Reel Reviews: A transformation into something better

Optimus Prime is gone. The Humans are alone in their war with the Transformers

Optimus Prime is gone. The Humans are alone in their war with the Transformers. After being chosen by a magical talisman, the Last Knight, Cade Yeager (Mark Wahberg) discovers a cause for hope in the battle against the giant robots in Professor Vivian Wembley (Laura Haddock), who has access to Merlin’s magical staff. Yes, that Merlin.

With their magical doodad acquired and a little help from their old robot friends, maybe, just maybe, they can save the world.

We say, “Transformers: The Last Knight might be just different enough to be interesting.”

TAYLOR: I was surprised to find myself enjoying this latest installment of the Transformers franchise. We panned the last film in our review. It was nearly three hours long. Luckily, The Last Knight isn’t as long winded. It’s difficult for me to pinpoint what it is I liked more about The Last Knight than previous outings, but it felt more grown up, like everyone had stopped worrying about being flashy and clever, instead opting to tell a story.

HOWE: I can’t even remember the last Transformers installment, so going into this was like going into a fresh movie. To tell you the truth, The Last Knight wasn’t that bad. It wasn’t that great either, but it did keep me entertained for the entire movie. I also noticed the more grown up feel to it. Gone is the cheesy slow motion close up fighting or slow shots of Megan Fox, and they have replaced it with swearing. Really, swearing? In a kid’s movie about Hasbro toys? I’m not a prude — far from it, in fact — but they should have kept it clean for the younger audience.

TAYLOR: The swearing may have been part of what I liked about it, somehow making it more real. Oh, don’t get me wrong, there are still many terrific examples of terrible filmmaking. For instance, I think it’s really clear that this film was meant to be much longer. I counted three times where main characters went from one situation to the next without explaining how, because there used to be a scene where now there isn’t. It’s easy to blame the many editors of this film for that, but editors can only work with what they are given and allowed to keep in the film. Such is it that The Last Knight jumps around. It is disjointing, but don’t worry, you won’t have long to wait before you are reminded that your only watching a silly move about robots. Just because this film has is more believable than its predecessors due to taking itself more seriously doesn’t mean that we are likewise obligated to take it seriously.

HOWE: Like most Wahlberg movies, I don’t take them seriously. They are fun and entertaining, but that’s where I draw the line. Anthony Hopkins, on the other hand, should have know better. Or was it just Transformers: The Last Knight was too good a bumper payday to turn down?

Taylor gives Transformers: The Last Knight 2.5 fewer Bad Boys moments out of 5.

Howe gives it 2.5 talismans out of 5.

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