One of the most anticipated movies of the year, Transformers 3 premiered last night. As for every big event across the nation, Campus Socialite was there. Went, saw, and fucking loved it. Transformers 3 made the mediocre Transformers 2 looked like it never happened, and truly revived a series that could have been dead in the water with another flop. So what made Transformers 3 so good? Check out the Top 5 reasons after the jump.
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley > Megan Fox
Since she is so damn hot, sometimes it’s hard to actually realize just how bad of an actress Megan Fox is. Although her qualms with director Michael Bay and the way he objectified the actress on set have become gossip worthy news stories over the years, something that is rarely touched on is just how bad she is in these otherwise well acted films. Everyone plays their part well, has the comic relief down, and can believably run from these huge metal monsters. She can’t.
You can’t put a number value on it or anything but T1 and T2 would have probably been about one grade better (B to an A, C to a B) had ANY OTHER ACTRESS in the world been selected to play her role. This is demonstrated when super model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, who really has little acting experience, steps in as Shia Labeouf’s (Sam’s) new girlfriend and just by being OKAY makes the movie 100x more enjoyable.
You don’t realize how often in the past two films, Megan Fox’s one-dimensional facial expressions, and often “lost” feel to her performance, ruins what could otherwise be a great moment. Try it, play the MFSIT1 Drinking Game! The Megan Fox Sucked In Transformers 1 Drinking Game! Every time she RUINS a moment, drink. Note: Do NOT play this game with T1 and T2 back to back as you will die of alcohol poisoning.
New Additions All Work
Unlike Transformers 2, where the Mark Sanchez looking buddy who follows our crew around for the whole movie does nothing for the film, (this part was meant to be played by Jonah Hill, and it might have actually been worthwhile had this been the case) every single character added to the gang in this film held their own and somehow added to an already clustered cast of characters.
John Malkovich is perfect as Sam’s new boss, as are most of the bit parts associated with the job search that Shia Labeouf carries us through during the first 1/ 3 of the film. Francis McDormand takes over the John Tuttoro role from Transformers and acts as the up-tight CIA boss, who of course, refuses to give Sam the world saving respect he deserves. Patrick Dempsey uses the sexuality that ooozes out of the Grey’s Anatomy star to come off as a pompous, rich bastard who Sam is forced to share his girlfriend with (she’s his assistant) and the chemistry between Shia, Rosey, and Patrick provides an interesting love triangle element to a sub plot that is one of the most human in the trilogy.
Even the new Transformers are an upgrade from the ones introduced in the second film. Returning Transformers like Megatron somehow even manage to re-invent themselves, just by adding a creepy drifter’s cloth that covers part of his dismembered face.
Although it’s not Avatar, and it wasn’t shot in a way where every single moment has layers and layers of 3D film work, Transformers 3 is a movie that benefits from the biggest and the best form of presentation. Some people complain about 3D making things blurry, but this doesn’t hurt a movie like this. Even though these robots look real, sometimes TOO much clarity can reveal the imperfections in the computer animation (of which there are very few). Have you tried to watch Spiderman on an HD TV lately? It’s embarrassing.
The 3D element to Transformers 3 makes it look even more realistic. Your brain is going through such a roller coaster ride of visuals that it doesn’t have time to stop and break down whether something was flawlessly executed. One of the major complaints about the second Transformers film was you couldn’t really see or make out WHAT was going on in these huge battles. Transformers 3 cleans it up and makes things a lot more distinguishable.
The battle scenes and chases in this film are Michael Bay at his finest and he manages to use the 3D element to enhance them, without plainly sticking to cliché 3D moments like tossing a butcher knife towards the screen and watching it slowly rotate towards our popcorn-stuffed faces. Bay manages to use the 3D in a way that adds to the film in key moments and doesn’t take away from it when it should be set aside. Up until this point it has really been Avatar and maybe the Pixar movies, and then everything else when it comes to 3D. Well add Transformers 3 to the short list of films that BENEFIT from being in 3D and aren’t just using it as a way to get an extra $5 out of you for a movie ticket.
Transformers 3 is NOT Transformers 2
Transformers 2 was SO BAD that it makes you forget how good Transformers was and how fun the combination of A+ Action, Good Casting, and Comic Relief can be. If you didn’t even like Transformers, then stop reading this review right now. If you hated the original than you are definitely going to hate Transformers 2 and you will most likely not be pleased with the third one either.
No, this is not the Dark Knight of special effects driven robot porn, meant to inspire audience members that had previously been turned off by the genre. BUT, if the franchise did impress you the first time out, Transformers 3 manages to deliver in several areas where Transformers 2 let you down.
Transformers 2 got stale because it did not introduce many new characters. Transformers 3 has tons of new characters and they are all great. Transformers 2’s one new character was the annoying best friend, played by an actor who, correct me if I am wrong, hasn’t been seen since. Michael Bay probably killed him.
The scenes in Transformers 2 involving the robots were hard to make out and the climax takes place in a desert, which also served as the setting for a major scene in the first movie as well. STALE. Transformers 3 has a Battle of LA look to it for the last 1/3 of the film as Chicago is turned into an absolutely war-zone. Because Transformers 2 was so bad, you forget how great some of the moving parts of this franchise can really be. Great cast, great director, and great special effects; it should be all you need. With Transformers 3, it is all you need.
It’s The Funniest Movie Of The Year
Thankfully Transformers 3 is NOT Transformers 2, but Transformers 3 MIGHT be Hangover 2. These movies are sold on their half a billion dollar budgets, action figure nostalgia and stunning visuals. Transformers 3, nor any of the other Transformers films, are marketed as comedies. They would be stupid to, because they should not be judged as such, however the bookend installments of this trilogy are just as funny as most comedies that are released each year.
The comic relief in these movies, as in other Michael Bay movies like Bad Boys 2, is used to divert you from the otherwise serious storyline. In Transformers, it also humanizes characters that will spend a great deal of the movie talking to computer animated robots, forcing you to suspend disbelief, something you don’t always feel like doing.
While the complex premise of the movie is being laid out for us and we are introduced to the elaborate plotline of how the USA’s trip to the moon was just a cover up for a Transformer treasure hunt, Bay cuts between these scenes with hilarious moments with Sam and his parents, his girlfriend, her boss, and his new job. This stuff is just as funny as anything in any comedy this year, INCLUDING Hangover 2.
Without ruining the surprise, there is even one set of scenes in the movie that is straight out of The Hangover, which is carried entirely by a comedy main-stay making a cameo. The last forty-five minutes of this movie is a long, drawn out battle between humans and robots and robots and robots that seems to be the climax of the entire trilogy. Once this battle starts, there are maybe one or two more one-liners in the film but for the most part, it’s down to the business. And brutal business it is.
Sometimes it is hard not to let the 9/11 imagery resonate as our heroes are flung from skyscrapers in the middle of a battle filled Chi-town. If you stop to think about all the people literally murdered on screen in the last battle of this movie, it’s actually kind of scary. That being said, the first 2/3 of Transformers 3 have approximately one legitimate laugh every five minutes, coming from a variety of sources and mapped out perfectly to lend a light-hearted moment to every serious chunk of time on screen.
BONUS REASON: Shia Labeouf
Shia Labeouf does not get a fair shake from the movie snobs. It seems like he ONLY does HUGE movies with big expectations, so it makes sense that his acting constantly be put under a microscope. But the kid can act. And he possesses a skill that few actors his age have. He can carry a movie like this and in T3 he really does. From the hilarious moment Sam meets the president at the beginning of this movie to the legitimate screams of terror spew from Sam’s mouth when he’s hurled from a flying autobot during a car chase, Shia has all the tools to make every moment that involves his character work. As corny as it sounds, in a film filled with one of a kind machines that can do amazing things and change the world, Shia Labeouf is who holds the key to saving these films and just like he did with the original, with T3, Shia Labeouf saves the day again!