So, I watched the new Transformers. And before you start yelling all in my face about how I'm not qualified because I'm not some massive Transformers aficionado who knows the names and space-genealogies of all 4,000 robots that explode in this movie and I'm ruining your life just by allowing Michael Bay's greatness to bounce around upon my stupid, bitchy, blasphemous rods and cones, kindly absorb the following: (1) I'm in charge here—I watch what I want. (2) What do you care? You're going to see it anyway. (3) I liked it. Calm down—I liked it.
Honestly, I have no problem with Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. It is exactly what it's supposed to be: a movie based on a line of plastic dolls, in which trucks turn into robots and vice versa and shit blows up for 150 minutes and sometimes Megan Fox's boobs do things in slow motion. Mission fucking accomplished. This might be the only film franchise for which Michael Bay is absolutely, preternaturally suited. I am not even mad.
Now. As a young child, I owned several Transformers action figures and I enjoyed their company very much (more than I liked my G.I. Joes, but not as much as I liked my He-Man with the rotating battle-scar chest plate). I definitely had Optimus Prime, and I also had something that was I think purple and turned into some sort of bug. Or a crab. Or, wait, maybe a lion. Clearly my Transformers knowledge and enthusiasm have waned in the intervening years. Therefore, nerds, since I can't tell you anything useful about Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (short review: If you think you might like it, you will), I'm hoping maybe you can help me out instead. For I have some questions!
1. As for the plot: Okay, so Megatron is mad at that other one because of the thing in the last movie, but he's in the ocean so it's cool. But then also there's the other other one—he's got the metal beard and he was around in ancient times—who's just been living out in space and wants revenge!!! Shia LaBeouf, the human, he's got a piece of that magic thingy from before ("Kaela, I think a sliver of the Cube got stuck on my shirt!"), and when he touched it, it went in his brains, and now Megatron needs his brains to help the space one with the revenge! Because Megatron's out of the ocean now! Out of the ocean and he waaaaaants braaaaaains! Is that about right? Did I miss anything important?
2. What makes some Transformers better at fighting than other ones? It seems so arbitrary! Sometimes a Transformer will punch another Transformer in the face and something akin to teeth will fly out, and then the punchee will be all fizzle-fizzle-pow-DEAD, and the puncher will go, "Damn, I'm good." But then other times, a Transformer will shoot another one right in its sensitive parts, and it'll just keep running around breaking shit. What makes a robot win a fight? They don't even have powers! It's so hard to keep track.
3. Can I get an action figure of Sam Witwicky's mom? That lady is hilarious.
4. Are you so mad at Obama right now? He totally fucks up in this movie. For some reason, when the Decepticons attack, "the president" (OBAMZ!) immediately fires the Autobots and sends them back to their hangar for a quiet sit-down. Because that's probably what we'd do if we ever were attacked by giant robots from space: send our OWN army of robots from space TO THEIR ROOMS as quickly as possible, so that Josh Duhamel and his army of tiny, squishy human man-soldiers can go head-to-head with those gigantic evil things from space who are MADE OF GUNS. Makes perfect sense, Obama. Dick.
5. Remember after the first Transformers movie, when people were all obsessed with how awkwardly racist Michael Bay was, regarding Jazz, the wisecracking "black" Autobot who died almost immediately? Don't you think it's weird that Bay decided to just forge ahead with T:ROTF? He opens the film with mud-covered, early-man, snarling black people hunting a mighty tiger and upgrades Jazz to a pair of jive-talkin', gold-tooth-havin', unbelievably annoying "black" twin-bots named Mudflap and Skids (ew). "Naw, we don't really do much readin'. Not so much," says either Mudflap or Skids (doesn't matter). Oh, Bay. You've done it again.
6. What do robots do on their off days? Like, for example, Devastator, who shows up toward the end to rip the Egyptian pyramids apart and find the great big Decepticon weapon concealed within (and by the way, human archaeologists—really never noticed that giant alien gun just kickin' it in there waiting to blow up the sun?). What does Devastator DO the other 364 days of the year? Does he sit around a human construction site, like, being seven trucks? Does he sit around in space being seven trucks? It just doesn't make sense.
7. At one point, Tyrese looks up at Optimus Prime and says, "You gotta wonder—God made us in His image. Who made him?" Uhhh... General Motors? Volvo? Who?
8. When a whole movie is just one long climax (Sting-style, you know), it's hard not to feel anticlimactic at the actual climax. That's what happens in T:ROTF. After two hours of constant destruction—really just one long sustained, indistinguishable whirl of shiny metal punctuated by explosions (lots)—the Big Finish, wherein the evil are vanquished and the good high-five (oh... spoiler?), is hardly noticeable. Does that bother you? No? Fair enough, then.