Now that I've gotten over the melodrama, let's talk about why this movie sucked.
My feelings about TF2 were pretty much summed up in my initial tweet after the viewing.
"That was simultaneously one of the best and one of the worst movies I've ever seen."I did enjoy parts of the movie. Whenever Optimus Prime started kicking ass, I was on the edge of my seat like everyone else. This movie does deliver on the overabundance of giant robot mayhem that was sorely missing from the first movie. But instead of canceling out the horrible schlock that filled in the rest of this movie, it somehow served to make me revile it even more. Because the simple fact is, if anyone gave a shit about this being a good movie, it could've been amazing.
Instead, what was clear to me is that no one was trying to make a good movie. They were trying to make a movie that would make as much money as possible. And the best way to do that is to make a movie that no one will dislike. That's a pretty important distinction and it's the real reason I would be pretty nervous if I ever get the chance to make movies with Hollywood types. You see my logic goes something like this:
If you make the best movie possible with the best talent you can get, then everyone will like it and it'll make a ton of money.I know, sounds reasonable right? But here's how the logic actually works in Hollywood when it comes to Summer Blockbusters:
If we get people to turn off their brains and enjoy themselves for a few hours they'll thank us for giving them a diversion. All we have to do is follow the tried and true formulas, put some big spectacles in it and throw in some hot stars. Everyone will think it's awesome because they can't remember anything that they disliked about it!And Transformers 2 delivers on that idea better than any movie in recent memory. This movie contains more overdone cliches and hackneyed plot devices than anything in my darkest nightmares. And furthermore, it's headlined by 2 of the worst, most throwaway "movie stars" to ever demand multi-million dollar paychecks in exchange for pretending to be likable.
Let's take a walk through this train wreck shall we?
Sam (Shia LeBeouff) and Mikaela (Megan Fox) are still together. Because only a harrowing adventure featuring giant robot aliens could make Megan Fox forget that she is way out of LeBeouff's league. Yep, you've gotta be the savior of mankind to have a shot with this chick. The camera spends so much time on closeups of her cleavage that I had flashbacks of nursing.
Sam's mom is a cutout caricature of the zany mom who goes through split-second mood swings with "hilarious" results. "Oh boo hoo, my wittle boy is off to college." * switch * "I don't care of they are giant space robots, tell them to stop blowing up my flower garden" And that's before she innocently inhales an entire bag of weed-laced brownies. Then things really get "fun." Don't even get me started on the stupid, over-sexed, pseudo-geek roommate, or the fact that even John Turturro buys into this stupid sidekick nonsense. In the late 80's early 90's, this routine would've been pure gold. As it is, it made me pray for Megan Fox to show up again. At least she's nice to look at and doesn't talk half as much.
The super macho marines return in this installment to continue shooting metal aliens with regular bullets like it has any effect whatsoever. At least we didn't have to hear more about Tyrese's left butt cheek. And they're joined by the uptight bureaucrat that knows nothing about what's happening but doesn't let that stop him from making terrible decisions. But what's even more mind-blowing is that Bay and the writers of this film would have us believe that America's leaders are arrogant enough to speak for the entire world! "The President may determine that you're a threat to our national security. And you would then be asked to leave our planet." Hey buddy, can we put it to a democratic vote on whether we'd like to keep the benevolent aliens who have saved our asses once already? As a matter of fact, fuck off and let Optimus and the crew stay in Switzerland or something. Good grief.
The Autobots in the first movie were bland caricatures at best and blatant stereotypes at worst ("What's crackin' little bitches?" Yes, that actually happened) And because we let them get away with that least time, those lovable guys are replaced by the worst robotic minstrel show since, well... ever. Introducing Skids and Mudflap. Along with black stereotypical accents ("Who you talkin' to fool?"), these two bumbling knuckleheads come with gold teeth and big ears to boot (remember they can change their shape at will, they CHOSE to look like this). And they top it off by claiming proudly that they "don't do too much reading." And to add insult to injury, they are extremely incompetent and the most ineffectual at protecting the humans in the movie. Even though that's all they are supposed to do. Even Bumblebee smacks them around and he has always been the runt of the group.
I honestly don't really care about the so-called racism these characters represent. White people won't stop doing this until we stop showing them that we like it (I'm looking at you Tyler Perry). It bothers me more that they chose to go with outdated stereotypes. At least stay current! I can't remember the last time I heard a black person say "I'mma bust a cap in yo ass." Get T.I. to do the voices or something. Oh wait, he's in prison for doing something monumentally stupid. Get Lil Wayne then. At least let him advise on the current state of black slang before making your $200 million movie.
I would comment on the inane plot of this movie. But honestly, I don't even remember it. Apparently there's this old Deceptacon who's more badass than Megatron and the only person who can stop him is Optimus Prime. World hangs in the balance, yada yada yada. I would've been perfectly fine with it except for the fact that they spent waaaay to much time talking about it. This movie was 2 and half hours long. You can cram in all the action, crude humor, slow motion boob shots and sad, over-dramatic death scenes you want. You're still only gonna end up with an hour and a half. And the rest of it is spent explaining in great detail why Sam has been chosen to revive Optimus Prime and save the world. Only it's the worst excuse for a coherent plot you can imagine.
- Optimus Prime is a descendant of the ancient Primes who once ruled their entire race. How do giant robots have kids? How come there's only one left? Meh, whatever.
- One of the pyramids in Egypt contains an ancient alien death machine. How did the decades of study by scientists miss this fun factoid? Meh, whatever.
- There is a special key that activates the machine and it was sealed away long ago. Why seal it? Why not destroy it and the machine? Meh, whatever.
- If the Autobots are the good guys and knew about all this, how come they didn't give us a heads up? That's an easy one. Cause then there wouldn't be a sequel! Oh, and because they smartly crammed all of their historical knowledge in the magic cube that was destroyed in the first movie. Nice move Sherlock.