Friday, June 27, 2014
Movie Review - Transformers: Age of Extinction
I have always been a fan of the Transformers movies: they do "big" well, and they're always entertaining. For a movie that's supposed to be the first true summer blockbuster, however, Transformers: Age of Extinction felt overly long and more bloated than the previous three in the series, and I was not as entertained by it as I thought I would be.
Cade Yeager (Mark Wahlberg) and his daughter Tessa (Nicola Peltz) live a mostly quiet life in Texas, with him (trying to) work as an inventor. One day, he buys an old truck that ends up being an Autobot (Optimus Prime, to be precise), and the CIA - or some bad people from the CIA, anyways - invade and blow up the Yeagers' house. Tessa's professional driver boyfriend, Shane (Jack Reynor), happens to be on the scene, and before they know it, they're on the run from the government and whomever else is chasing them, with Optimus; their travels will take them to Chicago and eventually China, where a war between the Decepticons and the humans is looming.
The beginning of this movie was good. Wahlberg has replaced Shia LaBeouf in the series, and I did like seeing him on-screen. However, the dialogue in this film starts to get worse and worse throughout; Wahlberg's character calls Shane "Lucky Charms" since he's from Ireland, and the girl playing his daughter looked more like his girlfriend, even though in real life she's 19 (in the film, she was 17 and he was 35). One of the funniest characters in the movie, a family friend played by T.J. Miller, exits sooner than later, and we're left with Wahlberg, Reynor, and Peltz, a ragtag team who may look pretty but have idiotic things to say (not their faults, but still).
Maybe see this film. Odds are, whatever I say in this review are not going to persuade or dissuade you from seeing it, especially if you're a Transformers fan, but I was disappointed with the movie. Even Stanley Tucci, who shows up later in the film, can't really save it. The end definitely leaves it open to another sequel, but I won't be seeing the next installment in the series, especially if the movies keep clocking in at 2.5+ hours. I will say that it was cool to see Detroit (as China/Chinatown) on screen, and if you look closely you can see the GM building and the Fisher building. By about midway through the movie, I felt like my time was being wasted - the Autobot/Decepticon fights were cool, but when you watch the same thing over and over, it starts to become more tedious than a novelty.
Transformers: Age of Extinction is in theaters today, June 27th, and is rated PG-13 with a runtime of about 160 minutes. 2.5 stars out of 5.