Delirious Destruction: Our Review of ‘Transformers: The Last Knight’

Posted in Movies, Theatrical by - June 21, 2017
Delirious Destruction: Our Review of ‘Transformers: The Last Knight’

Not unlike the effects any number of drugs, the latest installment of Transformers is numbing, dazzling, and utterly incoherent, leaving you later feeling uncomfortable, confused, and probably a little bit ashamed.

The Last Knight is the fifth though unlikely far from the final entry into this toy-based universe featuring robots fighting robots (because, money), but it’s certainly the most outrageous yet. And that’s saying a lot. It’s also mostly more of the same.

Michael Bay helms this franchise yet again, and if he ever cared the slightest bit about characters, plot, or any storytelling element, he doesn’t here. It’s entirely focused on action, explosions, sound effects, and a tons of sweeping camera pans. And while those elements are executed to some entertaining end, this is one stupid, base film that is the bad kind of exhausting.

 

Not that the plot even matters, it’s worth mentioning only because it’s so absurd. Rather, plots plural. There is once again an object sought after by men and robots alike for various purposes: those groups include the government, which kills all transformers; an evil robot goddess who created all robot life; a small group of humans and robots who have for centuries allied themselves with the good robots;  really any combination of blood or steel that we’ve met in any number of movies that may be good or bad. Doesn’t matter.

We are informed of a nearing apocalypse and an entire re-write of global history during one ridiculous sequence by Anthony Hopkins, who plays a goofy and feisty protector of an ancient society alongside Cogman, his C-3PO knockoff (one of many Star Wars similarities) . He explains that great artistic and scientific achievements were made and all battles and wars were won with the help of robots. Also, transformers fought Nazis.

So whatever. Cade (Mark Wahlberg) holes up with the good robots until the Megatron, enlisted by the government, comes for a special talisman. He is later found by Hopkin’s odd British elitist, who also brings on board a woman (Laura Haddock) who is really smart and affluent, but more importantly to Bay and the characters, single and hot.

At two and a half hours, The Last Knight will smash you into the ground. Chaotic, frenetic, and alternatively stunning and revolting action gives way to more of the same, save for a when some exposition is required. Usually they happen simultaneously though. It’s hard to believe it took three people to write this film. Nevermind side plots that include romance, loss of family, or the presence of John Turturro. There are also dino and dragon bots.

There is nothing the least bit redeeming about Transformers except of course, the box office dollars. Yet, there is something distressingly enticing about all of it. It’s an orgy of gunfire, acrobatics, destruction, and anarchy that perfectly simulates a child smashes two toys together as hard as he or she can while providing random sound effects. Or you know, a bad trip.

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Anthony is a lover of a good story in any form, on any subject. Tirelessly navigating filmdom, he is equal parts an unbridled idealist and stubborn curmudgeon, trying to strike a balance between head and heart when it comes to pop culture. He pens stories about television, music, the environment, lifestyles, and all things noteworthy and peculiar.