I've been thinking about how I was going to start this review off for a few days now. I was looking for a single sentence that properly captured my thoughts on this script in such a way so as to leave you with no doubt just how this treatment touched me -- personally touched me -- just like your alcoholic, pedophilic uncle liked to touch you. Below is that sentence:
The script to the Michael Bay directed Transformers Movie is a half-aborted monster that bares no likeness at all to the previous incarnations of its namesake, and still has the clothes-hanger sticking out of its mongoloid skull in a vile mockery of the brilliance that it could have (and should have) been.
Pretty much everything that could be wrong IS wrong with this script (dated 2/28/2006 and subtitled "Prime Directive"). I'll get into all of this in a bit, but just as an overview I'll mention that the characters' personalities don't match their namesakes; the line "more than meets the eye" is cheesily overused to gut-punchingly cringing results; the logic of the world created within the script is shat upon quite regularly within the confines of the story itself; the comedy "beats" are horrible and made me open my mouth not in laughter, but in gasping shame; and in the mighty tradition of Masters of the Universe, the focus of most of the film is NOT on the larger-than-life 1980s heroes based on toys (whom we WANT to see more of), instead the spotlight of the story is on the (wussy) human boy who's just trying to score some tail by way of the too-hot-for-him chick who gets tangled up in the unforgiving narrative with him (both of whom we want to see LESS of).
Before I really get into this typed trainwreck of a story, I want to cover the travesty that is the character "designs" being used in this movie. Yes, Prime is now a lame-looking 18 wheeler with flames painted on his side; Megatron is the bastard child of an Evangelion and the Guyver, dipped in mercury; Starscream looks like he's half monkey in robot mode; and Soundwave is an "anorexic," flattened robot with a mouth... Not to mention that the leaked photos and production designs of Prime's and Bumblebee's robot forms look like Bionicle rejects, leaving no trace of their vehicle identities in their transformation. Every bit of information that is leaked about this movie seems to prove that NOBODY involved knew jack shit about the transformers before they came aboard this project. But I digress.
Back to the script (which I've heard is either just a 1st draft, or the actual shooting script... I have no idea [nor do I truly care] which it is seeing that all the leaked photos, set visits and listings on the IMDB show that most, if not all, of what's in this treatment is in the actual movie). It is bad. Bad, terrible, horrible, abhorrent, appalling, frightful, dreadful, atrocious, repulsive, obnoxious and offensive. Pick your synonym. Even if the movie wasn't called "Transformers" and the characters weren't named "Optimus Prime," "Starscream," and "Megatron" this movie would still be bad. The dialogue is as cliche as it gets. The action (as written in the 112 page draft I read) was non-exciting and far from awe-inspiring. This is most definitely NOT what millions of people have waited years and years, since their childhood, to see.
On top of the bad, generic shit that they poured all over this script like a vial of monkey piss, they altered everything about the original Transformers storyline that made it so fun. The Transformers aren't here by accident anymore and there's no Cybertron (it was apparently destroyed and we never even get to see a glimpse of it even in flashback). On top of that, none of the original character interactions were left intact either: Megatron and Starscream aren't bitter rivals in this universe; Bumblebee is supposed to be like Snake Eyes from G.I. Joe now (all mute and not the chatterbox that he was known to be); and for whatever reason they thought it was necessary, Prime and Megatron are brothers... I don't know if that means that they were both squatted out by the same mommy-machine or just "brothers in arms," but it's retarded. Why they didn't bring Arcee into the picture and make Prime and Megs fight over her sweet, pink, angular ass instead I'll never know.
Let me cover the (wafer thin) plot now: Spike Witwicky... Er, sorry, I meant SAM Witwicky is a nerdy loser with only an even lamer fucktard as his only friend. Sam wants a car so that he can finally get some poontang (like there is any way that a simple car will solve all of his many many Earthly problems). Sam's dad takes him to an AUTO JUNK YARD (whatta guy!), and they end up buying a beat up Camero that seems to have a personality of its own. Then, like somebody stated on one of the message boards I visit, the next 30 pages read like a bad Herbie movie... Yes, even worse than the Firecrotch Lohan one. The Camero (Bumblebee in disguise, shhhhh!) helps Sam get on the good side of the school slut (awwwww, melts your heart), and eventually saves Sam from the evil Transformer Brawl (not a tank Combaticon like in the cartoon, but a police car for whatever reason) who wants Sam's great-grandfather's eye-glasses... Not making this shit up.
Yes, big robots start making their appearance around this time, but it still doesn't get exciting. A Decepticon helicopter and Skorponok (Skorponok?!? What the hell?) attack a US army base in the Middle East, and at least on paper it read like Jane Austin preparing for bed (to be fair, if there's one thing Bay can do it's make things explode pretty, so this part of the finished film should at least be interesting... if I ever go to see it... which I probably won't). Then Soundwave (a four-foot tall, "anorexic" robot with a mouth [no face plate]) hacks the Pentagon computers from Air Force One (why do it on the most guarded plane in the world at 30,000 feet?... Why not?), and soon a HILARIOUS human cryptologist/hacker couple (one paranoid white woman and one "funny," fat, black man) come into play, and warn the government that outer space robots are attacking.... That's all they do in the whole script really, yet they're written into every bit of space that they can be fit into because, well, "funny," fat, black man = comedy GOLD! GOLD I say!
Then Optimus Prime comes down from the heavens with his posse of Ironhide, Jazz, and Ratchet. But they're not the OP and crew that we all know and love. OP is really kind of a dick (who forsakes teammates when they could EASILY have been rescued from stupid humans), Ironhide is apparently brain damaged, and Jazz is a shitty American wannabe Porsche. Well, they show up and team up with mute Bumblebee to find Sam's ancestor's glasses. Then they get them. The glasses lead them to the "energon cube" (aka the BIGGEST MCGUFFIN DEVICE EVER WRITTEN INTO FILM) which is not a source of energy, but a mini Borg ship that gives anything with electronics in it life... And the ability to transform into a humanoid creature... No, this does not really pay off at all during the course of this story. It just is.
Anyway, at the EXACT SAME TIME that the Autobots ("AUTOnomous roBOTS") track down the energon cube, the Decepticons find it as well because the writers are hacks. The cube is inside Hoover Dam, and so is *gasp* the eye-gougingly bad design known as "Megatron." Megatron is frozen, but he soon thaws (it's not worth it to explain this shit any more than I already am, trust me), and meets up with the rest of the Decepticons (Starscream, Devastator [who is not an amalgam of Constructicons but simply a tank], Brawl, Soundwave, and some other second fiddle characters that never made an impression on me in the original cartoon). The Decepticons then fight the Autobots over the cube, and everything that you thought would happen from the very beginning comes to pass: The Autobots win and the Decepticons are defeated (all dead except for Starscream who got away). Yes, they killed Megatron at the end of the movie... Actually SAM kills him.... Yes, I know. I FUCKING know. What a waste of an hour to read this thing.
Now to talk randomly about some of the things that sucked in this script beyond the basic plot (and there are a LOT):
- I just wanted to point out again the fact that they use the line "more than meets the eye" like 25 times through out the course of this thing.
- Sam's potential meat-socket is no Carly, but is instead a hoodlum who likes to steal cars (or at least help those that do).
- Okay, yeah, Bumblebee's voice box was damaged years ago in a battle and he can't talk now... He's a fucking ROBOT. All he needs is a repair or a new voice box! The Autobots even have a medic/mechanic on their side. Just fix the bastard!
- Jesus H. Christ... the bad jokes.... Not only are they dumb and unfunny, but they hurt the story (well, what little of it there was that didn't outright suck). Take the scene where Prime first appears on Earth. He immediately scans the internet and downloads all of the information catalogued there, and he then knows EVERYTHING about the planet -- like what kind of beings Sam and his bitch are, and where they're currently located (i.e. AMERICA). Well, despite this, Prime sees that there are more Chinese people on the planet than anybody else, so he speaks to Sam in Chinese.... *cricket noises*.... This is built up to be one of the most GUT-BUSTINGLY funny scenes in the flick. Oh lordy, lordy, lordy... Please, God, kill these writers so they don't write any more "movies," or multiply in numbers.
Other instances of hiLARious comedy moments are: Bumblebee pees oil on John Turturro's character and then steals his pants (NOT MAKING THIS CRAP UP); any of Sam and his re-re friend's dialogue when they're together; and the worst piece of dialogue in the entire 112 pages where in Sam and the girl... You know what, placing it in context won't help it any. Here's the conversation:
-- Sam: "Is the cube okay?"
-- Chick: "Yes! It's wearing it's [sic] seatbelt!"
They look at each other oddly (guffaw!!!)
-- Sam: "Wow, we just sounded like parents." (HA HA HA!!! HA HA HA HA HA!!! OH MY GOD YES, THAT'S THE FUNNIEST FUCING... BWA HA HA HASHDHAHA!!!!!!!11111one11 URINATEPANTS!!11111)
If these hacks seriously HAD to put in a certain amount of comedy in this movie (or ANY action movie for that matter) why don't they just hire somebody like Seanbaby to punch up the humor? You know, somebody who's actually FUNNY and knows the source material. Oh, who am I kidding, the writers of this script have got to be getting so much ass at all the big Hollywood parties they go to. They are SO GODDAMN WITTY and sharp and NOT fags. Dirty, dirty butt pirates.
Masters of the Universe, Catwoman, Street Fighter, League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Godzilla, Super Mario Brothers.... And now Transformers. The raping of my childhood is now complete.
Wow, impressive! It appears that robots are not the only beings capable of causing tremendous pain to the fleshies known as hu-mans. Yes, it turns out that hu-mans themselves can create literature just as agonizing as any physical punishment a robot could dish out.
READ this script, hu-mans. Read it and fear. Your species is capable of such torture that we robots thought was beyond the limits of good taste. This Transformers Movie does indeed give robots a bad reputation (for being pussies), but the upshot is that it will hurt you. Yesssss, it will hurt you, worse than getting cut by my knife.