If you’re stuck for something on a rainy weekend, then you could go worse than getting along to Transformers. It’s a rollicking two+ hours of switch the brain off to ignore obvious story-line errors and just enjoy the ride.
Error one for example is the gorgeous lover interest quizzing the geek-destined-to-become-hero. Apparently she can’t remember him, despite they having been in the same class for 10 years. Believable, yes. But… earlier in the film the same girl had been watching said hero giving a presentation to their history class, and smiling like she just might be “interested”.
Like I say, brain off.
The story hinges on the threat of a superweapon that fell to Earth in the no so distant past. The good guys want to sop it falling into the bad guys hands. And people are just hapless vermin in the way. It’s a pretty obvious devise, and an old one. The hero gets to prove himself to the girl with obvious results. There’s the obligatory double-top-secret agents with stupid attitudes and an Area-51 under the Hoover dam. There’s the special forces guys with the weapons and know-how to kill some Decepticons with extreme prejudice. And of course, there’s the great, big, fuck-off mean robots. Some with senses of humour.
The film fair rolls along, with some pretty damn impressive special effects. I read somewhere recently that these days the mark of a good actor was knowing how to work with blue-screen. These ones are pretty good. And it’s blue-screen-a-rama. Once the robots really start kicking each other’s asses the film is basically a series of huge explosions, collateral damage, and a catalogue of the US military’s latest toys.
If there’s one complaint about the film, it’s the uncanny resemblance to a recruiting drive for the military. I half expected the geek-hero to be co-opted into the Marines as soon as he finishes high school.
Maybe that’s the plot of the obvious sequel.