Have you ever watched a montage of “coolest this,” or “funniest that?” Why did you do it? Because it gave you some sort of emotional reaction. To me, Michael Bay’s Transformers is the cool montage. I don’t buy a ticket to Transformers looking for filmmaking genius, deep emotions, or even a plausible story. When I buy a ticket to Transformers, I want to see cars transform into robots that could never shrink into the size of a car. I want explosions and destruction and robot fights.
“Good movies” have their place. Their place is everywhere because filmmaking is an amazing medium. In the same breath, filmmaking is a great medium because you can use it to tell the story of Transformers from the planet Cybertron.
Movies like Transformers need to exist. I don’t think Michael Bay sits in his chair deeply saddened that Transformers didn’t get nominated for Best Picture, Screenplay, Actor, or anything else. I’m sure he loves the cash. But I’m also pretty sure he enjoys his ridiculously insane movies that make no sense. The plot is there because no one is going to pay for a ticket to see ONLY a digital robot fight. But people want to see that robot fight. I want to sit in that seat as my brain wonders what the hell it’s processing. I want to hear Optimus Prime’s power, I want to see Decepticons and Autobots fight it out.
I love Transformers. I will never tell you it’s better than your beloved films because it isn’t. It’s just different. Transformers is a decorated cake. It looks wonderful, but the cake under the fondant isn’t too great. Great films are the cakes from the bakers using their years of experience and love to give you a magical experience. But hell, sometimes you want to be amazed by the spinning, glow-in-the-dark spaceship cake.
Don’t hate on Transformers too hard, it knows it isn’t a masterpiece, nor does it care.