I wish I could say that I noticed that the acronym for Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen could also mean "Rolling On The Floor (laughing)," but it didn't dawn on me until I read Howard Taylor's review of the movie over at Schlock Mercenary.
Then again, Howard is completely awesome and I'm just a part-timer. So, there you go. Credit where credit is due.
I was going to write a review for Transformers: ROTF, but I can't quite muster the venom for it that I was expressing a few days ago after seeing it in IMAX.
Let me just say this; Basically all the negative reviews you've been reading are true. The movie is crass, overlong and impossible to make sense of. Remember when people said that the robots were the best part of the first movie? Well, in the sequel, I didn't even like the robots.
Much has been written about the racist caricature of African Americans with the inclusion of "The Twins," Skids and Mudflap. I was peripherally aware of the controversy going in and didn't think much of it at first. I was willing to give Michael Bay the benefit of the doubt. I mean, I've known dopey white guys in college who used Ebonic slang, so maybe he was making fun of that.
But the buck teeth and the gold tooth is hard to ignore. I was particularly amazed when one of the robots said they didn't read.
In an interview with CHUD, Screenwriters Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman have distanced themselves from the characters saying their look and vocal affectations were not their idea, but were the result of a decision made by director Michael Bay.
In an interview with the Associated Press, Bay doesn't exactly denounce the idea that Skids and Mudflap are racial stereotypes and also does a little bit of passing the buck himself.
"...These are the voice actors. This is kind of the direction they were taking the characters and we went with it."
Bay said the parts "were kind of written but not really written, so the voice actors is when we started to really kind of come up with their characters."
Ultimately, Bay says "I purely did it for kids. Young kids love these robots, because it makes it more accessible to them."
So basically what Bay is saying is that Skids and Mudflap are the Jar Jar Binks of the Transformers universe...
Here's the thing: I can't remember which review I read that says this, but I have to agree with the sentiment - Bay is simply too egotistical to pitch this movie to it's intended audience. He's too bloated with self-esteem to realize this is a movie that SHOULD be for kids.
I was sitting next to a kid watching this movie. Wanna know what he thought every time Skids and Mudflap came on screen? "Every time those robots talk, they use bad words, Mommy."
I mean, this is the guy that put a pair of testicles on Devastator, for crying out loud. Then again, how else are you going to top Bumblebee "peeing" on John Turturro from the first movie?
Something I find particularly egrigious about this movie is Bay flexing his connections in the Department of Defense. There is so much military hardware in this movie, so lovingly shot and beautifully lit, I can only imagine Bay looking over the footage and rubbing his nipples like Simon Cowell at the thought of it.
When I finished watching this movie on Wednesday, I sent the following update to Twitter: "Transformers 2: Never has a movie so loud been so boring." The scenes shot in IMAX with Devastator at the pyramids was impressive, but the rest of the film was a twitching bore.
Has anyone else seen the film since it came out on Wednesday or are you waiting for the weekend to check it out? If you saw it, what did you think? If you haven't seen it, have the bad reviews dissuaded you?
Leave your comments below!