Transformers is one of those franchises that anyone who was a kid in the 80’s has fond memories of. The first couple of films have basically traded on that to be popular and to be honest, as dumb as they are, I’ve kinda enjoyed them explosions, stupid comic relief characters, no real plot but I kinda had a laugh watching them and didn’t have to think, so they work out to be enjoyable. Maybe not rewatchable but enjoyable for a couple of hours.
So here comes Dark of the Moon, the third film, which has been filmed in 3D and Michael Bay is telling us it absolutely deserves it and you need to see it that way, which is why I saw it in 2D. I went by myself and figure if friends drag me along to see it again I’ll see it in 3D then, but from the 2D version I can tell you it absolutely doesn’t need viewing in 3D, there are shots that seem to have been specifically done to look better in 3D, shots at angles that will look better composed in 3D, but over all the 2D version works fine.
Now on to the story, which is basically Sam is now out of college and hasn’t got a job, he doesn’t want one that isn’t important because after ‘saving the world twice!’ and wants to feel important again. He’s annoyed his new girlfriend is paying his way and he can’t get a decent job. And meanwhile the Autobots are off fighting terrorists or something in the middle east and so Sam doesn’t have a decent car, instead he has a beat up old Datsun he’s ‘restoring’.
While on one of their missions the Autobots discover a piece of technology from their home world being used in Chernobyl. The Russian scientists were trying to discover how to use its Energon to power their nuclear plant and it caused the disaster. Suddenly they’re attacked by Decepticons in search of the Energon themselves, or so it seems, one heads off and attacks the Ukrainian deplomat that brought the Autobots in. They’ve had a group of humans working for them in secret and have now decided to kill them and cover their tracks.
The Autobots return to the NEST facility and Optimus Prime demands to know how this technology came to be in human hands when they’d supposedly been told everything the humans knew about Cybertron and the Transformers, and is told of a secret mission included in the Apollo programme. A vessel crashed on the moon in the 60s and was the reason for the space race, they discovered Cybertronian technology and kept it quiet, and only a handful of people ever knew.
Meanwhile Sam has got a job in the mail room at a large company, when someone spots him, one of the Decepticon’s human accomplices, he jumps same in the bathroom and after explaining to him that he wants to be known as deep wang, the deep throat of the conspiracy, he hands Sam a set of documents detailing the events and what was found, and after being attacked by a Decepticon in his office Sam decides he has to get to the Autobots and tell them what’s going on, of course dragging his girlfriend with him.
So that’s the basics of the story. It’s full of the usual cliches, the usual low brow jokes and comic relief one note characters, and of course chock full of explosions and big robots fighting each other. It is after all a Michael Bay movie. So first of all what I liked. Alan Tudyk was fun, and John Malkovich being John Malkovich was good, too. There’s a couple of laughs in various places, but at over 2 and a half hours it’s too long for what basically amounts to explosions and Sam being whiny about needing a job, and being a dick about his girlfriends boss, though maybe he has reason.
Oh, and I hadn’t been paying attention to the news about the film, so I was surprised to hear Leonard Nimoy voicing Sentinel Prime.
To sum it up if you liked the previous 2 I don’t see you being put off by this one, if you hated them then you’ll hate this, pretty easy really.