The Transformers film franchise has come a long way since the first movie came out in 2007. The story has become convoluted, the human protagonists are very different, and the explosions seem to double each subsequent installment. All of its movies scored big in the box-office and its toy sales sold really well.
However, the biggest achilles heel of the franchise is its story, with the plot going on a downward spiral since the second half of “Dark of the Moon”. Will “The Last Knight” redeem the series’ plot? Or will it succumb to the “Michael Bay” syndrome and be all flash and explosions and no substance?
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“The Last Knight” starts with a historical lesson narrated by Sir Anthony Hopkins about the first time Transformers and humans helped each other as well as the destiny this partnership will lead them. The history lesson ends just as we discover that there hasn’t been word from Optimus Prime after his departure to find his creators at the end of “Age of Extinction”, and that Transformers kept crashing to earth, wrecking enough havoc for a dedicated team of anti-Transformer hunters to be formed to hunt them down.
The plot of “The Last Knight” isn’t difficult to follow, but the flow of the movie is somewhat rough and confused. The pacing felt like a full-sprint, not even pausing to let the human (and robot) drama to take hold. I know Transformers movies aren’t exactly known for character development, but this is shallowness at a whole different level. It is hard to root for any of the humans except Mark Whalberg’s Cade Yeager and only because he was in the previous movie and we know him long enough to understand where he is coming from.
The movie also drops tid-bits of back-story here and there but never really follows on them. There was a whole back-story of Bumblebee revealed by Sir Anthony Hopkins’ Sir Edmund Burton that went nowhere. It was cool to see it, but afterwards I wondered why they even bothered with it.
The editing seems a bit off too. Sometime they’re good, like the car chase through the streets of London but in other scenes they felt abrupt. This contributes to my confusion when trying to follow the action which Michael Bay, in all his wisdom, decided to cram the action scenes with more action and explosions than I thought possible. Yes, I know this is a movie about gigantic sentient robots, but I think it would be really better if Bay tones down a bit for us to catch up with the story.
Transformers The Last Knight certainly satisfies the itch to see the beloved Autobots defeat the evil Decepticons once again. If you love your movie filled with explosions without going deep into the plot, then this movie is for you. Otherwise, wait for the Blu-rayDVD.