“Transformers 3 – Dark of the Moon” (2011)
“There is no dark side in the moon, really. As a matter of fact it’s all dark.” ~Pink Floyd
Once again, Hollywood offers proof that a kick-ass cast and an obscene budget does not guarantee a good movie. Malkovich, Turturro, Nimoy, McDormand, and Buzz freakin’ Aldrin aren’t able to save this movie.
The special effects are great. The storyline is actually pretty good – all the stuff about NASA and the moon landings is pretty clever. The acting is good enough. The production values: top notch, the best that money can buy. Great looking cars, though not much time is spent on them – they’re kind of stuck in there as they would be referenced in a rap song. Great looking female lead, though she doesn’t seem to fit the movie, really. So what’s really wrong?
I can sum it up in two words: Who Cares?
There’s so much over-acting and melodrama and posturing that after a little while none of it matters much anymore. It’s just too much. And there is so much going on – not in the storyline, but in all the action – it’s like an endless, 2-hour string of jump-cuts. In other words: It’s a Michael Bay film – complete with ample product placements.
For kids or fans of the genre and/or style, my review will seem completely insane. How could I not love this movie? It looks so great and so much shit gets blowed up. And maybe that’s the point. This is a kids movie. This isn’t high art. This isn’t Apocalypse Now. Bay has a formula and he makes big box office with it. And from that perspective, this movie is a success.
The problem is that it’s all so overdone and formulaic that you can’t really connect with anything. The lead is so over-the-top goody-goody-heroic you want to see him ground to dust. The girlfriend is hot but just wears short dresses and screams, basically. The bad guy is a dipshit, hardly worth the energy to dislike. The CIA director is completely unbelievable. The ‘bots are boring to listen to after a while. And the peripheral characters are all one-dimensional. “Battle LA” had more of a connection to the cast than this thing did.
The only level this movie works at, for an adult viewer anyway, is as pure witless eye candy. Sit down, zone out, and let the special effects and dumbness wash over you. So, if you’re looking for some mindless fun, something to watch while you snarf down a trough of popcorn, go see Transformers 3.
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