Transformers: Dark of the Moon (and oh how that title screams for another noun, like SIDE) has raked in $97.4 million dollars, making it the top-grossing opening weekend in film this year. Some fans are blowing up the ‘net, raving about the awesome graphics and 3D shooting techniques. However, critics and a boatload of dismayed fans are crying foul and saying it amounts to a steaming pile of celluloid poo. Here are the highlights.
The Movie in General
Roger Ebert bashed the film, describing it as “a visually-ugly film with an incoherent plot, wooden characters, and inane dialog.” On this point, he is somewhat right. Sure, watching Transformers fight and blow stuff up is fun. I’m sure it was really hard to shoot. It doesn’t make it interesting or justify sitting in a sticky chair for 155 minutes.
The Acting = Painful
Okay, so Shia LeBeouf is never going to be mistaken for Christian Bale. Heck, he won’t even be mistaken for Keanu Reeves. Pretty, over-blown, and boasting a ho-hum résumé with far too many ‘I’ve never heard of it’ projects listed, director Michael Bay continues to hand this guy the lead role for some inexplicable reason. Film critic James Berardinelli says Shia “has sunk to greater levels of incompetence here. It’s hard to call his posturing and screaming ‘acting.'”
As for the model-turned-actress Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, she apparently didn’t get the memo that this is not a ‘be pretty’ job. Acting is a serious vocation that takes some people years to perfect (the aforementioned Keanu Reeves being a good example of someone who took awhile to grasp acting competency). Sure, some people are simply born with it. Rosie, sadly, was not. Lou Lumenick said it best when he said Rosie’s “‘acting’ makes… Megan Fox look like Meryl Streep in comparison.”
Personally, I found the live-action portions of the movie to be the worst. The best part? The end. When actors and actresses are being upstaged by CGI-rendered machines, something is far wrong. While the box office returns are indeed impressive, I would encourage everyone to forgo the $17 ticket at the local theater and watch it once it hits the $5 bin at Wal-Mart. Better yet, rent it for a dollar out of the Red Box. It won’t be long, trust me.