New ‘Transformers’ Shows the Boring Side of War
Transformers: Dark of the Moon tries to be different from its predecessors. The previous two were all about the action and comedy, however the third tries to be more and that just does not work for this type of movie. Not to say that it is worse than the abysmal Revenge of the Fallen because it is better, but not by enough to redeem the franchise.
The plot of Dark of the Moon revolves around the final battle between the robots as the evil Decepticons plan to take over the world and turn the human race into slaves. The stakes are much higher than in the other two and it makes for a good trilogy-ender plot wise.
That is not the only improvement. Shia LaBeouf is given a far more interesting role to play than ever before. His character Sam becomes a hero rather than simply a middle man between the robots and humans. There is something very epic about watching Sam single handily take on a Decepticon and win.
Another improvement is the actress replacing Megan Fox. Rosie Huntington-Whiteley takes over as Sam’s new girlfriend and proves to be a better actress than Fox (and in this humble reviewer’s opinion, she is just a bit hotter).
Also, a lot of the annoying, unfunny humor from the previous installment is taken out. The racist robot twins are no where to be found here. It is not entirely gone but it is toned down enough that you will only roll your eyes a few times.
Unfortunately, Dark of the Moon fails to provide on the action that most will be excited for. We only get brief moments of awesomeness in the final battle between the robots. In fact, a majority of the impressive stunts are done by humans. The final battle is way too long and has strange gaps between action where nothing seems to be happening. It barely feels like a battle until its final moments. This is perhaps the most disappointing aspect of the movie since this franchise is known for its great action sequences between the robots yet there are so few of them here. I will say, however, that the 3D for the film is spectacular (possibly the best since Avatar).
As for the performances the movie is a mixed bag. Shia LaBeouf is still an enjoyable leading man while Frances McDormand is a good addition to the cast. I must also admit that I have enjoyed John Turturro in this franchise quite a bit and he continued to delight me in this one. As for the less than average performances John Malkovich has an absolutely meaningless role in the film. Patrick Dempsey gives the worst performance in the film as he just lacks the screen presence needed to stand out in a movie like this.
Dark of the Moon is neither the worst nor the best Transformers movie. It gets points for raising the stakes but loses points for having too long of gaps between robot on robot brawls. The movie is far too long and considering the plot is actually quite boring at times. Hopefully this marks the end of the franchise and we can all go back to ignoring Michael Bay. (** out of 4)