believe the film gives several important messages though, and they are delivered quite accurately. Like most of the films in this series, I believe the overall theme is that we shouldn’t fear what we don’t understand, in this case, the Autobots. The alliance with the Dinobots shows an excellent example of teamwork, even though the Autobots already do a good job of that on their own, let alone Mark and the gang fixing Optimus to begin the adventure. And of course, the relationship between Cade, his daughter, and many others somewhat gives the message that there’s nothing more powerful than the bond that brings a family together. In short, this film has several messages that aren’t given directly, but can often be up to the viewer’s imagination. For the record, I think it would be wise to at least ignore Bay’s name is in the credits to avoid being quick to judge, just because he’s had a few bad movies. I’m sure Stephen Speilburg and even Christopher Nolan had a bad movie at one point or another.

    •  by  Michael

      2 times 1.5 is still a 3 out of 4 star film. Quality over quantity.

    •  by  mrwhopee

      I pay to watch a movie, not a f*king commercial for Red Bull, Victoria’s Secret, Bud Light, Beats by Dre, GM, Chinese water, etc. I already watch a dozen or so of those for like 30 minutes before the movie even starts.

      That’s not even talking about how shitty the movie was, I don’t expect the godfather with transformers I just want something that’s not written for 8 year olds yet marketed towards adults.

    •  by  Anthony Gosselin

      I know I’m really late on this, but the reason that product placement is a bad thing is because it ruins whatever experience viewers may have gotten from the film by indiscreetly cramming advertisements into a film. For a more compact example of how startling and noticeable product placement can be when it jams itself into the middle of things, look at Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda” video and take note of how out of place the featured objects feel.

  8.  by  Harry

    Best review of this awful movie that I’ve read so far. Only wish that I had read it prior to seeing the movie.

  9.  by  shawn

    Sick of Optimus prime getting his ass kick every time and needed help from the humans to win the fight.

    almost 3 hours of advertisements.

    Can someone tell me how they managed to drive from Beijing to Hong kong over night? If it’s made for the 8 years old, i understand

    •  by  Anneleisa

      They were in the spaceship dork. Did you even watch the movie? Or too simple minded to follow the “made for an 8 yr old ” dialogue?

  10.  by  Midgetto

    lol missing what made Transformers so interesting in the first place. Also something mentioned in the movie “Big” with Tom Hanks. They are not cars that transform into robots… They are Robots that transform into cars. You may not think it a large deal but it is what got the original animated series and toys out out there.

  11.  by  Richard

    If it was my job to make a movie that was engineered to make as much money as possible, that movie would probably end up a lot like this one. Cars! Robots! Babes! Guns! Alien Robots! Explosions! Dinosaurs! More Babes! Kung Fu! I’d pack it all in there, it wouldn’t have to make sense, or be memorable, or even be all that enjoyable. It just has to be there, in all its shiny awesomeness, enticing people to buy tickets.

  12.  by  Jared

    This movie is not trying to be something it isn’t. It’s not made to get good reviews or win oscars, it’s made to bring out the child in all of us and that’s just what it did. Personally I enjoyed it and would see it again. The cgi camera angles explosions sound and score were unbelievable. Critics love to hate on micheal bay, and always will. So what the guy there in some bud light and Oreo placements. He gives exactly what we want a movie for 3 hours I don’t have to think, I sit back and enjoy awesome robots fight scenes explosions got chicks, stop hating and go watch a guy with aids smuggling drugs across theb order with a cross dresser, yea much more entertaining, lol

    •  by  Remy

      A terrible movie is a terrible movie. Regardless of the motivation. The Raid wasn’t created to win an Oscar, Neither was the new Xmen movie, or he Capt America one. Chasing an Oscar isn’t the sole reason to at least try to make a good movie. At this point the TF series is bulletproof, they will make money no matter what. So would it hurt Bay to at least try to and make the movie good? It’s not like a good writer cost more than a bad one, and I am sure the guy who has written 3 terrible TF movies in a row is not given a small check for his effort. It’s like Bay basically is only fueled by his gigantic ego, and demonstrates the key difference between pride and ego.

      Pride would fuel him to prove “the people that love to hate him” [Actually i’d like to take a time out to address this little comment. People who love movies probably love hating a man who seems to love making bad movies. Like if I were a vegetarian, and someone kept making these massive chain of salad shops but all the salads had meat in them and like you could’t not get the salad without meat. I’d hate that guy too. It’s not like they hate him for his awesome head of hair or something. They hate his work, which is terrible…or at the very least has become terrible in the second half of his career.]

      Back to the topic of his ego. His ego, drives him to actually want to spite everyone. This is the terrible film makers defense. When like hacks like George Lucas, or Uwe Boll defend their movies. Nothing in the series has evolved, or grow, or actually get better. They just get longer runtimes and more advertising placements. Bay just sits on his piles of money showing his critics he can shart anything on to film, then have his CGI team do their magic and just sit back and roll in the dough. Money is his sole justification at this point.

      We know have nearly 10 hours of Transformers cinema….equal to a season of Game of Thrones. In all that time, not one memorial scene comes to mind. Other than terrible ones like Autobot heaven, or giant robot balls. I mean it’s reaching a point where its almost like his goal is to make bad movies on purpose. I am not sure how anyone can innocently make 10 hours of bad movies with an unlimited budget and crackerjack SFX team, and 30 years of characters and strorylines to mine for inspiration.

      All that can be said is the writer from the last three terrible movies has signed on to do the 5th. This movie has a 17% rating on RT…what possible reasoning can they actually use to keep using him other than to show they’re staying the course with this trainwreck of a franchise.

    •  by  Anneleisa

      I agree. Anyone who is a fan of transformers series will love this movie. Product placements and all. The acting was as good of not better than the first transformer movie. It was long but the story made sense.

    •  by  Anneleisa

      Exactly! I couldn’t have said it better! People are ridiculous expecting a freaking Oscar winning Sci fi movie based on alien robots. Use your imagination people.

    •  by  Charlie

      Bring out the child in me? If by that you mean I threw a tantrum, drunk from a bottle, passed out, and woke up every two hours crying and wanting a tit then yeah it definitely brought out the child in me. Otherwise all it did was destroy one more of my child hood heroes.

  13.  by  Christy Lemire

    You guys are cracking me up with your comments. Thanks so much for taking the time to visit and share your thoughts. And thanks for the “Big” reference — you have a good point, they are “robots in disguise” as the song goes. And now that song is stuck in my head. My logic is, we see them as vehicles first, and then they reveal themselves to be robots. (Wow, it is too early in LA on a Monday to be having this conversation! Need more coffee now ….)

  14.  by  Zack Carey

    OVerall I think this movie was the best of the four. I’m not a professional critic and I understand obvious product placement is bad but I can accept it sometimes. If its subtle I think it makes the movie more realistic. Like when Bingbing drinks from the water bottle. Do you guys drink nameless water bottles? No you drink Poland springs or Dasani or Ethos. Do you drink nameless beers? No you drink Bud Light, PBR or Budweiser. There’s more product advertisment in my garbage can than in any movie ever. End rant

  15.  by  Ben Grimm

    Well these movies are created to appeal to the lowest common denominator, so if you did enjoy it and want more, congrats you are that common denominator. I long ago quit paying my money to watch this “director” destroy my childhood nostalgia. It seems he’s not done though, since he’s backing the TMNT abomination now. One thing that perplexes me is why do fans who get upset with this man’s creations continue to pay their hard earned dollars to watch his movies? Considering how successful his movies are, one can only conclude that his approach of appealing to the lowest common denominator is paying off. It also reveals the sad truth about the quality of audiences.

    •  by  Joe

      Because it’s only $10-$15 to by a ticket at the cinemas and we have nothing else to do.

    •  by  jimc

      Lowest denominator? Your a moron. It’s for entertainment. Period. If you take it as more than that the problem is with you. No one goes to a transformers movie looking for Oscar material. It’s fun and explosions. Can it suck? Of course. Does someone being OK with comic book level scripts the lowest denominator? Not anymore than people who like Oscar winners are the highest. We all can enjoy both.

    •  by  lee

      I watched Pacific Rim knowing I would get what I wanted. Big robot, big monster, and go… ding.
      Sometimes I go to a movie for the plot. A beautiful mind was fun.

      Why is it that I am somegow inferior if I don’t care what the plot is? Are you somehow artistically or intellectually superior?

      If so, please, go make your own movie. I am sure the people who think like you will rave over it.

      Honestly I don’t care what causes you to like a movie. What I do care about is how people like you marginalize other people and somehow think you are enlightened.

      Apparently enlightenment doesn’t cure rudeness.

  16.  by  Daryle

    The Transformers movie is not high art worth of an Oscar? I am shocked!

    The studios and people who make movies like this seek an audience, not the approval of the critics. And based on revenue I would say they know exactly what they are doing.

    And all the harsh critic revenues only serve to grow the audience. Mr. Bay has you right where he wants you.

  17.  by  James

    You broke the cardinal rule of movie reviewing in your very first sentence. You spoiled the movie. Fail.

  18.  by  The Critic Critic

    Well, this write up like so many others sounds like the same opinion. The question I ask is, is it the same opinion about the movie? Or the same opinion of the other opinions. I’m always curious. Why would this critic or any other for that matter want to stray away from the avg. It may affect how serious people take them.

    This movie is full of holes. This movie is also full of Bay. This movie is STILL like it or not a MONUMENTAL on screen accomplishment by huge teams of very very talented people. Why is this always forgotten or not mentioned? Why is product placement not seen as a financier of a film and advertisement is a dwindling DVR viewership. Why is that SELLING OUT? I’m shocked at the immaturity.

    “Christy” and the boundaries of her talents seem to lay in a blog, registered to rotten tomatoes and some writing skills. The question is, are half of these critics actually qualified to be a critic of a film? I guess not as we don’t know what qualifications it takes. I would say “not much”, Christy and so many others simply have found a medium to transmit opinion. Fact based or not. Simply and opinion.

    We do know however what qualifications it takes to make a movie, Michael bay and his team love him or hate him and certainly qualified.

    I too came out of the theatre with more questions than answers. I too came out of the theatre bludgeoned by so many fight scenes and an endless timeline. I too found holes and hated the silly jokes.

    I however still respect!! I still respect talent and team work! I still respect money and business. I still respect effort.

    I don’t respect trumped up bloggers who enjoy the sounds of their own voices a little too much.

    PS: the movie shifted to china because that is the worlds most populated area. Detonating the seed turns all organic things into metal. Were you not listening???? Probably not, you were too busy being a critic and being “critical”. Try WATCHING first before you make your mind up.

  19.  by  Faith

    People don’t know a good movie when they see it obviously

  20.  by  Aaron

    Couldn’t help but think the same thing. I knew it was going to be mindless and thought it would be kinda fun. It felt they showed up on set each day and said “what do YOU think should happen?” “I dunno…China?” “Yeah, alright” “Dinobots?” “…sure”

    Fin

  21.  by  Tim

    I think we all got to remember something, that is these movies are for kids, who loves fast paste lots of action and it is to have parents/adults to bring them to see it. It is funny how we are so quick to bash people down when it comes to watching movies when I know if you may not come out with a better story line that everybody may enjoy. These movies are based off of a kids animated TV series but brought into real life films. It seems like we are trying to make something like Transformers become reality as if it is a true thing… This is fantasy and so what if the film jumps around not making complete sense with what is going on… it is a movie, you want real life stuff then stop watching these movies…

  22.  by  Nathan T. Rhodes

    Do not listen to the detractors for nothing on Earth will ever satisfy your inner Transformers geek more than witnessing the utter, complete and total redemption of Michael Bay. With one glorious fell swoop this evidently slow-to-warm-up-but-eventually-wizard-like filmmaker has expunged all his previous crimes against the Transformers fan base and finally delivered them to their deservedly blissful state of Cybertronian nirvana.

    Like a twenty first century Jesus armed with $200 million dollars, Bay has redeemed even the gravest of the sins of our childhood. Not only has he risen phoenix-like, still burning yet majestic, from the putrid black ashes that remained from the burning of our childhood dreams and his own reputation. Incredibly, he has somehow also redeemed the once unforgivable abomination that was the ascension of Rodimus Prime. In one two and half hour expedition to the pinnacle of awesomeness he has made whole the millions of innocent hearts so cynically and selfishly broken all those years ago.

    Suddenly the pain and confusion that was so cruelly and needlessly inflicted upon us in 1986 can be forgotten. Even the fresher scars, the proverbial salt in the wound that is the memory of the first three piles of turd rubbed onto celluloid that Bay tried to pass off as Transformers films, have been forever healed. Like faithful, stubborn and persistent visitors to a highly priced and extremely talented plastic surgeon, we have had our scars forever erased.

    All those that have ever nestled into the sometimes prickly and often disappointing bosom of the Transformers geekdom, go forth like pilgrims to thine local cinema. Flock now so that you all can finally revel in your long overdue and much deserved cinematic birthright: a truly epic journey into the elusive and sublime joys of well thought-out and skilfully delivered Transformers ‘fan service’.

    This movie isn’t for the hordes. It isn’t for the unfortunate souls that weren’t brought up living and breathing robots from Cybertron. It’s not for the critics. It’s an expensive, much belated and exclusive gift made especially just for you. An epic, royally triumphant and completely kick-ass Transformers movie that respects the fan base while also creating a new folklore that not only doesn’t make you want to stab yourself in the face with a rusty nail while having your eyeballs lacerated by a million paper cuts, it is actually pretty awesome in its own right.

    A true fan will find it almost impossible not to love this film. It is simply that good.

    Michael Bay I never thought I would ever say this but, thank you. Even the $600 million odd dollars and approximately seven and a half hours of my life you wasted setting up the story line of this movie with those first three abominations now seems like time and money well spent. For after nearly thirty long years of shattered hopes and unfulfilled expectations, finally our inner 6 year olds can live the dream. Finally we can stand on the apex of the Mount Everest of 1980’s nostalgia – and wholeheartedly and enthusiastically enjoy a Transformers movie for the first time – all the while being snugly wrapped in a delightful bubble of restored faith, emancipation from loss and total satisfaction.

    Do not take heed of reviews written by people that have never transformed a toy from a robot to a car in their lives. Do not be distracted by accounts of gratuitous product placement. Worry not about a repeat of previously indecipherable shot composition and editing. Cleanse yourself of the horrible memory that is Shia LeBeouf.

    This film delivers much more in the way of fan service than any of the previous films. Some of it is subtle, some quite overt (Galvatron transforming into a cannon and Optimus spending some time looking much like his G1 alter ego in truck form are notable examples). The movie is peppered with a lot of little touches that would probably be lost on people new to Transformers, but that had me clapping the screen at stages. Some people actually applauded the movie when it ended.

    It’s like they finally aimed it at the fan base, rather than take it for granted that the fan base would go anyway and trying to make it work for everyone else. And I for one appreciated those touches as they have been sorely missing from the franchise. But regardless of whether that stuff resonates with you or not it still has a much better plot than any of the other films and importantly it’s a grand spectacle – almost without a doubt bigger and more outrageous than any other movie in history, period. It is simply EPIC.

    Anyone that is a true Transformers fan obviously wants to and tries to like these movies. Three times previous to this I have failed in this task more or less and pretty much became a card carrying member of the &@#% You Michael Bay You Killed My Childhood club. Yet this time when they take it in yet another direction that is completely incongruous with the beloved and sacred G1 mythology – I totally went with them instead of fighting it. And actually, it is pretty damn cool.

    I didn’t have to try to like this movie. As a Transformers mega-geek Age of Extinction was inherently enjoyable to me in nearly every way. Plus as I said it has a lot of delicious little morsels for the old school fans that just become the cherry on top of a very sweet sundae. I am honestly and truly sorry for anyone that thinks they are a Transformers fan but that doesn’t absolutely love this movie. I think it is just a horrible defect in their personality. They will never be happy unless watching the movie is a mere carbon copy of their experiences watching the G1 cartoon. Yes Michael didn’t go in the direction we wanted him to at first. But where he has ended up should allow us to forgive if not forget and appreciate the unique and incredible nature of this motion picture.

    When we thought all hope was lost, Michael Bay has given us what we have been wanting all these years. But for some their own cynicism will not allow them to celebrate the occasion. To them I say let the 6 year old inside you finally let go of all the pain and rip up your Bay Haters membership card. All the Transformers aficionados that are brow beaten, dejected and void of all hope should rest assured that finally Michael Bay has miraculously managed to not completely &@#% up a Transformers film.

    The jaded, dejected and resentful among the once wide-eyed and awestruck Transformers mega-geeks: rejoice! For you are the chosen ones. You are the chosen few for whom Transformers: Age of Extinction won’t be a loud and obnoxious destruction of two and a half perfectly good hours of your life. It will be an exhilarating, deeply satisfying and ultimately spiritual experience.

  23.  by  Frasito

    It’s wanky, head up your ass critics like you that bring down a movies score in the first place.

    You clearly went into this movie wanting to hate it! No wonder it dragged on and you didn’t enjoy it. If anything your review dragged on! Just say you hated it and be done with it.

    I just saw this movie and I loved it!
    It’s not meant to be intelligent, it’s not meant to be some brilliantly written movie full of clever writing and compelling dialogue. It’s Transformers. Robots smashing robots, explosions and gargantuan stupidity is meant to be central. And it sure is.

    The visuals in this movie were awesome! Getting rid of the annoying old characters was a master stroke.

    The action was relentless and I was having too much fun to sit there and even so much as think about product placement…

    This movie isn’t designed for the intelligent female critic. So it’s a waste of time you even watched this and the took the time to write a bitter review as if you were expecting to watch some sort of wanky award winning masterpiece.

    Seeing all the top critics reviewing this and ripping it apart for things that aren’t relevant to this type of movie is painful to watch.
    What the hell were all these people expecting? Get over yourselves!

  24.  by  Bay Splosion

    Great Action. Lame human characters. Marky Mark did good, but to go from a backyard mechanic to an espionage and soldier was quite absurd. At least he didnt go around screaming like Shia Ladouchebag. Eye candy was hot but boring and useles. Boyfriend was gay and carried around a stat rape get out of jail free card..really? More proof Bay loves banging young chicks. He’s even bringing back Fox to play in TMNT.. “want a part.. I got just the part for ya” to summarize a quote from Jay and Silent Bob. He has no problem killing off major character transformers with no lament and creating his own Bayformers every movie. Galvatron was a complete joke. I wish they at least would have used Leanard Nimoy here instead of the lackluster sentinel prime. Also EXTREMELY LAZY WRITING for the Dinobots backstory. I have been a huge transformers collector for 20 years.. I watch the Bayformer movies, I like the action, but they are never worth rewatching. The stories are just horribly written, inconsistent, and more plot holes than bay can say F*ck you Thats why. now show me the money.

  25.  by  Frank

    This part of my comment has nothing to with your review other than accuracy, Wahlberg “The south Boston native doesn’t even begin to affect a twang,” is actually from Dorchester, not South Boston. It may seem silly but that would be like say a native of Brooklyn was from Queens or a Manhattan native. Different place within the city, there are actually no big stars from South Boston. Most actors that could be associated with South Boston like Wahlbergs (Mark, or Donnie) or Affleck and Damon because of Good Will Hunting and ties to Boston are either from Dorchester(section of Boston) or Cambridge(completely different city). Boston is town with very distinct separate neighborhoods and no one claims to be from one when you are from another. Very much like NYC, no one from the Bronks is claiming Queens or vise versa.

    Lastly its a Transformer movie you listed everything you thought was bad about it and made it sound great to a twenty something and thirty something male audience who will take anything that isn’t a romcom and stuff gets blown up. Its expendables with giant dinosaur robots! Think Pacific Rim meets Rambo, I will pay $10-$15 to see that every time. Also if they fit a bud light commercial in there as well it is not going to bother me as long as it does not go over the top where every 10 minutes I get another ad or product placement. I sit through them during a 3 hour long football game why not a few during a 3 hour long movie. especially if it means keeping down ticket prices. Whatever the studio needs to do to make money is fine as long as it does not take away from the entertainment.

  26.  by  Eric Fagan

    What a lot of people don’t get is that a lot of what Transformers is is explosions and fighting. There’s not that much of a story. So I think its a little idiotic for someone to criticize Bay for overusing explosions. Yes the writing with characters could be a little bit better, but as far as special effects with explosions and action what do you expect? Transformers is about two sides of transforming robots duking it out with one another so obviously there are going to be a lot of fiery explosions. Yes some are not needed but for the most part they are appropriate. All in all, with the exception of the writing, I think Bay as done well with this franchise.

  27.  by  Ger

    Lets start with the movie Title: TRANSFORMERS…What you expect to see is that: BIG ROBOTS THAT TRANSFORM and battle each other, from watching the 80’s cartoon that was all about it…I don’t know why people expect to “feel” the human emotion on a movie based on ROBOTS, meaning the robots are the STARS of these movies
    YES ITS FULL OF CGI, YES IT LACKS (HUMAN) STORY, but heck! that IS THE TRANSFORMERS since the 80’s
    About the product placement….THE 80’s CARTOON WAS A 22 MIN TV COMMERCIAL OF TOYS!!! AND NOBODY COMPLAINED! (I loved IT!)
    I don’t why most critics claims about the lack of “story” and overuse of CGI effects in this movie, when Gravity WAS ALL ABOUT IT and they love it (I found it boring)

  28.  by  Doug

    I agree with much of this review’s points but don’t agree with the conclusion drawn from them. I think that what a lot of people don’t understand, including this reviewer, is that the Transformers movies are based upon a child’s animated show (cartoon) and, as such, have plots, dialog, etc. based upon that and directed toward their target audience – children.

    What I wonder is why would an adult expect any Transformers movie to have adult dialog or plot or logic? If an adult likes big budget sci-fi eye-candy filled epics developed from children’s stories or simply liked the cartoons when they were younger and think its cool to see them brought to life on the big screen with live actors and modern special effects, then they will probably enjoy this movie – if they can sit through it all.

  29.  by  Bryan

    I personally enjoyed this movie and im also shocked to see all the haters out there, newsflash: if you dont like a franchise or are expecting a movie to b dissapointing then dont bother watching it and spare us from having to read all the negativity

  30.  by  Jake

    Though I already posted a reply above to one person who clearly doesn’t get that the Transformers concept was, is, and always will be aimed at children, I will drive home that concept further. I’m going to guess that everyone writing a response to this movie is able to drink legally and, from reading the posts, has seen the movie. I, personally, didn’t see the movie in the theaters. I waited until it came out for digital hd purchase and got it that way. I knew, from the moment I heard about it, I was going to buy it. I’ve purchased the other 3 TF movies already. I watch the original show on Netflix with my 4 year old. I’ve watched TF Prime with him as well. The shows were bad. They were over the top. The plot was non-existant. It was mindless drivel. I loved it. That’s right, despite all of those negative comments, I loved it. I was 4 when I first watched the tv show. It’s engrained in me. I remember playing with the toys (I got at least 2 every Christmas and 1 on my birthday for a few years). My son is like every other little boy I’ve ever encountered. He likes monster truck stuff, Legos, Tonka trucks, superhero’s, and transformers. I can’t speak for little girls (never was one), but little boys just go for that stuff.

    To assume that every movie that comes out is going for an award or to comment that Michael Bay should utilize “pride not ego” is ludicrous. How about going for money over no money.

    Product placement? Ok. Porsche in Risky Business. Ferrari in Ferris Beuller’s Day Off. LaCoste in Revenge of the Nerds. Perrier in Caddyshack. Evian in Dazed and Confused. The list is endless. To criticize that is stupid. Would a movie with no brands that could be recognized be better? Do you think you’d spend at least a few moments trying to figure out what that drink was or what did that actor just use? No, it’s used to make it more realistic. Besides, it’s easier to use products that are already around than it is to make up some fake product and it also helps lower the costs of making the movie which leads to….tada, more money!

    That’s why everyone who makes movies and charges for them does this. Don’t be so foolish as to think that anyone in Hollywood is altruistic.

    On the flipside of all of my previous post I will say this about this critic. Her review was well-written and does show that she actually watched the movie. I appreciate her offering her opinion and respect what she had to say and anyone else that didn’t like the movie is welcome to that opinion. It’s only the reasons that have been given here that have little to no validity when looking at all of the movies that are being produced.

  31.  by  bigsands

    Enjoyed reading the review. The future of blockbuster movie lie in making film which are believable and realistic. Believable in terms of the story and characters; realistic in terms of the action.

  32.  by  Zane

    Great review, movie was dreadful. I’m just surprised the writer didn’t include the obvious plotholes, lack of research. (Be it the canon or even simple laws of physics)

    This movie is so laughable I am actually still currently watching it whilst my girlfriend (whom loves Transformers) is dead asleep by my side. I’m not surprised by the product placement, mainly because… Well, honestly, how could you expect them to obtain the kind of budget necessary to produce this piece of trash. I would gladly write for them, even though I have absolutely zero experience in film. At least I know I would put the effort into doing some actual research.

    I would never pay for this movie, however, watching it is like watching a plane collide with a train full of fireworks. It’s terrible until you see the fireworks, the CGI in it is absolutely phenomenal. Though, it would never be enough to save this. I’ve literally read children’s books that were more planned out than this.

    My advice, unless you’re watching this drunk for free on Netflix at nine in the morning- skip it, save yourself time and money.

    •  by  Zane

      I take that back, besides language and some suggestive content… The only reasons to watch this is if you are a child- or drinking at 9 in the morning and it’s on Netflix.