By Cody (Phoenix, Arizona)
Transformers: Dark of the Moon is the third installment of the Transformers film franchise directed by Michael Bay. The Transformers movies have had an interesting ride. First one was in 2007 which wasn’t a great movie, but I really liked it. Then in 2009 came Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. Even though I’m a hardcore Transformers fan I deny the second film exists because it was so terrible (except the forest fight scene). Then in 2011 was the time for Michael Bay to roll out the red carpet for #3 and either revive Transformers or put the nails in the coffin. So, overall what was the end result? I think it mostly depends on your personal tastes in film.
The good in the film starts with the beginning. Without spoilers, I do enjoy how the film incorporates the Transformers existence within human history and how humanity was influenced by the presence of the Transformers. Another plus in the film is Optimus Prime. I feel that two different scripts were written for this movie, one for Optimus and one for everyone else because whereas Optimus has the best lines in this film, the other characters, human & Transformer drew the short straw and have nothing interesting to say.
Sentinel Prime as the movie’s villain is also a plus voiced by Spock himself Leonard Nimoy. Though Optimus has the best lines, Sentinel has some things to say that emphasize he is a determined and worthy opponent for anyone who is willing to stand against him.
The action and special effects are the things that have remained consistent throughout the series. The explosions, metal crashing against metal, buildings collapsing and the unique looks for each Transformer are visually pleasing. I also applaud the sound mixing/editing in the movie which has to capture so many angles of sound from an explosion here to bullets over there and the sound of transforming robots in the distance.
Though the movie has its ups, it also has an equal amount of downs. First off are the characters. The movie is called Transformers but we see more of the human characters than the robots the movie is named for. That’s a flaw this series has had since the beginning, however, in the first movie, it worked well because we had to introduce the Transformers to humanity so I can be merciful to the first movie, but the 2nd as well as this one put too much emphasis. The one human character I liked is Dylan Gould played by Patrick Dempsey. He is a human with secrets of his own, but I can’t say any more than I enjoyed his performance because you don’t see much of him. Patrick Dempsey’s character had potential but he’s so under-utilized.
The story is also a bit lacking and has some plot-holes in it that directly contradict things from the first two films. The story also seems a bit messy at points mostly on account of a two hour build-up discovering secrets and following clues which lead up to a forty-five minute end battle.
Like I mentioned earlier the lines and dialogue (with exception of Optimus, Sentinel, and Patrick Dempsey) is alright. There are some cheesy jokes and boring discussions.
The acting is not great either. I mentioned Patrick Dempsey who I believe is the best human in the movie, but he’s not in it enough for me to judge his acting (I’m not asking for the acting to be great in a Transformers movie. I’m not looking for this to be the next Citizen Kane in terms of acting, but at least try to be convincing). Shia La Beouf is alright but ultimately forgettable. Rosie Huntington is irrelevant for anything other than the purpose of a hot chick. John Malkovich is in this movie, and I’d rather forget he was and watch one of his other greats.
In the end, Transformers: Dark of the Moon has its good and bad points but to me neither side really rises above the other. It’s a very average film excelling in certain departments while failing to meet the quota in others.