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Review: Transformers

Though the film won’t set the Hollywood bar for quality sci-fi, Transformers certainly is Michael Bay’s best ever, writes Vinayak Chakrovorty.

movie reviews Updated: Aug 17, 2007 19:13 IST
Vinayak Chakrovorty

Transformers
Cast: Shia LaBeouf, Megan Fox
Direction: Michael Bay
Rating: * * * & 1/2

Every now and then, the machines attack Hollywood. And from the time of The Terminator via The Matrix to whenever the next attack happens (read Transformers 2 — they’ve surely already hit the storyboard for a sequel), it’s always been a sureshot hit at the box-office bullseye.

Movie wiz Michael Bay was really playing it smart when he chose to make a whole film out of a top-selling line of toys (Transformers are originally a range of toys by Hasbro — the kind where a cute car twists and folds to turn into a monster robot).

But, relax. Unlike most video game/ toy-based flicks (Lara Croft and Resident Evil come to mind), this one moves out of the assembly line. <b1>

Bay’s latest mostly serves the FX-ridden action caper with goofy humour. And though the film won’t set the Hollywood bar for quality sci-fi, Transformers certainly is Bay’s best ever (his CV includes Pearl Harbor, Armageddon, Bad Boys and The Rock).

It’s a straight, simple storyline — actually an excuse to set up some supersized stunts. A war breaks out on earth between two robot clans — the good Autobots and the evil Decepticons — hailing from a planet called Cybertron.

Caught in the middle is Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf, Hollywood’s latest dude hero), whose car, it turns out, is an Autobot in disguise, named Bumblebee. Sam, we learn, has the map to something called Allspark, which will give unlimited power to any robot that owns it. And Bumblebee, apart from protecting Sam against all peril, also unwittingly helps him pataao the high school hottie (Megan Fox).

If you ask me, the Hottie-Sam love angle suspiciously looks like a teenybopper script in itself — probably one that found no takers, so they squeezed it into this film.

Bay has never been known to be high on logic and detail, but he drives home his latest with a sound thwack. Watch Transformers for paisa vasool fun. It’s sincerely juvenile, and you’ll love it for just that much.