Transformers 4 is here and after all the promise of a more serious story, new cast and a different direction has it lived up to the hype surrounding it? Unfortunately not, no.
If you loved previous instalments of this franchise then you will probably be satisfied with Michael Bay’s efforts to make your eyes bleed this time around. But for the rest of us, nothing is really different after all.
On the plus side you now have Mark Wahlberg as your main lead; on the negative side you have him portraying Cade Yeager, a less than successful inventor who is struggling to raise his teenage daughter on a farm in the middle of Texas while stealing electricity from his neighbour.
This is the kind of background story and character I would expect from a pro-wrestler rather than your main character in a franchise which is now supposed to have taken a more serious direction.
This film is nearly identical in action to previous films and it manages to tick off an entire checklist built from the previous versions:
- Slow-mo running away from explosions which looks more like fireworks
- One city in particular is mostly destroyed
- Camera angles looking up at people’s crotches as they talk
- Gratuitous shots of the female lead’s backside in skimpy jean shorts
- Long running time (could have easily shaved an hour off the film)
- Appalling product placement without any subtlety
- Story which makes little to no sense
The film attempts to create a serious moment quite early on but fails miserably as it doesn’t take long for the usual action and comedy to kick in. Plus with the extra-long running time you will have probably forgotten it ever happened by the time the final battle takes place.
One element of the film which I thought was quite welcoming was the inclusion of Stanley Tucci who, by the third act, is delivering one liners in an effort to just go with the ridiculousness of the entire film. His moments break up some of the action and are quite funny if you haven’t walked out by this point or fallen asleep.
Transformers: Age of Extinction is exactly what you would expect and if you go in to it trying to take any part of this film seriously then you will be left frustrated and exhausted. The day after you have watched it you’ll have forgotten what the plot was and why you watched it.
But if you’re anything like me, you might have one lingering question hanging over your head afterwards; when will Mark Wahlberg need to reload that alien rifle he is carrying?
Oh and they left it open for a fifth film, yay!