Experience Breeds... Excellence?

Discussion in 'Transformers Movie Discussion' started by Nachtsider, Jul 8, 2011.

  1. Nachtsider

    Nachtsider Banned

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    A number of users have pointed out that poor writing remains the Movie-verse's greatest failing. Some have been more specific, stating that the writers' poor understanding of the source material is the root cause of most that is wrong with the Movie-verse.

    Do you agree with this statement? Would you rather have had someone with profound experience with TF lore pen the Movies (someone like Bob Budiansky, Simon Furman, Nick Roche, Bob Forward or Marty Isenberg, for instance), or at least be on hand as a creative consultant?

    Personally, I feel that such a move should have been made on day one. Quite frankly, I'm surprised (nay, shocked) that no such decision appears to have been so much as considered where the live-action films are concerned. I believe that the creative teams we've had to date lacked a firm grasp of TF fiction (and perhaps even a respect for it), which showed very tellingly in the final product. If we had someone like, say, Furman on board, I think we would have gotten far superior material, which would have pleased both fans and laypeople.

    I'd love to hear your thoughts.
     
  2. Megabattimus

    Megabattimus Reborn Comics Fan

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    Yes. It works for Marvel and their movies, I don't see why it can't work for Transformers.
     
  3. Starscreamownz

    Starscreamownz Air Commander

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    It's not the writers its the motivation. Orci and Kurtzman are the guys steering TF: P. I think they just didn't try as hard with their writing for the movies.

    As apposed to Kruger who actually wanted to do it right like with his suggestion of Starscream subtly calling Megatron a coward at the end of ROTF.
     
  4. Yggdrasil

    Yggdrasil Banned

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    The main problem is Michael Bay. He didn't like Transformers and I think that he still doesn't like them. He didn't want to the movie in the first place.

    He can create a kick-ass action scene but that's it! If someone else was at the helm of the boat that was in charge of characters and plot and Bay in charge of action it would have been insanly awesome. Sadly Bay can't do both.
     
  5. Nachtsider

    Nachtsider Banned

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    I feel that Orci and Kurtzman's work on TFP - a sight better than what they came up with in 2007 and 2009, to my eyes at least - is the result of them taking a step or two away, evaluating their faults, possibly delving into the source material a little deeper and adjusting things accordingly before diving back in. If true, it would only buttress my point that experience breeds excellence.

    As for Kruger, I think that whatever good he injected into ROTF might have gone to his head. DOTM definitely shows sloppy work in the writing department.
     
  6. Nachtsider

    Nachtsider Banned

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    If only he could, eh? Furman plotting and Bay directing might be a creative partnership made in Heaven.

    Quite a few people think that Bay cares nothing for the franchise, beyond loving it for being a cash cow. Frankly, I've seen nothing to disprove them.
     
  7. Jingoku

    Jingoku Well-Known Member

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    It has less to do with lack of knowledge about of the lore, and more with the lack of writing a coherent plot and narrative.
     
  8. Nachtsider

    Nachtsider Banned

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    It's a mixture of the two, says I. But the latter is probably the greater concern.
     
  9. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot The Strongest.

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    I think the reason it wasn't considered to begin with is because it was a matter of pragmatism. Budiansky, Furman... All brilliant guys, brilliant comic writers, but with no experience in banging out a condensed, tuned in movie script that lends itself to blockbusting. Orci and Kurtzman were kind of the fresh new faces of screenwriting and were hungry for a chance like Transformers, and they had enough understanding of the material to work with.

    Movie writing as applied to blockbusters usually employs a number of conventions or gimmicks, and Transformers did that. A lot of what Orci and Kurtzman did was an effort to cut down on the intrigue and complexity and winnow down a story that highlighted the core elements of the intellectual property without losing the general audience's attention. I think this actually was necessary. Could they have done it with more clarity and faithfulness to the source material? Probably, but what we got is what we got, and on a purely practical level, it worked like gangbusters.

    What may have really been better would be a collaboration between a proven screenwriter and a guy like Furman. The screenwriter could reign in Furman's knowledge of the mythos and sort of chisel a condensed, accessible, tight script out of it.
     
  10. Nachtsider

    Nachtsider Banned

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    I'm looking at some of Furman's IDW work at the moment. EJ Su's interpretations of his scripts led to some very cinematic on-page moments, which I think could be realized just as well in celluloid form as they would in pen and ink. Also, story events unfolded at a pace no different than that of your average film, and dialog was perfectly reasonable. In short, I feel that comic scripts, scribed by comic writers, can make completely viable movie scripts. Furman's penchant for overarching plots could even encourage multi-film sagas of epic proportions. Very financially viable, if you ask me.

    Cutting down on the intrigue and complexity, I feel, left us with something leaning towards the vapid side. One should not underestimate the audience's capability to comprehend an intricate plot. I won't deny that the approach they used really reeled in the dough, but still...

    You mean like a Marvel method thing, with Furman providing the essentials and someone else plotting and pacing out the rest? I think I could be fine with that, as long as the other guy is competent.
     
  11. Funnymerc

    Funnymerc Well-Known Member

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    Plot of the ROTF: Decepticons want to awaken the Fallen and drain the suns energy (seems fine to me
     
  12. Gordon_4

    Gordon_4 The Big Engine

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    I think a creative consultant attached to a proven action/sci-fi writer would have probably borne better fruit; giving us tight narrative paired to the movies' admittedly balls-tightening magnificent action set peices.
     
  13. Yggdrasil

    Yggdrasil Banned

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    The basic plot is fine.

    It's the EXECUTION that is shit
     
  14. UTF

    UTF Manifestation of /toy/

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    The problem is 'Lowest Common Denominator"

    Slapstick/crude humor.
    Product placement.
    Hot girls.
    A-listers.
    EXPLOSIONS

    You're never going to get the movie you want because you TF-Fans are simply too small a demographic by yourselves.

    You have to appeal to as many people as you can, as easily as you can.

    And that is why the movies suck.

    And for the record, I enjoyed the 1st and 3rd movies immensely, even with all their faults.
     
  15. Yggdrasil

    Yggdrasil Banned

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    Many films are loved by both fans and casual movie goes and critics, yet none pf them stud low enought to go to the lowest common denominator.

    I certanly don't rember Batman farting in the Dark Knight, or seeing giant elephant balls in Two Towers, or a buch od dick jokes in Harry Potter...
     
  16. Black Oracle

    Black Oracle Black Convoy's Dark Angel

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    Consulting TFs writers of the past would suggest a direction of catering the movies toward the fans rather than the general audience. I don't think that's what the movie creators wanted. They wanted something with wide appeal. It only makes sense that they went with known movie writers.

    I don't think consulting someone like Simon Furman would necessarily have improved the movies either. It may have just complicated things more in the writing process. I don't regret that we got Orci, Kurtzman and Kruger writing the movies. I can see positives in their ideas and takes on the TFs. Kruger probably did a better job of adhering to G1 source material than Orci & Kurtzman. For the medium they were writing for, they did what they could to please old-time fans and bring in new ones. I can't fault them too much. I've enjoyed the movies on the whole. And I bet if the movies had stuck closer to their original scripts with less interference and changes from Bay, they could have been better overall. I think some of the decisions made by Bay was what introduced some 'dislikable' elements into the movies, for example, the crude humour. It's not the writers that I feel had a poor grasp and regard of the source material, it's the director. Having said that though, I bear Mr. Bay no ill-will. I am grateful to him as well for making the TFs movies so big. He's devoted many years into them.

    I'm still convinced we could have had Sideswipe and Sunstreaker for ROTF rather that the twins we got. And the Arcee triplets would have been combiners rather than individual characters to name a couple of things that Orci & Kurtzman had intended. Plus, it was Bay that wanted to to cut out much of the backstory for the Primes in ROTF that Orci & Kurtman had written. I would have rather seen more of that than Sam and friends' long journey of discovery in Egypt. And if I recall correctly, Prime and Megatron's final fight in TF1 would have ended in a stalemate originally. It was Bay that wanted to make Sam the big hero that saved the day by shoving the Allspark into Megatron's chest. The resulting portrayal of Prime being weak at the end of TF1 was something the next two movies tried hard to compensate for by making Optimus a one-bot killing machine.
     
  17. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot The Strongest.

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    You're probably right, but I always come back to the inescapable truth that this movie being made, was a step by step uphill battle of lobbying and compromises. The producers had to keep hammering on the studio and even the director to convince them that the concept could be financially viable, and in doing so were forced to not overplay their hand. They knew they couldn't ask for too many concessions, because people bristled at the idea of making a movie about plastic toys from the 80's - that being their total misconception that the intellectual property had no depth or merit.

    For them to try and say "We want one of the fathers of this mythos to be closely involved with the story", might have caused the execs to simply balk at the notion. They were probably ignorant as to its intricacy.

    In a sense, yes - but I think initially they were heading in the right direction when it all began, then Mr. Bay sort of tainted the final product with his very juvenile and superficial quirks. Dick jokes, objectification of the female lead, rampant product placement etc - it all bothers some people more than others. If there had been less time spent on all that and more time spent on the emotional nuances of the story and characters, then I think we would have a lot more satisfied fans. Bay's style can make things seem more vapid than they are.

    Yes, absolutely, but the screenwriter would definitely have to possess the gift of evoking strong emotions and creating iconic moments.
     
  18. Wars

    Wars Regular At Swerve's™

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    While I do love the movies in all their glory, I would like to see maybe a reboot or something written by Simon Furman.
     
  19. shroobmaster

    shroobmaster Well-Known Member

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    You don't need to know Transformers lore to avoid humping dogs, glaring plot holes and bad characterization. I definetely think that the problem isn't knowledge about the franchise (we KNOW Hasbro is always helping with informing the crews about TF history) as much as it is Michael being bat shit insane as usual.

    TF3 and TF2 just have some flaws that are so so crazy and bigger than any other movie both Alex/Orci and Krueger worked on before that it GOT to be Bayhem's fault. Plus, if I recall, BW writers weren't fans of Transformers since day one either, they learned with time, but BW had decent writing since episode one.
     
  20. Wheeljack_Prime

    Wheeljack_Prime Don't eat me

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    Well, we did see Buckbeak poop in Harry Potter 3...
     

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