Thursday, July 5, 2007

Become Transformed!

My car, a 2005 Toyota Corolla named Valentino, is a loser. I recently came out of the theater and whispered into the right rear view mirror, “It’s okay. I know all about the autobots. You can transform whenever you want.” And nothing happened. Sadly. So, my car is a giant non-transforming loser and reality blows.

I wasn’t sure how to review such a large-sweeping movie, such as Michael Bay’s “Transformers,” because I am easily seduced by an imaginative idea and phenomenal visual effects. I had to read a few other reviews to get my footing and wait for the chill of adrenaline to pass so I could sort out my thoughts.

“Transformers” is this generation’s “Honey, I Shrunk The Kids”—a film that is the first of its kind and an explosion-laden standard for others to follow. The CGI’d autobot action is such a thing to behold, and it allows other aspects of the film, like plot, to fall by the wayside. But it still sucks you into the story’s action and into a reality where you truly believe that there may be a homicidal alien robot in your cell phone.

While I am very much a fan of well-told, emotionally powerful stories, I don’t think I minded this one time. Because, um…visual effects! And Shia LaBeouf! And Josh Duhamel! And Tyrese! And Optimus Prime, who’s voice sounds exactly the same as it did in the 80s! (It is the same dude. Really!)

The movie is about Sam Witwicky, played by the amazing Shia LaBeouf. He is the great great grandson of an explorer that discovered Megatron and the All Spark. Sam has the glasses that have the location of both imbedded in the lenses. A rusted out yellow Camaro is immediately drawn to him. The car later turns out to be Bumblebee, a mute Transformer with very bad luck. The movie has three different but brittle plots that all orbit around the same sun until they are eclipsed into the final Climax of Action.

“Transformers” is a summer movie that knows it’s a blockbuster, and tries to entertain with silly jokes that are funny the first time, but will turn irksome after multiple viewings (there’s a whole scene with Bernie Mac and his “Mammy” that is just a waste of time and very unfunny). LaBeouf is over-the-top as a teenager outcast just wanting a ride to impress Mikaela (played by the rather stoic Megan Fox), a porn star-in-training, in his history class. The director should have reigned in the young actor, but he peddles his passion for the Autobots better that Bobby Boliva can sell cars. He was the life of the movie, and I loved see him adlibbing and back-talking to Optimus Prime. (Sidenote: I’ve had my eye on him since I stumbled across a very nutty, quirky Disney show called ‘Even Stevens.’ I remember being amazing at how talented this strange little kid was. That little kid has gone up to be the Transformers dude, and Indiana Jones’ son). He and Justin Long from “Live Free or Die Hard” should start a new cool club, because they are re-defining cool.

The action is probably the best action sequences I’ve seen in my entire life (Sorry, all the winners of the Excellence in Ass Kickin’ Awards. They’ve all been given to the Trans Crew. Megatron made me do it!). I knew it is CGI mixed with live action and even motion capture, but I didn’t know how it was even attempted. At some points in the final battle scene, it seemed like too much to absorb all at once, which could be how battle is. It was chaotic and confusing and messy and scary! It feels like a roller coaster ride that loops around skyscrapers and hoops of fire, but I loved every minute of it.

All in all, everyone should see ‘Transformers’ on the big screen. I’m a girl and I loved it. I went with my mom and she loved it. You can’t not love the action.
For now, I’m going to go back to hating my Corolla and wishing it was a kick ass Autobot so it would at least drive me to work in the morning.


Anonymous said...

update this damn thing, would you woman!

K said...

Too busy finishing my novel, little girl!