Transformers: Dark of the Moon isn’t the worst movie you’ll ever see, but it’s damned near close.  I’ve made no secret of my disdain for Michael Bay’s direction, although I give him credit for the first movie.  It was fun and took a lot of the good stuff from the cartoon.

The problem with the Transformers franchise is everything on the screen that’s not the Transformers.  Shia LaBeouf’s story just has never been that compelling.  Jettisoning Megan Fox was definitely and upgrade.  Holy shit, Rosie Huntington-Whitely is so goddamned hot, it’s worth the price of admission to go see her.  Look.

Compared to what she looks like in the movie, this picture makes her look ugly.  She is actually so hot, I couldn’t even remember half the dialogue while she was on the screen.

Bay can create imagery.  Mind-blowing imagery.  But I think his dialogue sucks donkey dick.  And I think his sense of humor sucks dead donkey dick.  I mean, almost every John Turturro scene is cringe-worthy and he’s a good actor.  Writer Ehren Kruger is credited for the script (he also wrote the second Transformers).

I sense, however, it was Bay’s ruthless adherence to streamlining everything that reduced all the dialogue to a little more than grunts.  This is a shame, because of the voice of Optimus Prime, Peter Cullen, lends such gravitas to every line of dialogue, you almost believe that at least the robots are in a good movie.  Leonard Nimoy does the voice of Sentinel Prime, which is kind of funny, because he also did the voice of Galvatron in the 1984 Transformers movie.

Anyhow, what’s happening with the Transformers seems important.  They are trying to save themselves and the Earth.  Sam (LaBeouf) is caught up in not having a job, worrying about his girlfriends and his annoying parents.  Who cares?  Halfway through the movie, all that falls aside anyway.  The humans actually seem like a distraction for what little plot exists.

Bay brings back the human soldier characters, who matter so little and get wedged into the conflict, it feels like an ad for the Army and Navy by the end of the film.  What was cool in the first movie was how the Transformers worked.  Their weird alien universe where machines lived on Energon.  Every sequel downplays this and adds elements to idiotic accents (although to be fair, most are from the cartoon) and really stupid “comedy” scenes.

Another problem is that the visuals are so over-the-top, so eye-exploding, that you almost can’t process what’s happening fast enough.  It reminded me of 90’s Image comics where redesigns and art overloaded every page, but the story was kind of like, “What?  What’s happening here?”

The opening of the movie is actually the best part.  Bay seamlessly merges historic footage with new footage as he explains about how the Transformers effected the Space Race in the 60’s.  But in a better movie, that would’ve somehow tied into the current storyline in an interesting way.  Instead, it becomes just more eye candy.

Should you go see Transformers?  Well, that’s kind of like asking should you watch a house burn down or should you watch a car accident?  You can and you will see something pretty amazing, but it won’t be a movie.  I saw this in 3D and regretted it.  Didn’t seem to help things.  I guess if you had a rowdy crowd of friends that understood the Transformers, it could be fun.  Personally, I just spent the whole movie with a WTF? look on my face.  And I’m the world’s biggest Transformers fan.  Despite the millions it took to make this, the cartoon is still better.

Geek moment: Bay betrays the Transformers characters at the end of the movie with what I felt was a really harsh scene.  Granted, I enjoyed the scenes of people exploding, but it just felt wrong at the end.  Too much. If you’re going to dumb down the dialogue, plot and comedy so that it really only appeals to a child, you ought to not make the ending so graphic. (The robots actually bled.)

I give Transformers: Dark of the Moon in 3D 3 out of 10 keggers.  Be drunk.  Be very drunk for this one.