Saturday, July 2, 2011

Transformers: Dark of the Moon

Back in the 1960’s, Buzz Aldrin and friends landed on the moon. What history forgot to tell us, however, is that they actually found some sort of alien technology there and brought it back home. That piece of technology was, in fact, a crucial weapon for the Autobots to win the war back in Cybertron. Eventually, they los, because the space ship carrying Sentinel Prime who invented the said weapon was shot down and crash landed on the moon. Megatron decides to exploit this piece of information to their advantage. And so begins a game of human and robot manipulation here and there until it all ends on a happy note. The Autobots saved us once again, hooray!

I am probably one of the few who gave the second Transformers movie five stars out of five. That was a rather unpopular review given the plethora of negative critiques for that movie. Well, I am not that hard to please. Overload me with CGI if you do not have a good storyline and that would be okay. Give me a good story if you have bad CGI and that would be perfectly fine by me as well. Anyway, Michael Bay seems to have noticed that the Transformers franchise under his helm has been losing focus and has become a pointless showcase of special effects, which has remained to be the only consistent aspect that never fails to amaze the audience. This movie tries to balance things out.

It has been almost a month since X-Men First Class’ attempt to rewrite the Cuban Missile Crisis with a mutant story arc. Michael Bay follows suit by giving his take on the Apollo 11 Moon Landing with an alien civilization discovery twist. They even got Buzz Aldrin himself to portray, uhm, himself, and announce to the whole world that they actually went to the moon on a top secret mission. Now that is weird. The movie starts with a bored Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) feeling worthless because he could not find a job after saving the world twice, until an opportunity arises and he is back in action again along with his Autobot friends.

Megan Fox is replaced by Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, an ex-Victoria’s Secret model whose pair of legs just never ends. The former’s absence is not explained, or perhaps it was but I just did not hear it because the sound system of the cinema where I watched sucks. Maybe Optimus Prime accidentally stepped on her one day while on a picnic or something. Who knows! Rosie is a good replacement anyway. She is telegenic and her character serves her purpose. She screams prettily. When she does not, she pouts. She runs and gets tossed around falling buildings while wearing high heels. She also wears a lot of white, which remains immaculately crisp despite all the chaos.

The movie has a lot of climactic moments which quickly shifts to being anti-climactic because the technique is abused. Oh no, Optimus is gonna die!!! Oops, Megatron saved him. Oh no, Sam is falling off a building! Oh no, Sam is gonna die! Oops, the Autobots saved him. Oh no, Bumblebee is gonna die!!! Oops, the falling debris saved him. Damn, that was repetitive. The trick easily gets old but at least it gives you a moment of despair and adrenaline rush. The action and non-action here is balanced. That is good news if you got exhausted of the overload we all got in the second movie. Perhaps this is the reason why the movie felt a bit weird. We all got accustomed to the awesome visual effects as a substitute for plot development. Here, it is not all that. The characters actually talk and the plot unfolds with a few mini twists.

There are a few scenes after the initial rolling of credits. John Turturro is funny. He and Frances McDormand look good together onscreen and have good chemistry. Frances McDormand looks like Felicity Huffman. Are they related? Anyway, is this the last movie in the series? Maybe next time the Cybertron refugees could take their civil war to Venus or Mars? I do not think they would mind the heat, or lack of it.

It's in Cyrillic! It's like all those buttons you never push on a calculator! HAHAHA!

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