i wish my bike was an autobot... Transformers: The Movie (1986)

When it comes to Transformers there's only one film that really matters and that's the 1986 animated feature.
Long before Michael Bay decided to use these alien transport morphing killing machines as his vehicle to prove how dumb he thinks the average movie goer is, there was this flick... which kinda tried to prove the same thing.
Now don't get me wrong, the film is fun for all of the nostalgia factor it rises in me but with the eyes of a now much older Kris the film certainly hasn't aged well.

Watching the film now has you looking for things within it that as a young lad you never really paid too much attention to. Things like musical choices, voice acting, pacing, basic plot development, coherence, sanity... these are not the things i was looking for when i first saw this as a child. I was more distracted by all the pretty colours, explosions, and transforming things.

The film is about this artificial planet called Unicron voiced by Orson fucking Welles that goes around eating planets for some unkown senseless reason. Almost as senseless as having the once revered film auteur voice a floating planet that looks like some orifice out of a Cronenberg film and then, later in post, alter his voice so much that you can't even tell who is voicing the monstrosity. Now it's bad enough Orson's last note was as ridiculous as being a voice actor in an epic toy commercial but to have your voice altered to beyond any recoginition, well that's gotta hurt.
Orson Welles doesn't fuck around

I mean, what were they thinking? Why even get these big name actors to come on board if you're just gonna alter their voices to the point that you can't even tell if it's human beings voicing these things? Other big names include Judd Nelson, Robert Stack, Eric Idle and Leonard Nimoy all of whose voices are barely recognizable. I found myself eagerly awating the credits to find out who was who. Not necessarily A list actors but i was still surprised by the cast.

The soundtrack... is either the most god awful thing i've ever heard or i want to have its babies. it's really hard to say. It's all 80's power rock ballads that really just rock. It sounds like Styx, Journey, and REO Speedwagon are having sex with you... basically. On one end, i kinda like it, but on the other end it hurts.
What takes away from the music is that a power ballad plays whenever there's an action sequence and when the majority of the film is in action sequences it can get tiring. The songs are really out of place for the sequences, the songs themselves evoking emotions quite contridicatary of what's going on.
One particular action sequence i did find quite enjoyable was one between a group of Autobots and some sort of junk yard transformers set to the music of Weird Al Yankovic's "Dare To Be Stupid".
Don't stop believing...

What i did like about this movie is that the good guys got their asses handed to them. Hard.
Within the first 20 minutes Optimus Prime gets taken out, and is then replaced by Ultra Magnus who 20 mintues later gets destroyed... it's kinda the best.
And what happens to the bad guys? Well Orson Welles turns Megatron into Leonard Nimoy.

I mean later on Judd Nelson jumps in there and uses the matrix to stop Spock and Charles Foster Kane, with the help of Eric Idle but still...the good guys get completely embarrassed in this flick.
And it had a greater effect on me now than it did when i was a kid.
So when comparing this incoherent wreck to that of the new incoherent misogynistic sexist wrecks that Mr. Bay is churning out, i'd rather take this mess. At least the human characters are barely there to make me wanna kill myself knowing that we're of the same species.

anyways, i don't really recommend watching it... or particularly reading this review for that matter.
Screw Michael Bay, screw Unicron, screw Megan Fox, screw Unsolved Mysteries, and last but not least screw you... Shia.
that's right shia



the coelacanth said...

this movie blows. g.i. joe: the movie is where it's at. however, this may be the dopest thing ever (especially at the 20 second mark): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1kyVOJSoFk&feature=PlayList&p=563439B025DC4133&playnext=1&playnext_from=PL&index=52

Mr. Scratch said...

Yes! Agree completely, G.I. Joe: The movie is far superior...though Serpentor blows a fat one.