Rust and drone
When someone in Age Of Extinction carps about “crap sequels and remakes” in movies, you almost choke on the audacity. Next to fresh genre spins from Captain America, X-Men and Apes, Michael Bay’s Transfourquel is this summer’s franchise dead weight. Despite being in a prime position to reinvent – new cast, Dinobots – it merely trumpets its self-regard through a fug of relapsed Bay-isms. Extinct? It’s certainly getting old.
Mark Wahlberg spearheads the new team as struggling human Tinkerbell Chad Yeager, who finds Optimus in a run-down cinema and repairs him to defend humans from government conspiracies, aliens, Decepticons and, presumably, Decepticritics. Striking a self-serving ‘meta’ note with that set-up, and then angling for glory-by-association via echoes of Spielberg and Westerns, Bay paints himself as the saviour of the super-sized cinema ‘experience’. Age’s FX aim big, true – but its human elements are measly, its ideas small, its plot twists scrappy.
As for casting, Wahlberg is more measured than Shia La-blurt-out-every-line but he might as well have stayed at home for all the use he is in the destruct-o-vision climax. Nicola Peltz pouts as his daughter but Bay could have cast some hot-pants instead and spared us his grim excuses (the “Romeo And Juliet law”) for ogling on-screen teenagers. Stanley Tucci maintains some droll dignity as partner to Kelsey Grammer in the villainous use of magic metal ‘Transformium’, but the thud of same-old-same-ium drowns out any levity here. Ample extras include a toy re-enactment of the films. Spot the difference.