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This latest Transformers film gives the audience a lot to think about, if you are open-minded and allow yourself to be challenged by the film. I was, for example, wondering how many angels would fit on Mark Wahlberg’s biceps, and whether if the answer is “infinite” that would mean that on his other biceps there would be none, them being exhausted on the first arm, a paradoxon in the making that could bring down civilisation as we know it (“knew it” before Michael Bay started eroding it step by step)! I was also wondering whether any man who has a penis would suffer from said penis falling off immediately if he drinks a urine-based “beeralike” drink that comes in a bottle that happens to have the same blue colour as the “substitute liquid” used in tampon commercials. Or – other questions that – whether it would not be easier to introduce (maybe by trade union agreement with script writers) an internationally standardised sentence in every movie henceforth, along the lines of “let us change our location to [insert completely random completely new location that has nothing to do with previous location or plot] where [include main sponsor here] is located, because we always had all our facilities there in case we destroyed the previous city with which we had a production location deal and now everyody is after us here so it makes a lot of sense to go there. They also have some nice shots of olympic facilities prepared, just in case we want to use sports venues in our plot to take over mankind.”

If you ever lived in China, you identify 20 cases where the audience’s intelligence is insulted with what can only be described as “spray-shit in your face” product placement, apparently assuming that a Chinese audience is too stupid to recognise product placement in the embedded way it is done in real films (as opposed to these freakish creatures out of the Transformers assembly line). Fortunately, Transformers is almost an equal opportunity offender, and the American products on display are also shoved into their idiot audience’s face like a tampon up a boxer’s bleeding nose (second tampon reference today! What does that say about me and / or the film?).

It is very good to see the likes of Wahlberg and Tucci have their children’s and grandchildren’s university tuition paid through Michael Bay’s pockets. If I was them, I would do exactly the same, and I would wear a golden-teethed smile next time other people go to awards ceremonies. Michael Caine has set a standard here, and who are we to question his choices. I am almost certain neither Tucci nor Wahlberg have seen the finished film either. Unless it’s in their contract, that is.

One thing always has to be repeated about these Transformers movies: apart from all the other flaws, I am absolutely stunned how one can possibly throw so much money at the screen and produce such utterly utterly boring output?? The action in these films is (oddly enough: consistently) so poorly and indifferently directed and edited that the only thing you can do once a battle (usually epic) commences is go to the fridge (home option) or the cinema concessions counter and get beer, preferably plenty of it. Drink it where you are, put another bottle in the fridge (home) or go to the toilet (cinema and / or home) , then slowly move back towards the screen, hoping that the (epic!) battle is nearing its finale. Don’t worry though if you forgot some beer or popcorn to take with you for your friends (you know it’s just an academic exercise: IF you have friends, you would not take them to Transformers films… IF there are people with you at a Transformers screening, they are not your friends. IF friends ask you to join them see Transformers – run!) or did not spend enough time on the loo, there will be another battle, it will be epic, so you will have time to catch up with whatever you forget last time.

One constantly curious element that has to do with this boredom is the flat voices of all those transformer-roboty-thingies. If those fighting for the … whatever … fate of mankind… sound like generated from a tamagochi with a weak battery, how can they convey drama?

This is all stuff that is independent of the fact that, of course, I am not the target group, because I am not an 8 year old boy who does not know the difference between birds and bees yet and hence likes to twist parts out of a robot toy instead of making some sense out of his existence.  Still: I was that kid one time, and I enjoyed films and tv shows that were fun and dynamic and well played and in which I knew what was at stake. With Transformers, everything is always at stake, nothing makes any sense, but if you drink mineral water with green logo or beer-coloured urine  with blue logo, everything will be … not sure, everything will make it your fault that there will be another part of the franchise.

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