I've been a Transformers fan for well over two decades now, grew up with Generation 1, got caught on the recent tide of nostalgia and thoroughly enjoyed Michael Bay's first live action movie, despite the obvious differences from the franchise's first incarnation. Things change, and the movie was a blast. I looked forward to the sequel, hoping for more of the same but with a bigger scope to reflect the growing threat.
Well, more is certainly what we got with Revenge of the Fallen, there's no doubt about that. More robots, more locations, more fight sequences, improved effects. It's all up there on the screen, no doubt about that. The movie looks incredible.
Unfortunately, Michael Bay doesn't seem to know when to stop. There are simply too many Transformers on screen now to care about, and the few of them that do receive adequate screen time to get to know tend to be the more grating, comedy relief characters, while the potentially more interesting Transformers are relegated to the background.
Oh yes, the 'comedy'. There's way too much of it, and it's faaaaar too juvenile in nature. Jokes about stoned mothers, Transfomers showing their 'affection' for their new human friends, Devastator's swinging wrecking balls... I must admit the odd snigger, but felt quite ashamed with myself for it. This kind of stuff is just out of place, making it seem like giant shape-shifting robots have wandered onto the set of the latest instalment of the interminable American Pie series. And as for those twins...
A shame, because there is good stuff here. The core Transformers from the previous film remain and work well for the time they have on screen (save Bumblebee, who seems to have turned into Sam's stalker). Megatron and Starscream's relationship is expanded and works brilliantly. The human cast work well, particularly Shia LaBeouf , Josh Duhamel and John Turturro, whose comedy relief character DOES work. Soundwave is perfect as a sinister puppetmaster, keeping a close eye on things from space. And Ravage is simply brilliant.
Despite slight disappointment, I'm still looking forward to the third in the series. Just know when to hold back next time, eh Mr. Bay...?