Before filming commenced, internet legend has it that Michael Bay challenged McG to a ‘dick measuring contest’ – equating to Terminator Salvation versus Transformers.
While it’s hard to tell who has the biggest dick from the movies alone, Bay wins on sheer balls – quite literally at one point. Revenge Of The Fallen is bigger, badder and stupider in every way than its predecessor.
Its a fantastic ride, but one that suffers from Bay’s trademark crash-bang editing, meaning you’ll remember the set pieces, but struggle to care about the plot.
If anyone cares, it turns out that our chunky metal pals have been on Earth for a looooong time and first started showing up around 20,000BC (subtly illustrated with a cavemen vs killer robot fight). When our hero, Sam (Shia LaBeouf) accidentally gets some alien knowledge stuck in his noggin, it sets up a race around the world to find something called ‘the Matrix’ and thwart eeeeevil British robot ‘The Fallen’.
Yep, it’s a biblical allegory with added robot combat and, frankly, it’s all the better for it. Obama may want to take credit for bringing the boys home from Iraq, but it looks like most of them were needed to work on this, with masses of tanks, choppers and troops blowing the hell out of everything in sight throughout.
The film’s target audience is 15-year-old boys, and they get well and truly served with the explosive combo of sunset battles, cool cars, ultraviolence and Megan Fox‘s super-tight jeans.
Robot-wise, the big names from the first film are back, with plenty of Starscream/Megatron bitching and a completely insane opening sequence in Shanghai, with Optimus Prime duking it out with what appears to be a demented, giant unicycle. Optimus gets an upgrade here too, with glowing sword attachments that will bring tears to the eye of 30-something men everywhere.
The films biggest problem is its choppy style, which shows up every flaw in the exo-skeleton. The movie tries a little too hard to be funny, with the always-value-for-money John Turturro fighting to keep his secret Agent wannabe afloat, and far, far too much comic relief. The idea of twins who talk in hip-hop rhymes may have been amusing in a cartoon when you were eight, but here it feels like overkill.
Gripes aside, this does exactly what you expect from a Bay film. Explosions, hot girls, piles of military hardware and nary a thought for plot as it hurtles recklessly toward an epic, money-shot climactic fight outside the pyramids. We get to see every penny of the CGI budget onscreen as upwards of 40 robots collide. If there isn’t a part of you that doesn’t enjoy the site of an especially massive robot called ‘Devastator’, complete with two huge wrecking balls between its legs, punching the top off the Sphinx, I pity you.
Crazed, hyperactive and nonsensical. It’s also curiously lovable and a true multiplex movie. Roll out and see it now.
This slice of wonderment was a guest blog by Interceptor from the brilliant Slashing The Seats. Pay it a visit, please