The Age of Michael Bay
As “Transformers: The Age of Extinction” makes its way through Philippine cinemas, my Facebook newsfeed is once again abuzz with people’s gripes about the film: the convoluted plot,the endless plot holes, and the cheesy dialogues, the voyeuristic treatment of its leading lady, and the annoying characters, etc. You know, the typical complaints about a Michael Bay film. Like the man himself, I’m not surprised anymore.
What I’m surprised at is the fact that people still complain about these things and yet continue to watch his movies. Michael Bay has been consistent in having these “issues” in all his movies. A convoluted and illogical plot? Check! Car crashes and other mayhem? Check! Blatant product placement? Check! Running ladies in skimpy outfits and heels? Check! So why would he divert from this winning formula when ticket sales keep on breaking box office records?
When you decide to watch a Michael Bay film, you must know that you’re watching a visual spectacle first and foremost, that your ears will be pounded with noise, and you will feel like you’ve just been on a roller coaster or some other exhilarating carnival ride. Nothing more. Most probably you will enjoy the experience. But to expect more will only result in frustration and disappointment.
As for me, I only decided to watch Transformers 4 because of these guys:
Somebody ought to explain to Michael Bay what the word “reboot” means. Because this movie essentially told the same story. But to be fair, the story seems to make more sense that Transformers 2 & 3. The human cast has been changed however, the replacement cast failed to match the neurotic and unintentionally comic energy of Shia LeBouf (as Sam Witwicky). Well, except for Stanley Tucci (as Joshua Joyce), who for me was the most pleasant surprise of this film.
There was also an obvious effort to streamline the design of the robots; even the way they transform is about a notch slower than in the previous 2 movies. I liked it because I was able to appreciate the transitions better, since this was the main attraction of the franchise for me: cars that turn into robots and back. Yes, that includes dinosaurs of course.
Over-all, I liked this movie better than the previous 2, but still less than the first.
As one film critic put it: “Either I’m getting dumber or the “Transformers” sequels are getting more coherent.”