REVIEW: Transformers: The Last Knight
Directed by Michael Bay
By Christopher Spencer
Directed by Michael Bay, Transformers: The Last Knight stars Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Hopkins, Josh Duhamel, Laura Haddock, Isabela Moner, Stanley Tucci, John Turturro and Peter Cullen as the voice of Optimus Prime. Optimus Prime has vanished, and our world is filled with more Autobots and Decepticons than ever before. Cade Yeager and his Autobot team are soon thrown into a new world of the truth about why Transformers are really here, and what great war is soon to come between Earth and Cybertron.
To many people who know me, I have made my feelings about Michael Bay’s Transformers movies clear: it is garbage. The whole series has, in my eyes, done nothing new or exceptional to the art of cinema or even to pop culture. The Last Knight is no different.
It is not offensively awful like 2014’s Age of Extinction, nor is it as senseless and racist as 2009’s Revenge of the Fallen, but it is still another overblown, bloated, poorly written and directed piece of trash that one forgets very quickly after seeing it.
The thing that does draw people to these movies is the idea of big, epic action that features cool robots, incredible special effects, and Bumblebee. The Last Knight has epic SCALE action, but it all comes way too late after we’ve just spent 2 hours of nothing beforehand, just to get a final battle of over-produced CGI that somehow looks considerably worse than the first movie 10 years ago.
The Last Knight is teasing audiences the idea that Optimus Prime, a figure of heroism and courage, is now turning against his friends in a “Dom from Fate of the Furious” type twist. This is literally nothing. Optimus is barely in this movie, and his turn to evil is mere seconds. It is a rushed plot point in a movie made of rushed plot points.
What is that secret history of Transformers that I mentioned before? Anthony Hopkins is constantly sputtering words about Merlin and knights and World War II and more nonsense than perceivable, but I still have no idea. None of it makes sense and all happens too fast to comprehend, meaning nothing to no-one
The writing, while done by different screenwriters, is still moronic and juvenile, the pacing and editing is atrocious, the cinematography is downright annoying as it constantly changes aspect ratio without meaning, and Michael Bay’s direction is still another exercise in painful, exhausting futility.
The Last Knight had one or two slightly humorous lines, a few small callbacks to the 1986’s The Transformers: The Movie, and Isabela Moner is doing her best with nothing. That’s all the nice things I can say about this…thing. The movie rips off setups, characters and scenes from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Suicide Squad, and Independence Day: Resurgence, and features some honestly embarrassing performances from Mark Wahlberg and Anthony Hopkins.
Transformers: The Last Knight might have proved once and for all that these movies do not matter, that it’s all the same thing over and over again, with not a single ounce of care for the human brain. There is no continuity, logic, care, intelligence, decency, or craft for this movie. Transformers: The Last Knight is superfluous, horrendously constructed, stunningly numb, and in the words of the movie itself “it’s all horseshit”.