June 26, 2014 at 5:54 pm

Tom Long

Review: Robots, explosions, repeat ... 'Transformers' grows tiresome

Optimus Prime fights alien robots in 'Transformers: Age of Extinction.' (Industrial Light & Magic / Paramount)

Do you ever think to yourself, gee, I wish someone would beat on my skull with a hammer today?

If so, you're in luck. “Transformers: Age of Extinction” will be in theaters everywhere starting Thursday night. As self-destructive cinematic experiences go, it can't be beat.

As a movie, though, it is absolute garbage. Repetitive beyond belief, soulless and shamelessly, endlessly chaotic.

This is, of course, the “Transformers” tradition, although the franchise's last installment showed some hope. But here director Michael Bay has elected to get back to basics — in other words, banging on audience skulls.

The story: Good outer space robots are now in hiding and the CIA (why the CIA?) is hunting them down with the help of a bad outer space robot who probably has a name, but who cares?

In Texas, a down-on-his-luck inventor named Cade Yeager (Mark Wahlberg) buys a beat-up semi truck and discovers it's actually the damaged Optimus Prime (biggest of the good robots). Despite the protestations of his beautiful teen daughter (Nicola Peltz), he nurses it back to health.

Which is when the bad CIA guys show up, leading to endless battles and explosions.

Prime gets what few surviving good robots exist back together, they team up with Yeager, daughter and a superfluous boyfriend (Jack Reynor), and all set out to do battle with government types, scientists, outer space robots and their clones. Explosions, explosions, junkyards battling, explosions. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

The film was shot partly in Detroit, but mainly it's Chicago and Hong Kong that get torn to shreds over the next two hours and 45 minutes.

Seriously, the next movie should just be called “Transformers: Hammer to the Skull.”

People would still go. They might even pay extra.

'Transformers: Age of Extinction'


Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, language and brief innuendo. Running time: 165 minutes


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