'Transformers: The Last Knight' review: Michael Bay's final outing a complete disaster
Transformers: The Last Knight
- Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Isabela Moner, Josh Duhamel, Anthony Hopkins, Laura Haddock, John Turturro
- Directed by: Michael Bay
- Written by: Ken Nolan, Art Marcum, Matthew Hollaway
- Duration: 149 minutes
Transformers: The Last Knight is an incomprehensible pile of scrap. Luckily, there’s an upside — you’ll forget every single stupid frame of this thing the moment you walk out of the theatre.
Full disclosure: We have no idea what the movie is about. It begins with what appears to be a nod to Monty Python as armies battle in England in the Dark Ages. The Knights of the Round Table turn up. Bodies are exploding everywhere, and men in armour are being blown off their horses in IMAX and 3D. (“Just a flesh wound!”)
Merlin himself chats with some Transformers at the mouth of a space ship that has landed on earth. Britons need help, says Merlin, and so the Transformers step into ye olde medieval fray.
WTF? say viewers, but no one is listening.
Now it’s 1,600 years later, and Transformers keep landing on earth. Humans and Transformers are at war. Some children run into a prohibited holding pen and mix it up with renegade Transformers. Cade Yeager (Mark Wahlberg) is there, but we couldn’t say why. He’s defending the Transformers, maybe? That could be it. One of the big machines gives him a magical medallion, which he’ll need for protection.
Meanwhile, back on the planet Cybertron, Optimus Prime is trying to find his creator. And bad things have happened to his home.
Meanwhile, over in an English castle, Sir Anthony Hopkins turns up with a robotic butler called Cogman. But then actress Laura Haddock appears, playing polo one minute and lecturing about King Arthur at Oxford the next.
Meanwhile, somewhere in one of the Dakotas, all the familiar good Transformers hide out at a junk yard with Cade Yeager. There are baby dinosaur Transformers!!
Meanwhile, over in Namibia, Northern Chile and Jordan, strange horn-like spacecraft are sticking up out of the earth.
Meanwhile, in Washington, D.C., officials are negotiating with Megatron to free all the evil Transformers so they can lead the good guys to the weapon. Which weapon?
Uhh — sorry, can’t remember.
Anyway, here are Mohawk, Berserker, Dreadbot, Onslaught and all the bad guys. Things transform! Stuff blows up!
There are drone-like objects flying around shooting at the good guys!
Meanwhile, over in Havana, John Turturro talks on the phone.
Later, Mark Wahlberg and Sir Anthony Hopkins are in a scene together with a WWI tank Transformer. Hopkins says, “What a bitchin’ car she is!" at which point we knew it was all a bad dream and soon we would wake up.
So: Turns out all the geniuses, important generals, inventors and religious leaders who ever lived were part of a secret society devoted to keeping the secret of Transformers here on earth. There’s even a scene with Transformers beating up Nazis.
The descendants of Merlin are involved. So is Stonehenge.
Meanwhile, a whole lot of things are happening on a submarine. Anthony Hopkins has to tell the Prime Minister of England to shut up. There’s another space ship under the water! Not to mention Merlin’s tomb.
Pretty sure we were crying in our seat by this time, clutching the arm rests and daubing our eyes with popcorn. Aerial dogfights! Battling robots! Brotherhood!
IT. JUST. WON’T. STOP.
Turns out the world is ending! Not a moment too soon.
Pretty much everything that’s wrong with Hollywood — wretched excess, lousy storytelling, lack of diversity, sexism, hubris, lad humour, overkill special effects and CGI where the plot should be — can be summed up in two words: Michael Bay.
But that’s a story for another day.