Michael Bay once described his filmmaking style as “fucking the frame” and make no mistake about it: if his previous films left you barely aquiver, prepare for his magnus limpus, the most flaccid instalment yet, which uselessly assaults the senses and leaves you completely unsatisfied.
Indeed, it’s difficult to overstate how utterly awful this newest Transformers movie is, even by Michael Bay’s barrel-scraping standards. The Hasbro toys are at it again, and this time, we learn how the Autobots fought the Nazis in WWII, and that everything can be made right again with the help of Anthony Hopkins and Merlin’s magical staff. King Arthur gets a scene or two, Dinobots gallop into action, Swastikas explode, women wear tight blouses while running away from interchangeably loud explosions, and audiences lament the aforementioned Oscar-winner’s bafflingly poor decision to associate with a franchise this stupid. (Did the Westworld gig not pay the bills?)
Admittedly, this brand of cynically-made bilge is to be expected from Bay, but Transformers: The Last Knight actually makes you want to go back and reassess the others. The director and his three writers – THREE! – have come up with a screenplay a hyperactive toddler dizzy on lemonade might achieve after emptying his box of mismatched toys and frantically banging the action figurines together. Its only redeeming factor is that it’s shorter than the last one. Otherwise, it’s a bloated, incoherent and unsubtle dumpster fire, brimming with sickening American nationalism and orange-tinted lighting. Remind you of anyone?
Transformers: The Last Knight | Directed by Michael Bay (US, 2017), with Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Hopkins, Peter Cullen. Starts June 22
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