I’m politically liberal, which I mention because it mystifies me when people fall for a fairly obvious ideologue/fake populist like Donald Trump.
The same reasoning process extends to the movies I enjoy in that the Transformers have always been terrible (I give a pass to the first–it wasn’t great by any means–but it was at least new and novelty matters) but enough people don’t seem to think the same way–especially internationally–that they seem to make lots of money quite reliably, hand over fist.
Despite being loud, obnoxious, sexist and the cinema equivalent of diet soda (less taste and offering dubious benefit) people can’t seem to get enough of them.
So, it’s very likely that Transformers: The Last Knight will be a rousing success.
And just like Trump, it sends the entirely wrong message but don’t just take my word for it.
Suppose someone that you though of as a friend slapped you upside the head, for no apparent reason, every time they saw you.
It’s less an issue of pain–it was never enough to cause physical harm–than one of blatant disrespect. Eventually you’ll come to the point that you have two options: Either resign yourself to this daily assault on your person or attempt to take control over what has become a pretty untenable situation.
That’s how I feel about the Transformers movies. Time after time I’m being hit upside the head by barely-there characterization, nonsensical plots and sexism.
To be honest, I’ve given up on the franchise every since Transformers: Dark of the Moon, where it became apparent that director Michael Bay accepted that logic and a half-decent plot were secondary to butt-loads of CGI tomfuckery.
But I don’t blame Bay (not entirely, anyway). Reason being, do you blame the drug addict when his so-called friends–knowing full well he has a problem–decide to party with him anyway?
No I blame ‘us,’ by which I mean everyone who keeps paying to see these damn movies in theaters.
If the producers for a moment thought that they would start losing money, they’d change it up in a heartbeat.
But that’s the problem: They know that they can turn out as much Transformers crap as they want, people–seemingly the bulk on them in China, so there’s that–will continue to pay to see it.
So how can I blame Michael Bay for making bad movies when really bad movies are apparently what we think we deserve?
As I mention in my latest video (below the text), the most recent trailer for Star Trek: Beyond (I don’t care that there’s no colon, I’m putting one in anyway) looks pretty interesting.
There’s a lot going on–maybe even a bit too much because from a narrative standpoint I have no idea why things are happening beyond the obvious. In some instances that’s not a bad thing.
In this case? No so much.
Though at least Orci and Kurtzman aren’t writing because the moment when ‘Bones’ McCoy (Karl Urban) decided to give a Tribble a transfusion of Khan’s blood–never mind the whole Khan reveal in the first place–I accepted that with Star Trek: Into Darkness the franchise had official jumped the shark (though their penchant for ‘magic blood’ as a plot device was the Fourth Horseman of the Apocalypse as far as movie Armageddon goes).
Can we just accept that found footage movies, as a sub-genre, are for the most part indescribably lame (The Blair Witch Project gets a pass because it was the first, and who doesn’t like shiny new toys)?
Most movies, especially genre-favorites like science fiction and horror (and increasingly dramas) require a suspension of belief to become immersed in the story. The burden for found footage movies is particularly onerous because you not only have to accept whatever (typically outlandish) scenario animates the movie, but you also have to believe that a normal human being–when chased by a giant monster, a hockey-masked killer, inbred cannibals or whatever–will risk their lives to keep filming, despite that what typically happens when you film and run at the same time is a nausea-inducing mess (unless you have a Steadicam. that is).
This would bother me less if it weren’t for the fact that if I even think too hard while shooting video, it looks like the camera was caught in a hurricane (that’s an exaggeration, though not by much).
Which is why I feel a bit better about 10 Cloverfield Lane. While not a sequel to Cloverfield per se, it at least looks like it was filmed as a film, so there’s that.
Marvel Studios is one of the most successful movie studios today, if profitable, reasonably-budgeted movies are the metric–if you consider a $200-250 million reasonable–so much so that some within Disney were rumored to be disappointed with the earnings of Avengers: Age of Ultron, which took in $1.4 billion at the box office–so if that’s a curse, it’s probably one that rival studios wish were a pandemic.
Unfortunately for the competition, in a way it is.
The reason being, other studios have begun to mimic what they perceive is Marvel’s secret sauce, but can’t seem to get the formula quite right.
For instance, Sony was attempting to create, a la Marvel, an integrated cinematic universe featuring Spider-Man.
Things began well enough with The Amazing Spider-Man, though the weakness of the plan became evident in 2014 with The Amazing Spider-Man 2, when Sony decided to share Spider-Man with Marvel Studios.
And while I use the word ‘sharing;’ I get the feeling that Marvel Studios is running the show–especially since the the Sony Spider-Man movies are being supervised by Kevin Feige (the head of Marvel Studios) and Amy Pascal (former head of Sony Pictures).