The fourth in the mega-successful movie franchise, this series has made a fortune for its producers. Given it advertises a toy line while telling its highly stylised comic strip tale, it’s doubly rewarding for all involved. Never pretending to be high art, it’s a nonsensical parlour ride for those firmly leaving their brains at the door.
Cade (Mark Wahlberg) is a mechanic eking out a living. Raising his teenage daughter Tessa (Nicola Peltz), he is intrigued when he discovers an abandoned truck. Little does he know it contains Optimus Prime – leader of the heroic Autobots.
When powerful politicians led by Harold Attinger (Kelsey Grammer) attempt to unlock their secrets, all hell breaks loose. With Earth once again under threat of a robotic apocalypse, it’s up to Optimus and his new human friends to save the day before times runs out.
It would be easy dismissing the latest Transformers as bubble-gum rubbish. Way too long, riddled with plot holes and risible performances, similar films would be quickly sent to the scrap heap. It is trashy but you don’t see these films for an engaging story. What this entry has, is an abundance of dazzling action and an effort in creating something new. Series Director Michael Bay knows the score by now as he handles the explosive spectacle with ease. Managing to find the right mix of humour and tension, he ensures Transformers: Age of Extinction remains entertaining.
Not much can be said about the acting although Wahlberg equips himself well. His virtuous hero versus Grammer’s oily villain provides some relief against the CGI excess surrounding them. Thankfully the special effects don’t descend into a mess, enabling the viewer to see the creativity in the action sequences. Negating these gains is a near three hour run-time, making viewing an endurance test. Less is usually far more although Bay deserves credit for his uncompromising way in conjuring high-octane hokum.
Transformers: Age of Extinction is generally entertaining silliness for mass consumption. A form of cinematic fast-food, it delivers the expected product with gusto and should please those who like marvelling at robotic fisticuffs.
Reviewed by Patrick Moore
Rating out of 10: 6