Do you know how you can tell when your childhood is well and truly dead? When Michael Bay makes some films about it. Well, that’s an exaggeration: whilst the third Transformers film – The Dark of the Moon – wasn’t bad, it wasn’t fantastic either. I want to say it was better overall than the second film, but both films had good bits and bad bits. The plot was less objectionable this time around, and the humour wasn’t as forced, but once again they spent too much attention on the humans, and once again the autobots didn’t really get any character exposition.
We all had such high hopes after the first film – by Michael Bay standards it was actually quite well done. There was a good plot, plenty of character development for the Autobots, and even the Decepticons got some development as well, and the action was well paced and fun to watch. Probably it’s only major flaw was having a few human characters too many, but there was plenty of screen time devoted to both side. Revenge of the Fallen however, despite taking an obscure (but interesting) thread from Transformers lore was incredibly shallow, full of unnecessary gags, and focused too much on the United States Army. One of its few redeeming factors was the fight where Optimus Prime is killed – which brought back some bittersweet memories from the original 1980’s Transformers movie.
I won’t spoil the plot of the third film for those who haven’t seen it, but it was enjoyable enough. One thing I will say though is that Megatron has become such a bitch, it’s horrible. If you watch any of the original TV series, or any of the spin-off and future TV shows, Megatron took no shit from no one. Even in the film where he becomes Galvitron and has to serve Unicorn, he does so very very reluctantly. In both Revenge of the Fallen and The Dark of the Moon however, he basically becomes Starscream, and no one but Starscream should be Starscream.
There was also less fan service this time – which isn’t something you can really complain about, but when it comes to little things like names – the wider audience isn’t going to know any better and the fans will appreciate the subtle nod to something they hold dear. I mean Dino? Who the fuck is Dino?
Biggest mystery of the trilogy though is what the bitch happened to Barricade. Now, for those of you who don’t remember Barricade was the police car that chases Sam before Bumblebee takes him to see the rest of the Autobots. BumbleBee and Barricade have a scuffle, and it looks like Bumblebee kills him but Barricade turns up later during the Decepticon roll call and on the freeway chasing Optimus as they flee into LA with the Allspark. He doesn’t actually engage anyone on the freeway though and he’s never seen again.
I’ll get over it. As I said, third film wasn’t horrible but what can you do. I’ll probably still end up buying the DVD because, you know, can’t leave the collection incomplete.