Transformers the Movie: Review

I happen to be a member of Passagen and sometimes they grant free movie tickets to film previews (sorry, only in Sweden), this time I got to see the upcoming Transformers with some friends.

Transformers have much in common with Japanese anime. In fact the series are based on Hasbro’s toy line with the same name, which in turn is based on Japanese Diaclone toys of the 1980’s. They already featured the concept of humanoid machines transforming (morphing) into a disguisable form.

The story around the Transformers conflict between the toys’ backstory, the Marvel comics (in which Spiderman battles Transformers) and the animated series, of which the first generation in 1984 became the most popular and is the version which outlived the other stories. However, the core ingredients are present in each: The Autobots ruled peacefully over planet Cybertron until the Decepticons (also Transformers) started a war. Leader of the Autobot forces is Optimus Prime who’s nemesis lies in the Decepticon leader Megatron. For some reason, differing between the stories, the humanoid robots come to planet Earth to battle for supremacy. Transformers made it to UK-comic books, a number of generations of animated series, Japanese manga and anime too; still, the 1984-1992 animated series is regarded as the true Transformers story.

Transformers the Movie (2007) Has all things necessary to please both fans and uninitiated alike.

Transformers can almost be described as a blend of Terminator and The Fast and the Furious though, Transformers came first.

Steven Spielberg is among the executive producers and that says a lot, but more important is that the plot is here: EarthOptimus Prime has become the battle-ground and the fate of the planet, no the galaxy, lies in the hands of a teenager named Sam Witwicky. His great great-something grandfather was an explorer and encountered Megatron at the North Pole; fortunately, he was deep-frozen. Somehow, grandfather Witwicky managed to get the coordinates of something extremely powerful imprinted on his glasses, something either Autobots or Decepticons must have in order to erradicate the other and end the war.

The special effects are impressing; anime style with fight scenes à la The Matrix. The lightning effects would make any Star Wars movie look like cheap flash-light tricks and the transforming animations are beautiful. It is a good thing the story does not grow too deep, it keeps the humor and simplicity of the original animated series many fans remember from their childhood. The movie is worth-while seeing, but fans get the most out of it as always. However, those that are into anime will find themselves at home too. In keeping with the story, the acting is simple and is perfectly adapted to the Transformer’s style; thus, adding greatly to the feeling of the film.

Official movie site: http://www.transformersmovie.com/

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