‘Transformers’ – everything you want in an action movie

Movie review
By: Frank Miller Special to The News Messenger
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Of all the bloated, action-heavy and mind-numbing films to bear director Michael Bay’s name, “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” is the film that best represents his abilities as a filmmaker. Bay has never been one for subtlety, plot or coherent themes but his latest film feels like it highlights how those deficiencies can be both a blessing and a curse. In a good way, “Transformers” features everything you want in an action movie. It has fantastic special effects, big explosions, tremendous 3D presentation and enough giant robot action to make your head spin. But the film is also a flashy showcase for every single flaw that Bay has in his repertoire. For instance, the film is an overlong sodden mess with barely enough plot threads to hold the film together. All you really need to know is that good robots fight bad robots and there are human lives at risk … just like the last two films. The plot only serves to move the film along to the climactic battle that takes place (inexplicably) in Chicago. To be fair, those 45 minutes of action are some of the best effects-driven spectacle that has graced the big screen in quite some time. But, by the time you get there, your brain may have already turned into oatmeal after having sat through a parade of lobotomized exposition. There is simply no reason for this film to be as long as it is. It’s nearly as long as one of the “Lord of the Rings” films, without nearly as much grace and power. Nothing in the film makes any sense and even the characters seem to have no clue as to their purpose and motivation beyond running and screaming. If the series is to continue without Bay, hopefully they can recapture some of the humanity and charm of the first film and trim the fat from this creatively sagging franchise. Frank Miller is a Sacramento writer. ---------- “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” Directed by Michael Bay Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Patrick Dempsey Rating: Two out of five stars