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Movie Review – Transformers: Rise of the Beasts

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Heads up, I’ve read over my review and I’d give it a C-. (Not the movie; this review gets a C-.) I ranted way too much for a movie that I didn’t hate. Sometimes I just can’t help myself.

MacGuffins

It shouldn’t come as any big surprise that this movie feels like it was assembled from parts of other movies. There are nearly as many MacGuffins as there are transformers.

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In fiction, a MacGuffin is an object, device, or event that is necessary to the plot and the motivation of the characters, but insignificant, unimportant, or irrelevant in itself.

The warp-key is a perfect example of a MacGuffin, but I think the statuette of the falcon was added as an homage to MacGuffins. If you look up “MacGuffin” on wikipedia.com, you see the iconic example is the Maltese falcon statuette. It’s hard to imagine that the writers/director aren’t aware of that fact and introduced the hawk statuette as an inside joke. If so, bravo. 🙂

Keep big things big and small things small.

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts follows in the footsteps of the Bumble Bee movie by keeping the story more focused and personal instead of the sprawling epics of the Michael Bay Transformer movies. The movie keeps the focus on a small group of characters and doesn’t get sidetracked. That’s something to appreciate. At the same time, the action and consequences ramp up to a planet-saving event, so, no shock there. I’ve been beating this drum for a while, but I wish, just every now and then, action movies like this would keep the scale smaller. It’s like the Star Trek. The TV shows mostly dealt with small, personal stories. But nearly every movie takes on some existential threat to Earth and/or the Federation. But if you think about the best Star Trek movies, such as Wrath of Khan, or Voyage Home (The one with the whales) the stakes weren’t existential.

Thinking… Okay, in Voyage Home, they do save the planet, but the events involved in saving the planet boil down to saving two whales. So it feels like a much smaller, more personal struggle.

I’m just saying, I wish there would be more Transformer movies that had small, personal adventures. And the same can be said for the MCU, etc.

You keep using this word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

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In the movie, there’s a statement that if the thingy explodes it will have more energy than a supernove. So, while I’m in lecture mode, I want to let people know that a supernova explosion is big. Not big like an atomic bomb. A supernova explosion makes an atomic bomb seem like a mosquito fart. If the sun were to go supernova, it can’t, but if it did, the surface of the earth would heat to about 15 times the surface of the sun. And that’s on the side facing away from the explosion. So when the thingy does explode, well, it wasn’t that bad.

Wasted Voices

I had no idea until I started writing this review that Michelle Yeoh was the voice of Airazor. And I’m a big Yeoh fan. The voice of Airazor did sound vaguely familiar, but I certainly didn’t place it. And the same goes for Scourge, who was voiced by Peter Dinklage. Who knew? And Optimus Primal was voiced by Ron Perlman and I never would have guessed. I really don’t think there’s any point in getting an A-lister to voice a character unless there’s going to be some physical resemblance of the character to the actor.

Also, Pete Davidson voiced Mirage, but I didn’t know who Pete Davidson was anyway so no surprise there.

All rants aside

I know this review seems like one long rant, but I actually enjoyed most of the movie. I laughed out loud a few times. Pete Davidson, the voice of Mirage, was apparently given a green ligh t to improvise his lines, and he made hilarious use of it a few times.

The story is really tight. Unlike the Michael Bay Transformer movies this one doesn’t divert into seemingly endless side adventures. There’s pretty much one mission and they stick to it. Each character has their motivations and the consistently act on those motivations.

While not a great movie by any means, it was better than I expected so I’ll give this movie a C+. In my book, a C+ for this movie is a win.

Grade: C+

About The Peetimes: I found three Peetimes spaced out nicely during the movie. I think either of the first two Peetimes are pretty good to use. The tension builds during the last Peetime so I would choose that one only in an emergency.

There are extra scenes during, or after, the end credits of Transformers: Rise of the Beasts.

Rated: (N/A) Language | Intense Sci-Fi Action | Violence
Genres: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Starring: Pete Davidson, Michelle Yeoh, Ron Perlman
Director: Steven Caple Jr.
Writer(s): Joby Harold, Darnell Metayer, Josh Peters
Language: English
Country: United States

Plot
Set in the 1990s, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts will take audiences on an action-packed, globetrotting adventure as the Maximals, Predacons, and Terrorcons join the battle between the Autobots and Decepticons on Earth. Noah, a sharp young guy from Brooklyn, and Elena, an ambitious, talented artifact researcher, are swept up in the conflict as Optimus Prime and the Autobots face a terrifying new nemesis bent on their destruction named Scourge.

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