After hearing only snippets of a couple of reviews on Transformers, and seeing its average rating on Yahoo! as 2.5 stars, I was guarded in my approach to the theater yesterday.
Boy, was that uncalled for. Let me sum up: Transformers is the best movie I’ve seen all year. Now, I admit, I haven’t seen a lot of movies this year, but I’m putting it ahead of Pirates of the Caribbean 3, Spider-Man 3, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, and Oceans 13 (all of which I liked a lot, except Spider-Man 3, which was… meh).
Note to parents: This movie is rated PG-13 for a reason. This is not your father’s Transformers movie. Do not bring small children! I am writing this specifically to the couple who brought no fewer than three kids under the age of 6 to the theater yesterday. Your parenting license should be revoked, idiots.
The acting was good, the direction was good, the special effects were amazing, if a bit heavy-handed. The one complaint I have about the fight scenes was that, like in the Transporter and Daredevil, there were too many shots where the camera was about 4″ away from the action, and all you could see was a blur of motion. That’s not fun to watch, but the transformations were awesome.
Also, hearing Peter Cullen reprise his role as Optimus Prime was simply delightful, as delightful as seeing Optimus NOT be a fire truck, as he was rumored to be last year.
I’m not sure why Bumblebee had to be a Camaro (okay, I am sure, given that the apparent top sponsors of the movie were eBay, General Motors, Apple Computer, and Nokia), and think he would have been just fine if they’d kept him as a VW bug, but I got over that.
Another minor gripe was that Devastator seemed under-powered, and did not appear to be a composite of multiple Constructacons. Again, I got over it, but I was disappointed that he only lasted a single fight scene.
Overall, I’m giving Transformers two thumbs way up, and can’t wait to see it again this weekend!