Transformers 2007 Movie Review


Photo via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons license.

Optimus Prime is the leader of the Autobots in the war against the Decepticons for the cube called The AllSpark, which gives life to new robots. This film series, up until their fifth, was directed by the man displayed above in a blue shirt, Michael Bay.

Lauren Holiday, News Editor

Transformers was one of the first movies to ever use CGI animation to such an extent in creating robots in our real world. Set in 2007, it would be years before Pacific Rim or Reel Steel were directed. This movie had a combination of animation and real life settings. Using a combination of a 3-D set to manipulate the CGI robot models as well as a real hand made set, it allowed for a much more impressive production. Even in some of the scenes, they would create real models of the robots so that the CGI animators could have a reference of what they would look like in proportion to the set or when one of the actors would need to sit on the shoulder of a robot or stand before it.

Mapping and measuring were incredibly important aspects in this movie. For every time a robot would stand or sit or destroy something, lines would have to be drawn so that these metallic titans could properly move about through computer-animated worlds. The drive for this movie was to make everything look as real as possible. The texture and painting of these robots required hundreds of photos and studies to be made on the design and engineering of vehicles. These robots and cars could not look as real as they did if they were perfectly clean, which is why there’s so much dust and grime throughout the film. An especially challenging obstacle for every CGI made film is lighting, and this task was made more difficult because of the reflections that cars and metal parts create. This emphasis on reality was truly enforced by the director, Michael Bay, who directed all of the acting and the film’s iconic explosions. In fact, the budget for this movie was 147 million dollars, and luckily it retrieved a box office total of almost 710 million dollars.

In this movie there was also a great selection of actors and actresses at Michael Bay’s disposal. Megan Fox, Shia LaBeouf, John Tuturro, Josh Duhamel (who just performed in Love, Simon as Simon’s father), and Donn Kevin (who was also featured in Godzilla 1998) were terrific cast-members. Needless to say, Bay had a lot of talented people to work with for this production, including the actors who voiced the robots.

Michael Bay also had an astonishing soundtrack for his movie which was composed by Steve Jablonsky. Some of the prevalent soundtracks in this score contain ominous and incoherent lyrics. These background singers are not identified but it contributes to the suspense of the film. There are a selection of small clips from other popular songs which the film also integrates. This includes a few seconds of Baby come back, I got you (I feel good)Before it’s too late by the Goo Goo Dolls,  Burn it to the ground by Nickelback, This moment by Disturbed, and the full song of What I’ve Done by Linkin Park.

As a result of this overwhelming raw talent, the plot of the movie was bound for greatness. This film best fits into the action and science fiction genres. The role of human characters in the story was entertaining and food for thought. The overall moral of the story was to embrace courage, honor, and friendship, which is represented by the phrase “No sacrifice, no victory”. It was even said by some of the characters that the human race was young, and yet it had much potential to create a vast future of positive change.

Rotten tomatoes’ critics rated this movie as a 57% because of the minor violence, consumerism, and minor profanity one would expect from a PG-13 movie. Yet these reasons had a polar opposite appeal to the audience, who rated this movie at an 85%. This split where the audience has a different opinion than professional critics should prove that not all qualified opinions resemble that of bystanders. Audiences adored the explosions and the robotic aliens. Indeed, the dialogue may not have been awe-inspiring, but the intense action makes up for this.

So while this movie won’t have you bending backwards with laughter or sliding out of your seats as you sob with the relativity of yourself and the people on the screen, it will certainly give you something cool to think about. There’s not a plentiful amount of robot movies, especially robots with this level of realistic style. This was a learning experience for all movie creators and future artists because 2-D animation is not up to storytelling today. It’s entirely arguable that if this movie had been made drawn, it would not have been such a hit. There’s a stereotype in today’s society that watching anything 2-D marks you as childish. Style is an important factor for this movie, and so with every new movie there are even more explosions and many more complicated robots.

I would recommend at least checking out the first and second movie of the Transformers franchise. There’s lots of epic pictures and presentations in this movie to feed your craving for robotic alien warfare. It may change your perspective on the artist’s world and how there are a vast variety of ways to execute productions and films. This movie represented a significant shift from their Hasbro Television show, and its lucrativeness led to another eight movies in the franchise.