The problems with these movies (and how to fix them)

Discussion in 'Transformers Movie Discussion' started by Colonel Manface, Jul 5, 2014.

  1. Colonel Manface

    Colonel Manface Well-Known Member

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    H'okay. I'm gonna start off by giving my review of Age of Extinction, so bear with me.

    I liked it, it was good, but the first half was much stronger than the second half, which dragged and was somewhat all over the place.

    Cade is a better central character than Sam, the cast is better this time around, the writing and plot actually seemed solid for about half an hour, which is more than we usually get with these movies. The effects were great, as usual, and Kelsey Grammar was a great bad guy.

    Oh! And Lockdown! We finally have a bad Transformer who's in the whole movie, who gets into multiple fights and actually manages to be a threat. He kicks Prime and Bumblebee's ass - even if him not being able to kill Cade was extremely stupid and made him look incompetent as Hell - and even got some personality and characterization. If this is a sign of what's to come for the next bad guys, I'm excited. Let's face it, the Decepticons never got much face time or chance to show off their personality.

    Now, onto the bad!

    Prime is still a nut job. I'm not one of those people who thinks he should be a pacifist, but he yells "kill" and "die" more in this movie than any of the others combined, I think. It's understandable given his buddies are being hunted down, but it's still over the top. I think I can count on my fingers the amount of times Peter Cullen gets a line that he doesn't yell.

    Actually, the characterization of the Autobots in general is pretty shitty. In lieu of character development, they mostly just pick fights with each other and act like children? I know that's been a thing since Transformers 1, with Bee pissing on Simmons, but it's gotten irritating now. These are supposed to be characters with arcs and personalities, and sure, Hound's fun, but is there really that much of a difference between him and Drift or Crosshairs? They're all violent and dopey.

    It's 2014 and how is Bay still showing three seconds of a Transformers fight and then panning away to show what Generic Blonde Actress #1830 thinks about all of this? I don't care if she's scared, I wanna see Prime and Galvatron fight. That's a big problem with these movies, and I think I've just stopped being able to look past them. Bay constantly cuts away to focus on the humans, or keeps the humans in the foreground and has the fighting in the background, and it's still shaky cam. He and the producers seem to be under the impression that people care more about the humans than the robots. They don't. If these were Go-Bot movies, they wouldn't be nearly so successful, because people care about the Transformers. Even if they don't know all the names and can't always tell them apart, it's what they're there to see. That and action and explosions.

    They're only four movies into the series and they've contradicted themselves three times in a row. There's stuff in the movies that completely conflict with other stuff, and I don't understand how that's all right. People give Marvel huge credit for having such tight and consistent universe, and they have nine movies. Transformers has four, three of which had the same guy writing them, and the contradictions are insane. And not even that, they use the exact same story beats, the plots of each movie are the same. Autobots have to claim some ancient device so the enemy doesn't get it and if they do, they'll destroy humanity. It's kind of sad when the Cybertron games manage to have deeper and more creative plots than that.

    The last thing I'm gonna bring up is the dialogue. There are scenes that feel like they're a bunch of disjointed one off line reads that have been edited into a conversation, like a bunch of non sequiturs. It's insane. And Bay still hasn't gotten out of the habit of panning away when a Transformer is talking, like during Prime's speech to the Dinobots? Yeah, I really wanted to know what Drift thought about all of this, so thanks for focusing on him for two solid minutes.

    So rant / review over. I tried to bring up the stuff that's fixable and bring it up in a constructive way instead of just "DA MOVIE IS BAD N DUM" which doesn't help anybody. I had a lot of fun with the other three, but I think I had issues that built up to the point that I can't ignore them any more. Age of Extinction definitely doesn't deserve 17%, but if someone doesn't like it, it definitely doesn't mean they don't know how to have fun. There are a lot of legitimate problems in this movie. In all of them.

    How do we fix them? Let's talk about it? I'd give you theories but I've already rambled on for way too long and even I've stopped reading this by now.
     
  2. World Prime

    World Prime Za Warudo!

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    I don't agree with everything you said, but this part really needs to be drilled into their heads. And the saddest part? With rotf and dotm Bay actually got a lot better about this, and for aoe he backslid. BADLY. I mean, there hasn't been this much cutting away from an awesome robot fight since the 07 movie and it was one of the most disappointing things about it.

    I'd also like to add that they seriously backslid on the amount of transformation scenes! We probably got half as many or less than dotm, and that was unacceptable, especially considering what they were replaced with (a bunch of CGI cubes and lines flying around?!?!).

    SIGH, AOE was such a "one step forward, two steps backwards" experience and that was what makes me most sad about it.
     
  3. Colonel Manface

    Colonel Manface Well-Known Member

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    After Pacific Rim and Godzilla - even Real Steel - I don't understand how he gets away with shooting fights the way he does.
     
  4. VPTwarrior

    VPTwarrior Warrior

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    How to fix them

    Transformers: more detail on the allspark, done.

    Transformers Revenge of the Fallen: cut back on the jokes and human screen time by...25%, removes devastators balls(mostly because nothing that was part of him even had wrecking balls so they just...appeared). Have the fallen trapped in another dimension like they were supposed to then released at the end. Explain why only Optimus could kill him or he thought so. Explain how the allspark needed the star harvester to recharge it and detail on energon a little more so it relates to the last movie more. Have the other 5 or 11 depending on what you know be shown killed by the fallen and the final prime imprison him before hiding it himself. Have the twins do something more productive and badass. Keep the fights the way they are, they are beautiful but add maybe another 30 seconds to the final fight.

    Transformers Dark of the Moon: not have this movie, it was terrible. The decepticon plan not work, why? What on earth would transformers, a race of sentinent robotic beings that could make drones, need humans as slave labor, that's a higher waste of resorces than using them. Plus no energon, what's the point of bringing Cybertron to earth, theirs no energon. Not only that, all autobot vs decepticon or human vs decepticon fights were pathetically onesided, not a single decepticon was good in that movie, all of them sucked and the budget was spent on a giant worm instead of something far cooler like bruticus or menasor or anyone else that's not a giant worm, we are also treated to more sam, screw this movie.

    Transformers Age of Extinction: human scenes are long for character building i get it, cut it down a little bit. Transformers need more normal lines but for the most part they were rather good, all of them got a fair amount of screentime. I wanted to see Drift and Crosshairs doing more. Maybe more flashbacks of Topspin, Sideswipe, Mirage, and other autobots being hunted, even if its sad. Other than the long human scenes, the main problem i had was not focusing on the Transformer fights, too focused on the humans in a giant robot fight. So he has no excuse for that. Also a link between the creators and the allspark would be nice so anyone who does remember the first movie won't be confused and a proper introduction for the Dinobots.

    Transformers 5(what i would like): An explaination for the Allspark and Creators. No Prowl or Unicron, don't want either. Good fight scenes like Revenge of the Fallen. Only Galavatron doing that partforming transformation. Maybe Kup or Ironfist. Blitzwing would be wonderful, Astrotrain would be beautiful if they don't make him an actual space shuttle but a cybertronian jet like Drifts helicopter mode but he can still become a train. Maybe even Sixshot this movie or next.
     
  5. Ash from Carolina

    Ash from Carolina Junior Smeghead

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    Being shorter films would help. I think people go to see the films for a roller coaster ride while fireworks are going off. But the films sometimes seem like an epic cross journey by car with relatives you don't really like to get to the theme park with the roller coaster and the fireworks.

    Don't totally cut the humans out of the movies, but don't have some long drawn out human story when people are going to see the robots fight.

    It might be a nice change to have a film without a McGuffin. Maybe have a movie where the Decepticon plot isn't something that would destroy the Earth but maybe a movie where the Decepticon plot was just to crush the Autobots once and for all. Lockdown out to get Prime seemed like good enough of an idea for a film without adding all the extra stuff the film threw into the mix.
     
  6. BarricadeLives

    BarricadeLives i'm you! i'm your shadow!

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    i laughed
     
  7. Scorpio

    Scorpio Well-Known Member

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    Kind of confused how VPTwarrior owns ROTF and not DOTM. I know both movies sucked, but I thought the majority agreed that ROTF was worse... ah well.

    Agreed with all your points here except for the point about Lockdown - which I'll expand on shortly. Most of the issues are due to the director or script writer. I don't think the issues will be fixed until its had a clean reboot.

    As for Lockdown - he was a pretty terrible villain masked by the fact he had a fairly intriguing design. His motivation to capture Optimus did not require the humans assistance and making a deal with the humans was dumb as he could have captured Optimus on his own - as stated by Lockdown 'It was your men who allowed Optimus to escape' (Or something along those lines)

    Granted Lockdown had his own theme - which is a plus. However he ended up doing very little in terms of the movie and his final battle was ruined by a large human involvement. They should really have kept him alive or had him escape as his character was simply their to tease 'The creators' for TF5... at least that's how it feels to me.
     
  8. BarricadeLives

    BarricadeLives i'm you! i'm your shadow!

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    DOTM's 2nd 1/2 is easily the worst part of the franchise for me.

    starscream, shockwave & megatron's disrespectful deaths...it was just too much to accept.

    and let's not get into barricade's voice-dubbing :( 
     
  9. PANTSMAN1973

    PANTSMAN1973 Well-Known Member

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    I,m sorry, but am I the only one who left the cimema cold and numb to this whole sorry business?

    I love Transformers. The movies have never been real Transformers to me. I feel compelled to watch these films because they are Transformers. But they are not my Transformers. They belong to Michael Bay.

    His once inspired slow motion fight scenes that by AOE, have become samey, predictable and over used. The casual way Decepticons are dispatched with in each movie. We must be running out of any credible Decepticons by now!

    Hound's last stand, Lockdown and the Dinobots aside, AOE left me unsatisfied and eager for the film to just end.

    Sorry to all the guys that enjoyed it. But I cannot be alone here in feeling jaded with the whole thing............

    Please can Michael Bay quit with this now and somebody else give this a go?
     
  10. uruseiranma

    uruseiranma Well-Known Member

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    My biggest issue is continuity, notably regarding the Transformers.

    It goes beyond just the disappearance of Barricade in the first film. We have all sorts of Decepticons that show up and leave, like The Doctor, and the two flying robots that bring him the thing he stuffs in Sam's mouth.

    Even in AOE, much like how Wheelie disappears for the last 1/3 of ROTF, Brains just disappears after his exposition bit.
     
  11. World Prime

    World Prime Za Warudo!

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    Lockdown also said something about the creators wanting their chessboard swept clean, and to do that I think he had to kill the Autobots.... I guess.... Every fucking idea in this movie was so half-finished, I can't even really defend it at all...

    And yeah, nothing in the world is more frustrating than an editor cutting away from an awesome robot fight scene that JUST STARTED to show some pathetically uninteresting human cowering in the dirt. Even worse is when the humans actually affect the outcome of the battle! Lockdown can kick Prime's ass, but can't squish a couple slow-moving humans?! There's just no excuse.
    No, you're not alone. Everything that AoE did right was too little too late, and it seems like they went backwards as much as they went forwards. Bay didn't really seem like he was trying this time around.

    And yeah, who else is left? Galvatron is ruined because he's not even a fucking Transformer anymore (that fake transformation effect was the worst idea ever and pretty much ruined my interest in a lot of the fight scenes that could have been awesome).
     
  12. SunSwipe5

    SunSwipe5 Twin Hellion Masters Of Jet Judo

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    If you really want to fix these films, you have to go to where the problems originate. Bay's team has issues galore that come thru in these films. First you have the craptastic writing,then editing issues,continuity issues, too much human focus,very little Transformer character development and the list goes on. You want to solve these recurring issues,then you need a new director and team.
     
  13. rodster6

    rodster6 Well-Known Member

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    Write the Transformers as actual, real characters.
    Not 2 dimensional special effects that are given a couple of lines of dialogue each that amounts to little more than shouting slogans and puns. Characters I actually care about are what a film lives or dies by. If I'm not invested in the characters, I don't care about what they are doing.
    When I see a new Transformer like Hound, he gets little introduction as to why or where he came from and then more often than not, will disappear by the next film with little explanation as to why or where. It feels like the writer doesn't care so why should I.

    A new story.
    So far the last three films have had pretty much the same story, laid out the same way. It's boring to watch a film and know exactly what will happen, in what order etc. Shake things up a little, continue plot points from previous films rather than just dropping them in favor of a new mcguffin.
     
  14. 03Mach1

    03Mach1 Logic has been replaced with blind ignorance.

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    So Michael Bay doesn't know. Steven Spielberg doesn't know. Millions of ticket buying movie goers don't know. But we know.


    Makes sense.
     
  15. Colonel Manface

    Colonel Manface Well-Known Member

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    I was just thinking, and this is with the nostalgia glasses totally off, the '86 movie actually has better writing than the new movies. Even just focusing on the dialogue, the characters say cool shit. "One shall stand, one shall fall" is infinitely cooler than "Give me your face!" Why is that? Why did a bunch of guys who banged together a script for a movie primarily created to sell toys manage to come up with something more memorable and quotable than someone writing for a major blockbuster franchise, who's paid a lot of money?

    The character beats and arcs are mostly like bad fanfiction. Sam Witwicky seriously seems like somebody's terrible fan character. He's obnoxious and kind of annoying, but he saves the day and he's arguably the most important character in at least the first two movies. The more I think about it, the less I understand how a cartoon for children that was primarily created to sell toys managed to have better plots, better writing and better characterization than movies that cost hundreds of millions of dollars. I'm not gonna say the G1 stuff was perfect, but Christ. You knew who was who and they had deeper personalities than "fart joke piss joke punch punch explode."
     
  16. rodster6

    rodster6 Well-Known Member

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    A good movie and a successful movie can be two very different things. Lots of movies far, far better than Transformers made far less money.
    Also, a film making millions of money for someone other than me, isn't a success to me. A movie that I enjoy as it has a good story and interesting characters is a success for me.
     
  17. Colonel Manface

    Colonel Manface Well-Known Member

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    Adjusted for inflation, the '89 Batman made nearly 800 million worldwide. Is anybody gonna argue that Tim Burton made an accurate adaptation of the source material? Or even that it's a very good adaptation?
     
  18. 03Mach1

    03Mach1 Logic has been replaced with blind ignorance.

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    The 89 Batman movie is exceptional even to this day. Before that movie and to an extent even after that, comic book movies were a joke. They were not even considered by movie studios as viable options until then. Burton brought grit and realism to Batman long before Nolan even thought about taking his turn.
     
  19. Colonel Manface

    Colonel Manface Well-Known Member

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    Grit and realism? No, that was Nolan. Tim Burton was poisoned cosmetics and penguins with bombs strapped to them. Batman '89 doesn't hold up nearly as well as it should. And Superman came out in '78, way before Batman. People viewed that as a legitimate movie and still consider it a classic.

    But I agree, he definitely showed the studios that comic book movies were viable, just like Bay showed studios that Transformers are a viable film franchise, just like Dreamwave showed Hasbro that there was still interest in the Transformers. But that's not a mark of quality. I don't hate the movies by any stretch of the imagination, they're fun, they are, but the flaws are piling up and I'm getting more and more burned out as they go on. Are the films made for and aimed at me? No. But a problem is a problem, and you can't argue they don't exist.
     
  20. uruseiranma

    uruseiranma Well-Known Member

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    Plus if one thinks of it, both the 89 Batman and The Dark Knight have the entire audience just enthralled and hypnotized by the Joker, to the point that much of the film's flaws are looked over.
     

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