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PHOTOGRAPHY

TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN (Two-Disc Special Edition)

DVD Review by David Blackwell

 

DETAILS:  149 minutes, audio commentary, making of documentary, deleted/ alternate scenes, featurettes, Transformers Data Hub, music video, theatrical trailer

VIDEO:  2.40:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)

AUDIO:  English 5.1, French 5.1, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Surround

Subtitles:  English, French, Spanish

 

STUDIO:  Dreamworks Pictures/ Paramount Pictures

Theatrical RELEASE DATE:  6-24-2009

DVD RELEASE DATE:  10-20-2009

PLOT:   The Deceptions are after the fragments of the All-Spark to track down a machine that will produce energy to keep them alive.  Sam Witwicky tries to live a normal life by going to college only to be drawn into the war between the Autobots and Decepticons.   The leader of the Decepticons known as the Fallen wants to bring ruin to the world and bring Megatron back.

 

ANALYSIS:   I loved the first TRANSFORMERS, but the sequel- TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN- is a loud and sometime crack job type of film.  It’s the type of film that on one hand has more robots and the fights between them while having a plot that is even more threadbare than the first film and throwing character development out the window for screwball laughs (and obnoxious new Transformers).

 

First, we have the antics of Sam going to college and somehow ending up with a jerk who runs a conspiracy web site about the Transformers followed by college antics (and Bumblebee squirting coolant on a hot slutty chick).   Then we have the obnoxious Transformers like the Autobot twins who fight with each other (and talk jive) while a small Deception becomes attached to Mikaela (Megan Fox) like a dog.   Then a series of battles happen leading up to a loud climax.   TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN introduces characters and yet under use them to focus on comedy and flashy shots of Megan Fox (like Michael Bay is trying to tell us that he worships her like a goddess).   Jetfire is introduced only to serve the plot and move it forward.    I miss the Jetifre from the cartoons (it was the last Transformers figure I parted with years ago.  I know there will probably be a third film and I do hope they focus more on plot (and tone down the comedy).

 

On my second viewing (and first on DVD), the movie is a little more enjoyable since I have lived through and know of the bad parts in the film.  The action still does rock and Michael Bay loves his action.

 

 

SPECIAL FEATURES:

DVD Super Producer Charles De Lauzirika (the guy behind the DVD sets for BLADE RUNNER and the ALIEN films) has produced the extras for the two disc set.   DISC One has an audio commentary by Director Michael Bay and Writers Roberto Orci and  Alex Kurtzman.

 

The best extra is the 2 hour and 15 minute long THE HUMAN FACTOR: EXACTING REVENGE OF THE FALLEN which looks at the hurried writing process due to the Writer’s Strike interrupting it, the production of the film from shooting at White Sands and going on location in Egypt and Jordan (the King of Jordan is a big fan of the first TRANSFORMERS), the cooperation of the military in this production, the tight schedule that the visual effects had to be delivered in, post-production from editing and sound mixing, and finishing the film just minutes before the world premiere in Japan.  Michael Bay does give the finger to the critics (I’m a critic and yet I enjoy some of the things in Michael Bay films while thinking some other things could have been better).

 

A DAY WITH BAY: TOKYO chronicles the day of the premiere of the film with Michael Bay giving commentary on the events that were captured on film. 

25 YEARS OF TRANSFORMERS features interviews with people from Hasbro as they tell why the Transformers have lasted and praising the film’s design people for making the film’s robots easy to make as toys.

DECONSTRUCTING VISUAL BAYHEM has a look at key sequences in the film that were done in Pre-Viz animation.  An introduction by Michael Bay is followed by the Pre-Viz that comes along with audio commentary by Pre-Viz Supervisor Steve Yamamoto.

 

Rounding out the disc two extras are a Linkin Park music video, the theatrical trailer, three deleted/ extended scenes that were thankfully cut (more comedy stuff with the parents and one scene with Leo), and NEST: TRANSFORMERS DATA HUB which gives the viewer the chance to see conceptual artwork for twelve of the Transformers.  Also be on the look out for an Easter Egg that features Josh Duhamel falling into the sand during the filming of one scene.

 

FINAL ANALYSIS:  As long as you don’t focus on the shortfalls of the script, you will enjoy the action more.  The extras are top-notch by Charles De Lauzirika.

 

This DVD review is (c)10-22-2009 David Blackwell.  This cannot be reprinted without permission.  All Rights Reserved.  No vampires were harmed during the writing of this review.  Send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com