Surprisingly, this movie gets 3 Icees out of 5, and my wife would’ve given it more! I was totally ready to trash this movie. I hadn’t seen a single reviewer give it positive comments. Even in cases where (on rottentomatoes.com) a reviewer gave it a “fresh”, they just trashed it in their narrative. I think some reviewers were hoping that the title would be “Transformers: The Last Movie, We Promise”. You add in that I thought that this franchise had jumped the shark a couple of movies ago and I was really just going out of a sense of commitment since I had seen all the previous entries into the franchise. I am thankful I did because I was pleasantly surprised. For reasons that I can’t really explain, I liked it. I didn’t love it, but I liked it.
Yes, this movie has all kinds of problems, but all-in-all, it was enjoyable to watch. In fact, it’s easier for me to say what’s wrong with this movie as opposed to what’s right with it. It has a character that basically adds absolutely nothing to the movie (the teenage girl played by Isabele Moner), bots that you the director doesn’t really don’t get you to care about at all (even Bumblebee has lost some of his appeal), a total lack of respect for what the moon does for our planet (to explain that would be a spoiler), and just a variety of other things. The most frustrating thing for me though? It seems like some scenes were cut that led to other things happening. Suddenly allies show up and you really don’t know how or why. A friendly ship comes in and picks up good guys and you’re wondering, “where has that been all along?”. Then there’s this guy in Cuba that suddenly knows everything about the famous sword without any real explanation as to how he found out. Finally, and this is a pet peeve of mine, there is a famous line in all the trailers that just didn’t happen in the movie.
So, what’s good about this movie? Why did I like and my wife liked it more? It’s really tough to put into words. It’s just enjoyable to watch. It has pretty people includng a nice shot of Mark’s abs and Laura Haddock in a “stripper dress” (not my words) and the aforementioned teenager with a young boy who all but drools over her. It has nonstop action, with the typical Michael Bay style. It has a plot, convoluted as it is sometimes it’s still a plot nonetheless. The transformers turn into some really nice rides. I asked my wife why she liked it and she said she liked the constant action, the character development of Mark Wahlberg’s character, the story flowed well for her, and to be blunt, “It’s a lot less bad than the last one”. Now there’s a ringing endorsement!
For those that are wondering if this will be the last in the franchise because of the fact that it didn’t open as well as any of its predecessors, don’t be too sure. It may not have done great here, but overseas it is a total blockbuster and so I see another one on the horizon. Rumor has it that Michael Bay has said it would be his last (a statement some are hoping is true) and if it is, it will be interesting to see if someone else can pick up the mantle and run with it.
There is a scene shortly after the credits start, but none afterwards.