Transformers: Dark Of the Moon (2011) by The Critical Movie Critics

Movie Review: Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)


After a fine first effort in the action/adventure department with “Transformers,” the series ran into major writer’s block (as well as a writer’s strike) with the horrid second installment, “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.” And while still not up to the inaugural’s standard, the newest release, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, is a decent addition and captures — somewhat — that movie’s intense action scenes, as well as much of the humor.

It actually could have been even better, believe it or not, if not for the female lead. Rosie Huntington-Whiteley (I never thought I would miss the acting talents of Megan Fox), is quite literally nothing but eye candy in high heels.

After the confusion of the end of part two, with no one knowing what was going on and which robot was fighting which, Transformers: Dark of the Moon begins with the defeated Decepticons in exile while the Autobots are involved in an uneasy co-operation with their human hosts. Acting as international peacekeepers, they are soon called upon to answer a decades-old rumor about beings on the Moon, as well as other alien conspiracies.

When Optimus Prime (voice of Peter Cullen) travels to the lunar surface to bring back his former leader, Sentinel Prime (Leonard Nimoy), with several “space bridge” pillars, a plan is fomented that may bring the robots back to the brink of war again — with the measly humans once again caught in the middle. Meanwhile, Sam (Shia LaBeouf) is trying to secure a low-level entry position in a company run by the wacky John Malkovich (this despite dating an international supermodel) and is no longer involved with his former robotic pals.

Transformers: Dark Of the Moon (2011) by The Critical Movie Critics

The new sexy couple

At this firm, he runs into the spaced-out Jerry Wang (Ken Jeong, “The Hangover Part II“) and learns of the goings-on over at the dark side of the Moon. Also in place is former CIA agent Seymour Simmons (John Turturro, “Cars 2“), and current Central Intelligence deputy director, Mearing (Frances McDormand). When the Primes begin to fight amongst themselves, exiled Megatron (voice of Hugo Weaving) makes its long awaited appearance.

Battle sequences are appropriately loud and violent in Transformers: Dark of the Moon, while the addition of blood pouring from the gaping wounds of the machines will be a welcome sight for most 14-year-old boys in the audience. The decibels are still there from part two, but the distractions have been kept to a minimum.

Director Michael Bay, who learned the art of subtly and nuance on the set of “Pearl Harbor” also wisely puts back much of the comedic touch that made the original so successful. Sure, Sam’s dopey parents are still here (thankfully, for just a few scenes), but there are some real laughs in this version. Malkovich, Jeong, Turturro and Alan Tudyk are the one’s responsible for most of the giggles.

As far as the CGI work, it’s something we have come to expect from this franchise, but the work is seamless in this film, as well; and with apocalyptic conflicts going on — with half of the city of Chicago destroyed — the graphics department acquitted themselves nicely. Overall, Transformers: Dark of the Moon does what it sets out to do, entertain the masses and rake in millions at the box office.

It’s not Shakespeare, but I did not expect it to be. It’s a two-plus hour ride that will leave one mentally unstimulated but a bit physically exhausted. And during the long hot days of summer, that’s not an entirely bad thing.

Critical Movie Critic Rating:
4 Star Rating: Good

4

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The Critical Movie Critics

I have been a movie fan for most of my life and a film critic since 1986 (my first published review was for "Platoon"). Since that time I have written for several news and entertainment publications in California, Utah and Idaho. Big fan of the Academy Awards - but wish it would go back to the five-minute dinner it was in May, 1929. A former member of the San Diego Film Critics Society and current co-host of "The Movie Guys," each Sunday afternoon on KOGO AM 600 in San Diego with Kevin Finnerty.


'Movie Review: Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)' have 10 comments

  1. The Critical Movie Critics

    June 29, 2011 @ 9:01 am Sal

    “Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is quite literally nothing but eye candy in high heels.”

    Oh and what beautiful eye candy she is! :)

  2. The Critical Movie Critics

    June 29, 2011 @ 9:30 am Samsonite

    I had high expectations for this movie, hoping for an improved plot and better character development. Sadly, Bay has given another nauseatingly Bay flick.

    5 stars out of 5 for intense, mind blowing effects. .5 star out of 5 for the rest.

  3. The Critical Movie Critics

    June 29, 2011 @ 11:46 am Lee K.

    Dark of the Moon is one helluva great ride from beginning to end. I think it is the best of the franchise by a country mile.

  4. The Critical Movie Critics

    June 29, 2011 @ 7:44 pm Hyena

    Words cant describe how terrible this movie is. No one and I mean no one in their right mind could have found any redeeming qualities in this overpriced overhyped trash. That means you Lee K. and Greg are both drunk or crazy or both.

  5. The Critical Movie Critics

    June 30, 2011 @ 8:52 pm Mariusz Zubrowski

    I wholeheartedly agree with Hyena.

  6. The Critical Movie Critics

    June 30, 2011 @ 9:29 pm General Disdain

    I’m more determined than ever to see this now.

  7. The Critical Movie Critics

    July 2, 2011 @ 5:34 am Plumber

    Transformers 3 is just an OK movie.

  8. The Critical Movie Critics

    July 3, 2011 @ 9:22 am KIKI

    Michael Bay makes total crap but makes it look good. He’s like the Ron Popeil of the movie industry.

  9. The Critical Movie Critics

    July 4, 2011 @ 12:45 pm Julian

    Rosie Huntington-Whiteley probably wasn’t the homerun Bay was looking for but the real acting travesty came from Patrick Dempsey. He came off more cartoony than Gene Hackman in the Superman series. What the hell was he thinking?

  10. The Critical Movie Critics

    July 27, 2011 @ 2:59 am Rollie

    One of the worst movies I’ve ever seen.

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