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Robots In Disguise! 20/07/2007

Posted by lmd64 in cinema.
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More Than Meets The Eye
So, went to the premier of the Transformers movie on wednesday night in the Savoy. The first properly sunny evening of the summer, and we end up in the cinema. Go figure. Personally, I was really disappointed that JJ Abrams’ Cloverfield trailer didn’t get aired, so far I’ve only seen it on YouTube, I wanted it to view it in its natural habitat, in fullscreen technicolour surround sound glory. Anyhoo.
The film itself was actually great fun, although the main character, Sam, appeared to get more one-dimensional as the film went on. He starts off as a nerdy geekish type (sheesh, in a Transformers movie, who’d have thunk it!), who ends up as the brave human hero guy that saves the day and gets the girl, pure wish-fulfillment for the overly-imaginative dorks in the class. Weird though, he’s much more interesting at the start, where he’s shy and nervous and really actually very funny in front of his future potential girlfriend (of particular note, the masturbation conversation with his parents – no, really), than he is at the end, being urged on by the various dizzyily whirling and transforming robots to “Run, Sam! Run! Run with the box!” or whatever.
NOTE: that was not a spoiler. There’s hardly anything to spoil in any case, as plots go, this was as predictable as the original cartoons. The butch daddy-o figure of Optimus Prime humourlessly promises to “protect all humans” in the same moralising style as he did back in the 80s, while Megatron gets a laugh flicking a pedestrian away from his leg like an ant or a bug while muttering “Ooo, disgusting” to himself. Some of the robots lines were just spot on, “Autobots, roll out!” being a classic.
Actually, even the opening credits that included “in association with HASBRO” got a wee chuckle from semi-middle-aged guys who’d never realised at the time that the cartoons were just a way for Hasbro to sell their dayglo clicky-clacky plastic crap. Much better than the dayglo clicky-clacky plastic crap kids have these days though.
One thing I have to say though, the soundtrack was a little iffy at times, they really should have used the theme from the cartoons at times, or at least re-score the motif for great big orchestra, FM synths and vocoder. And big hair power guitar solos, of course.
The battle scenes get a little bewildering though at a few stages, hard to tell the Autobots from the Deceptacons at times. The cartoons kept it simple, everything in basic primary colours, easy for the kiddies to distinguish the goodies from the baddies, but there’s a need to the film’s SFX to be as impressive as possible, which made everything a little hyper-stimulating. I was somewhat wired coming out of the cinema, which I guess is a good thing.
Oh, the shame of it! I'm surprised there wasn't a bright red glow emanating from underneath the helmet's rim (I did not just say that, did I? Oh, the shame of it) The after-premier party drinks and grub helped me wind down a bit (Tiger Beer, gooood, teeny tiny baby burgers, greaaat, shot glasses of creme brulée, loooovely), plus wearing the Optimus Prime helmet while doing an impromptu rendition of ‘Around The World’ was wildly entertaining too, and nobody around me was embarrassed for me at all, no.
And finally, it took me till the end of the movie to realise why they kept using the line “more than meets the eye”. Duh.

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