Oh boy, another Transformers movie with exactly the same plot as the others. Better call the airplane bathroom maintenance crew, because some shit’s about to start flying.
Transformers: The Last Knight
It’s 484 A.D. and war is raging. To defeat the saxons, King Arthur sends out his trusted advisor Merlin to forge an alliance with a secretive order of Knights in a final effort to turn the tides of battle. 1600 years later, Cade Yaeger is still hunted by law enforcement all over the world when he stumbles upon an old Transformer artifact, a key and map to Merlin’s lost staff. Allegedly the greatest weapon in the history of mankind. Pursued by the government, Decepticons, and with a new threat on the horizon, he must race around the world to connect the pieces of a puzzle, hundreds of generations in the making.
I’m going to start with a very strange sentence, so read carefully: I’ve never been so satisfied with a movie in my life! What that means is ultimately determined through the expectations I had towards it. And that, we’ll be unpacking later. Just think about that sentence for a bit. Michael Bay’s Transformers movies have never been good movies. Jeez, Michael Bay’s movies, period, have never been good. Not only that, they are also rarely entertaining. Over the top action that puts viewers to sleep, over sexualized women that are nothing more that set-dressing, bad camera work, cringeworthy scripts, and so much more. Which movie am I talking about? Take your pick. But let’s stick with The Last Knight for now and get through all of these. First up, Action. And by god it never stops. Explosions pile onto each other like a maelstrom of fire and boredom. It really shows, that Michael Bay started out as a director for television commercials. Because only someone with that background can think that blowing shit up every five fucking minutes would keep the audience’s attention. But let’s not delve deeper into that, mainly because the action sequences look exactly the same as in any other film in the series. Show me footage of some of these scenes throughout the series and even with a gun to my head I couldn’t tell you which one is which. Next, over sexualized young women. And I’ve got to praise Bay first before I punch him in the dick. While they obviously went with another conventionally beautiful, skinny, white woman with long hair, they surprisingly enough did not introduce her through her behind dangling in front of the camera. Her introduction paints her as an intelligent and independent person and even though she wears a tight fitting dress, it could have been a lot worse (a sentence we’ll return to at some point). Why is it then (punch in the dick time), that her role in the story boils down to „We need you to find something very dangerous and cool because you’re the only one that can wield it. Well you don’t actually get to wield it because we take it away from you after a few minutes“. Her only job in this film after that, is to agree that the hero of the story may take her out for dinner in the end. Fuck that.
Bad camerawork and every other mistake that’s been made in regards to this film boil down to the impression, that Bay as a director thinks, that the audience needs to be bombarded with moving pictures, flashing lights and the general feeling of „shit happening“ to not lose interest. But give your audience some credit for fuck’s sake. You need a break once in a while or your brain shuts down to prevent further damage. Which it then still might do, because that doesn’t fix the horrendous writing in this piece of shit. Let’s take a quick look at some other high octane action flicks with major use of special effects and I’ll tell you what they do better. Wonder Woman, very recently, used a dancing scene to flesh out its characters, dialing down the effects and letting two people talk in a very natural way. BAM, brilliant scene and a breather for the audience. 2014’s Godzilla used a scene in the midst of battle to give the viewers a break, when a group of soldiers skydives towards San Francisco with nothing but red flares and eyre tunes in the background as they fall towards Godzilla’s fight with the M.U.T.O. There was an atmospheric silence and dread in that scene, certainly heavy, but it provided a safe haven before the film got into its final act.
There’s basically just one positive aspect I can think of, and that is Anthony Hopkins. Who did an incredible job in squeezing everything he could out of this dreadful script. But even with that, the film just can’t decide on a consistent tone.
At the beginning I said, I’ve never been more satisfied with a film in my life. I expected nothing from this and have gotten exactly that. A bland run of the mill action flick with no memorable characters or plot-lines in a series that can only be improved by being strangled to death by its own stupidity.
There’s only one person to blame, it’s the guy who taught Michael Bay that „showing not telling“ is the golden rule of film-making while forgetting to add „within reason“. So yeah, fuck that guy. At least it looks like it’s over now.
Beitragsbild: Kevin Wendlandt
Bilder: Paramount Pictures