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_ Transformers _ Title: Transformers

 

Transformers. Definitely more than meets the eye. At first glance this seems like the most over budget, special effects laden, poster child for unbelievable films ever. And true it is all of those things. Yet there are many elements in here that elevate it to that and more. Director Michael Bay (The Island, Armageddon) takes a clever script and transforms it into a fun ride and must see film of the cinematic summer. New and old fans of the transformers, which I was neither, will love cheering on their favorites on the big screen. New comers to the world of transfiguration, which I am, will have no problem grabbing the story and running with it full force.

The film revolves around Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) who must help the newly arrived Autobots find and protect a lost article while keeping it from the hands of those nasty Decepticons. The autobots are led by Optimus Prime (voiced by Peter Cullen) and want only to restore their planet and save their people. Megatron (voiced by Hugo Weaving) on the other hand just wants to wreak havoc on all who stand in his way. Add to that a panicked government and high school kids ready to step up and do what the educated adult can never seem to accomplish and you pretty much have the plot. But again this is a very fun ride; the main reason being that it does not take itself seriously. There are comic elements that make it tongue and cheek and unlike normal space invasions you find these ET’s quite human at times. Including a sense of humor.

These movies live and die by the special effects and it is safe to say that this puppy is in prime physical condition. The Transformers do so in a huge way. The interaction between autobots and human bodies is smooth and detailed. When the film needs to be larger than life it is. What works too is that the writers did not just leave it up to the graphics gang. They fill in the plot with quirky human characters that are funny, strange and are going to hit the 16-25 demo head on. The look and feel of this film is obviously geared toward that age group. The only sad part is that the younger kids, 12 and under, who are now into transformers may be subjected to language and discussions that are in no way necessary for the plot and will make parents think twice about taking them. This could have been a film for all ages but instead cheats the younger movie goers.

Transformers is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi action violence, brief sexual humor, and language. Again it is the sexual humor and the language that parents should be aware of. If you do not want your 10 year old asking you what masturbation means or what exactly a ho is, then you might want to think twice about taking them. Granted these scenes are rare within the 144 minutes and may be lost among the action and everything else that is going on. But it is there none the less. So just know ahead of time and be the parent. That said, everyone else will find this film a fun, action packed, laugh and cheer out loud ride. It has to be seen on the big screen to be appreciated and you have to go in with an open mind. It is about aliens after all. I give it a strong 4 out of 5 disguises. Just know before you go. I’m Matt Mungle.

(matt@mungleshow.com)(07/02/07)

“Matt is a member of the North Texas Film Critics Association (NTFCA) and hosts the weekly syndicated Indie Rock Radio Show Spin 180. Plus with his wife Cindy they do a weekly radio feature, The Mungles on Movies. For additional reviews and interview clips visit the website www.mungleshow.com”

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