I absolutely love Transformers. When I was 6 all I wanted was my very own Jazz and when I got one I didn’t put it down for ages. I probably still have it somewhere. They were a big part of my childhood TV watching, so when the first film was announced I was so excited to watch it. I have seen all the others since and for the most part I’ve loved them, the first one still being my favourite.
The current story is obviously one of impending doom, Earth has turned on the Autobots and they have been made illegal in most states, but with more and more Transformers appearing there is a task force whose job is to eliminate. Optimus Prime has gone and it’s not long before Earth is found to be days away from being destroyed by the evil Quintessa who is speeding to earth on the Autobots home planet of Cybertron with Optimus as her ally, whom she has placed under her control.
As with all movies there are 2 stories running in parallel. So while the government agencies are trying to figure out how to save the planet, we’re also learning about ‘The Last Knight’ and what our hero Mark Wahlberg (Yeager) is doing to help; and if he is actually ‘The Last Knight’ put on our earth to save us.
The idea of the Knights stems back to 484 AD when King Arthurs’ wizard Merlin forges an alliance with 12 Transformers who have hidden here on Earth. They give him a powerful staff from Cybertron and help him to defeat the Saxons. Oh yes, it’s historically accurate…
Cut to present day and we meet the love interest, Viviene. She’s a professor at Oxford who is in fact the last living descendant to Merlin: the only person who can find and use the staff to save the planet. With the help of Cogman (Anthony Hopkins) she is introduced to Yeager and together they must find the staff (which was stolen from Quintessa) to avoid being arrested and save the planet from being destroyed.
That is basically it. And they managed to drag that story out for 2 AND A HALF HOURS!
When a film gets to number 5 in the franchise you do start to question if they can actually find something more to write about, or is it a case of just squeezing every last bit of money out of fans and just focusing on really good SFX rather than a decent storyline. Some franchises can just keep going and going (Avengers anyone?); but some… What, they should have just given up when their original leading man decided he wasn’t going to be involved.
So which one is Transformers – The Last Knight…
Sadly I feel it’s the latter.
The Last Knight had a really slow start until you meet Hopkins character then it gets a little better before the action slows down again. It isn’t the best of the Transformers movies and despite all the visual effects and the stellar cast it didn’t live up to my expectations.
It’s not often I contemplate leaving a film in the middle, but during this one I nearly did. Wahlberg and Hopkins are brilliant (as they always are) but even they couldn’t make this awful story something worth spending the time watching.
It was far too long. It’s nowhere near as good as previous installments and there was far too much ‘fill’ time between battle scenes and action sequences. I actually struggled to stay awake during those ‘down’ times.
The final scene saving the world seemed to go on forever. It felt like I was watching a version that hadn’t actually finished being edited. There were bits that really didn’t add anything to the story and I think it would have benefitted from having about half an hour cut out of it.
All in all not a great film and that’s 2 ½ hours of my life I won’t get back!
The next instalment is a Bumblebee movie in 2018… with any luck that will be better!
TRANSFORMERS – THE LAST KNIGHT IS OUT NOW. CERTIFICATE 12A
Written by Jodie Brough