Transformers: Age of Extinction is the fourth film of the Transformers franchise and debuts as a “reboot” with a new cast featuring Mark Wahlberg as the struggling protagonist inventor, Stanley Tucci as the successful genius tech company head who partners with Kelsey Grammar, the manipulative CIA antagonist trying to control the future. Nicola Peltz resumes the hot female lead, but this time it’s a little uncomfortable, as she plays Mark’s 17-year-old daughter, a result of his high school relationship.
What the film lacks in plot it makes up for in stunning visual effects, the full extent that computer graphics can project onto a 3D screen. The action shots are as thrilling as ever as the crew does parkour and battles robots through Hong Kong, China, and Texas, destroying everything in their path. The film utilizes chaotic cinema to dramatize further the already riveting animated sequences. Overdone theatrics and slo-mo techniques received many audience laughs for their unnecessary drama and futile attempts at soliciting emotion. There are also some very random appearances from Stanley Tucci’s prime, attractive business partner, who turns into an ass-kicking heroine. Somewhere in the distance Mark’s excited, 17-year-old daughter has found herself a hunky older boyfriend who serves as the designated driver with the uncanny ability to navigate through the unfolding turmoil in each of the countries they happen to traverse (how convenient!).
Before watching the film, I glanced upon the Rotten Tomatoes review and thought it to be overly harsh as critics usually are, but I have to agree with this little score. To be a part of such a large and widely watched franchise comes with a certain expectation, and Transformers: Age of Extinction has quickly failed. It is cliché, overdone, and almost just comedically horrible. It earns many points for its visual appeal, but looks aren’t everything. The extremely poor plot leaves you with an unsettling feeling in your stomach, despite the stereotypical happy ending sunset and rolling credits. Great cinematography, but the writing needs an extreme amount of work. Personally, I do not particularly recommend the film unless you have free tickets or are going out of your way to find something baffling to watch. Those who have seen it, what did you think?