Transformers 2: Rise of the Fallen


Yesterday afternoon I bought some tickets for a midnight showing of Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen. It took about three hours to get everyone situated to go into the theatre. We actually sat down at about 10:45 and we sat for the next hour and fifteen minutes waiting. We stared at the screen, watching the monotonous slides with trivia questions on them, with the occasional interruption of a popcorn and soda ad. So that got old pretty fast. The two young girls that were sitting next to me decided to leave their nerd/stoner friends about fifteen minutes after I sat down. After wondering why these fairly attractive young ladies were with these quite geeky guys, I received an answer to my question, when they returned to their seats wearing Transformers shirts and boxer shorts. Finally after an hour of slowly drinking a Dr. Pepper, sitting with my friends to my right and the girls with their nerd/stoner guys to my left, the real previews started.

Generally I am excited to see the real previews, but this time they were awful. I was not that enthused by the next installment of the Harry Potter series, though the girls next to me sure didn’t mind showing their admiration for Harry. They had a preview for some M. Knight Shyamalan movie that looked as though it was based on an anime cartoon. And after The Happening I don’t think I can trust this guy to make a decent movie. Other previews included some new alien movie and G.I. Joe, which looks to be about the same or worse than Spiderman 2, and that is bad in my book!

Now to the movie, I will try to make this really vague so it doesn’t give away any of the details. First, it’s a long movie, remember that Dr. Pepper I talked about earlier, don’t drink one before you see this movie, I did, its not fun. Next, its rated PG-13 and its even pushing the limits there, if your kids are not 13 don’t bring them to the movie, see it first and judge for yourself, but its rated that way for a reason.

The plot of the movie is basic and it works fine, it’s the plausibility factor that ruins part of the movie for me. Just taking into consideration the enormous amount of money that it must take reconstruct what these transformers destroy is mind boggling. I know its just a movie, but it starts to be a little bit much. Tucson can’t even rebuild a downtown that already exists in a 10 year time frame, the enormous amount of damage done to these cities must ruin their economies and take decades to repair.

The action is probably the strongest part of the movie. Its great fun to watch them transform and the battle scenes are pretty amazing. The battles that take place in wide open deserts and forests are much better than the ones that take place in cities, it’s a bit easier to believe.

As far as humor goes, it’s a bit racy for a PG-13 movie. There is a lot more cussing and sexual innuendoes in this movie compared to the first Transformers. Scenes that got the most laughs were generally either sexual in nature or awkward for Sam. There is also drug consumption that ends up not being that big of a deal and what they call “sci-fi violence” what I call Transformers fighting, again not a really big deal. At times Meagan Fox, who plays Sam’s girlfriend Mikaela, is wearing some pretty skimpy clothing and is not afraid to flaunt it. The other girl at college try’s to force herself on Sam and she too is at times scantly dressed. I am not entirely bothered by a lot of this stuff, but I’ve heard many parents complaining that it goes a little bit too far, so I am giving you fair warning, this is more racy than the first movie.

The political angle is interesting. You might remember that they poked fun at former President Bush in the first movie. This time around they don’t really overtly make fun of President Obama, but they do poke fun at his foreign policy approach. They send in a Washington bureaucrat to “oversee” the operations that the transformers are involved in. It finally comes out that the government does not want to work with the transformers, fearing that their presence has brought wrath form the Decepticons to the country. Then he goes on to say that they might be willing to negotiate with the Decepticons, hmmm, seems a little similar to real life now doesn‘t it. I’m surprised he didn’t ask Optimus Prime to address him by his tile, whatever that might be.

The ethical angle is interesting as well. The transformers chastise humans because they wage wars. Yet throughout the whole film you get to see what amounts to be an extremely long and damaging war between good and evil transformers. It seems a bit hypocritical of the transformers to chasten humans for their capacity to wage wars yet they are fighting in a war that hardly ever ceases.

All-in-all, its alright. I wouldn’t buy the movie and I wouldn’t see it again. It was definitely better than those Spiderman movies that I mentioned earlier, but it doesn’t hold a candle to last summers The Dark Knight. If you are over the age of 13 and/or not easily offended go see the movie for yourself and find out. If you don’t like anything that pushes the line a bit then don’t go see the movie, wait until you can fast-forward.

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