7.09.2009

Micheal Bay Hates Me

I was inspired to rant, as I so often am, by a post on a message board I frequent. To get the full jist of what was discussed, go to this post on the forums for The Gentleman's Guide To Midnight Cinema over at Popsyndicate.com. My post stands on it's own, well enough, though, so I wanted to preserve it on ye olde blog.

Every time I hear that if you didn't like Transformers, it's because you didn't grow up with the cartoon and toys, I want to stab the person in the face. I am a devout and I mean devout fan of the original cartoon. These were shows written most likely by interns and college kids for scale at best that had animation that was churned out from bottom dollar animation farms that often times got the coloring wrong on the robots. This lead to Starscream's voice coming out of Thundercracker's body on more than a few occasions. Even under those conditions, the storytelling in those old shows was leaps and bounds beyond the word vomit that was spewed forth for the first Bay film. They were simple stories of good versus evil, sure, but they were honest to god stories with characters and plot.

Transformers repulsed me because it was painfully obvious that Bay knew nothing and cared nothing about the original characters. No effort was made to tell anything resembling a story and the robots were treated as window dressing instead of actual characters. On top of that, the robots looked like garbage. Actually, the first time I saw one of Bay's bots, I said it looked like someone vomited up a Radio Shack. Bay's excuse was that the screen tests they did with boxy bots that mirrored the old cartoon looked too fake. I call severe bull(*&^ to you, sir. A college kid did a CG short of a new Beetle transforming into a robot and that looked amazing 8 years ago. Several years and many millions of dollars later, Bay can't manage to come up with something even remotely close.

Sammy made my anti-"It's a summer movie" argument, so I'll leave it at that, but to agree. "It's a summer movie" and "it's for kids" is not a free pass to make films with no soul. Just ask Jaws and any Pixar film. All HUGE blockbusters. All with wonderful creativity behind them. Chris made the argument that we need Michael Bay and I disagree. He reaffirms the idea that you don't need creativity to make a blockbuster film. What we need is more studios like Pixar that seem to understand how to make blockbuster films of superior quality. We need more directors like Sam Raimi and Jon Faveraux that prove you can give fan service without alienating new viewers and make a popcorn film with an intelligent story. Micheal Bay's idiot fan boys will eventually tire of his drivel and stop going to see it, by which time everyone will be in full swing of trying to emulate his success. When that happens, the film industry will implode, again, and everyone is fucked.

Another example of using name recognition to cash in on fan boy nostalgia? GI Joe. I was excited at the idea of this movie. I loved the cartoon and toys and figured it would be something that would easily translate to live action, given it's general basis in reality (most of the early toys were genuine military equipment and prototypes of same). Then I watched the trailer and I couldn't tell anyone apart. As fast as everything moved and because they are all wearing the exact same outfit, none of the characters had any kind of identity. It's funny because the key point to GI Joe's appeal was that each character dressed in a manner that reflected their station, personality and role in the team. It's the same complaint I had about X-men when that come out, but Singer managed to overcome it. I don't feel that GI Joe will fair as well.

Basically, Micheal Bay and his ilk make me feel like Hollywood hates me, which makes me not want to see movies in theaters. Explain to me how that is good for the industry?

5 comments:

  1. I loved transformers growing up, I was the right age and embraced it completely and had tons of the toys. I even remember eating far too many boxes of (I believe) cookie crisp cereal for the upc's for a limited edition transformer. With that in mind, the new movies suck. Granted yes, it's a "summer blockbuster" but in my opinion that's just an excuse to spend a lot of money to film a lot of explosions and special effects and not worry about making a quality movie. Effects adn explosions are great but they don't make a movie.

    The new Transformers have no soul, they have no spirit, the human acting is cliche and predictable and the plots... well, what plots?

    I'm with you Eskimo

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  2. high five, brother. I read a comment on the Ebert stuff that said "When I tell people I don't like these movies, they look at me like I am an alien." That is pretty accurate for me, too.

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  3. I'm right there with you Naked Eskimo. I saw the trailers for GI Joe and felt pure disappointment. All the characters will be faceless drones and there will be an overload of explosions. I'm on my way to actively hating explosions and flashy special effects. Give me something to love, Hollywood. Not just trash.

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  4. i sat the other night almost arguing with someone who loves him some transformers and is pumped about g.i. joe

    i only could say "but the armor!" in my defense though haha

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  5. The armor and they all look like children. It just bugs me.

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