Bumblebee: Nathan's Movie Review
I have a question for Michael Bay - why wasn't every Transformers movie like this one? Instead of Bay's traditional 45 minutes of story and 2 hours of robot carnage, Bumblebee gave us a ton of heart and a surprising amount of emotion and maybe 30 minutes of robot action. That's not a negative, by the way. Sure, most people see Transformers for the action but there's only so much clanking the head can take. Bumblebee trades in the headache for a heartwarming film.
The film follows the Autobot Bumblebee as he is sent to Earth by Optimus Prime in an effort to recuperate and regroup following the War on Cybertron. Two Decepticons managed to track Bumblebee's signal to Earth, where they trick the US government into helping them find him. The only thing standing between the Decepticons and Bumblebee is 18-year-old Charlie, a girl who is working through her own personal tragedy. She finds Bumblebee in a car junkyard and takes him home in order to fix him up. As the two bond and become inseparable, the government and the Decepticons begin closing in on them.
The only thing wrong with this film is how little the writers paid attention to continuity. Bumblebee is a prequel, detailing how the Transformers came to Earth. There are a few sequences in the main series that defy events in this film. For instance, here it's said Bumblebee was sent to Earth by Optimus Prime in order to hide from the Decepticons and regroup their forces. Bumblebee landed in 1987. Well, in The Last Knight, it's revealed that Bumblebee helped the Allies in World War II. Also, in the first Transformers film, it's said that Bumblebee lost his voice box in a fight with Megatron and yet in this film, it's ripped out by Blitzwing. One could overlook these continuity issues if you consider Bumblebee a reboot of the series, however, Michael Bay is still listed as a producer so there's a bit of uncertainty there. Aside from that, this was a fantastic film.
Hailee Steinfeld is fast-becoming one of my favorite younger actresses. She's proven time and time again just how talented she is. Her first film role was the True Grit remake. That's quite a feat for a newcomer. 8 years later, she's been an acapella singer, a Shakespearean Juliet, and a special ops agent. Now, she's the first human to come in contact with an alien robotic species. Pretty impressive resume for a 22-year-old. John Cena was his usual tough-guy self, a Major in the Special Ops who thinks all Transformers are bad and should be eliminated. As little as he was seen, though, I wonder why they got a big name to play this character. In fact, Cena almost felt unnecessary to the story.
The story was well-written. You could tell a lot of heart was poured into this film and, if it weren't for the glaring continuity issues, this probably would have rejuvenated the Transformers series. Who knows, it probably still could. Continuity apparently isn't a big deal for money-makers. Look at the latest Pirates film.
In conclusion, I was impressed with Hailee and the story and would definitely go see this again. I give the film a 3.5 out of 4.
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