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A review of Tansformers (2007)

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Sep. 1st, 2007 | 12:34 pm

Toy Story. You don't expect The Seventh Seal of a film about a civil war between giant alien robots that turn into cars and planes, but a bit of characterisation would have been nice.

The admittedly mind-blowing special effects go some way in distracting the viewer away from the rather hum-drum, sub-Spielbergian motions of the narrative, and there are some moments of genuine, self-depreciating comic relief amongst the nonsensical b*ll*cks that pass for a plot, but the overall impression one gets is of ennui and formula.

Shia LaBeouf is rather good as the main human focus of the story, but his love interest is so wooden you fear he may get splinters. Jon Voight once again proves that he'll do anything for a pay cheque although John Turturro wonderfully camps it up as a secret service agent that specialises in giant alien robots that turn into cars (as you do).

Of course, over-grown boys of a certain age will get an illicit, nostalgic thrill with the references to the cartoon of their youth (the film gets some kudos for retaining the original voice of main goodie robot Optimus Prime, which is fabulously gravelly and distinctive), but really it all amounts to time-wasting nonsense designed to bankrupt middle class parents by spoilt demands for cheaply-made shape-shifting plastic lumps. The robots, although brilliantly animated, are confusingly designed so one looks pretty much like another, and their motivations appear to be as deep as a kiddie's paddling pool... which has sprung a leak on a hot summer's day.

Kinetic yet traction-less, "Transformers" proves that there's nothing that is 'more than meets the eye' about most Hollywood blockbusters these days.

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