Jump to content


Photo

Transformers 2


  • Please log in to reply
15 replies to this topic

#1 Jonathan Bowerbank

Jonathan Bowerbank
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 2815 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 29 June 2009 - 11:51 PM

Really, nobody has said anything yet?

Saw it yesterday...almost completely intolerable and distasteful. Just when I was starting to respect Bay for the first film (I was even a fan of some of his stylistic choices in past years) but this one is just bad.

About 75% of the film is filled with annoying banter between the completely uninteresting human characters (Megan Fox excluded), and the Transformers as characters themselves is nearly completely obliterated from the plot. There's a great story in there, having to do with the Transformers history on the planet Earth...but it takes backseat to all the personal drama going inside each individual human's head, that honestly, I didn't give 2 bits about.

And all the racial stuff has already been widely covered in other critics reviews.

All of that aside, the Transformer battles were pretty sweet and a lot of stuff blew up. Ben Seresin's work was fine. From the pacing of the film and how much content there was, it looks like he had to move fast, so everything was quite simple. And the amount of 2nd unit work probably took up more than half the film, so I can't really pinpoint who's work was whos.
  • 0

#2 monday sunnlinn

monday sunnlinn
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 86 posts
  • Other
  • Boston

Posted 30 June 2009 - 09:58 AM

I think everyone is still trying to figure out if they liked it or not... I am...
My problem was I couldn't actually see it because it was so out of focus in the theatre I saw it in...plus it skipped the end of the scene...well I won't go any further, it would be a spoiler...
Astonishingly, it's already made almost 400 million worldwide...

I enjoyed the first one so much, I was literally sweating, but then that was in Florida and the theatre was literally packed full...
  • 0

#3 James Compton

James Compton
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 311 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 30 June 2009 - 12:45 PM

Okay. I liked it because the IMAX forest fight scene and the IMAX desert segment were REALLY GOOD. You could actually see all of the fight moves. In the first film, they were out of frame and
could only be "pereceived". This time, it was all there. I was glad to see Optimus finally whoop some A#@$ ! Soundwave was ALL WRONG. I mean damn, how difficult was it to slap a vocoder on his voice. The first ten minutes of the movie in Shanghai was more like G.I JOE than the upmcoming JOE movie is going to be. The 4K CGI was nice. Very photorealistic at times ( I know they're giant robots from space). Jetfire was cool, I like how they threw in the spacebridge and the matrix.

There was WAAY too much human dialog. The Twins got annoying REAL FAST. Kill them off and
bring back JAZZ <_< . Overall I really like it. The IMAX scenes had that wonderful 'bigness' on 35mm. I'll be watching the IMAX version this weekend. There was so much going on, I'll have to see it again.
  • 0

#4 Jayson Crothers

Jayson Crothers
  • Sustaining Members
  • 351 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, CA

Posted 30 June 2009 - 01:43 PM

Did anyone else notice the excessive number of shots where you can clearly see the shadow of the camera operator? There's a couple of shots where you can clearly make out the shadow of the onboard monitor falling across the actors - and in the sequence at the back of the airplane (where instructions are being given about how to operate a parachute) you can see the shadow of the operator drifting back and forth across the two actors for half the scene - I saw it with some friends who have nothing to do with the film industry and they turned to me during the scene and asked if "that annoying shadow" was the camera.

I'm trying to figure out, when you have that much money and that much time, why you wouldn't do another take WITHOUT the shadow of the crew falling on your talent.
  • 0

#5 Adrian Sierkowski

Adrian Sierkowski
  • Sustaining Members
  • 7118 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles, Ca

Posted 30 June 2009 - 02:21 PM

I'd bet it has less to do with money and more with time. I saw it in the First Transformers movie, I recall (not exactly where I saw it, but it was there) and there is a vivid example also in Amelie, as well as What Dreams May Come which springs to mind. And, don't forget either, they probably did to a few more takes, but the editor picked the one which was best for performance (I assume). I had the same thing bite me on a short I did where the one take out of 5 which had a stand creep into frame, was of course, the take used in the end.
  • 0

#6 Jonathan Bowerbank

Jonathan Bowerbank
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 2815 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 30 June 2009 - 03:34 PM

I'm trying to figure out, when you have that much money and that much time, why you wouldn't do another take WITHOUT the shadow of the crew falling on your talent.


I only noticed it once during a circular dolly track shot of Shia and Megan early on in the film. The sun was low, and you could clearly see the camera's shadow on Shia's back. It could have been edited out since his back pretty much took up the whole frame...so who knows why it was left in. Edting wise, the whole film was quite a mess...but if I were editing I probably would have crumbled under the pressure of fitting all that content into 2 1/2 hours also.

I also found the twins very annoying, and possibly offensive to blacks with their simian physique, gold teeth and ghetto accents...pretty distasteful.





!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm still really pissed about Jazz's death in the first film. And you'd think with all the resurrections goin' on in this film, they could easily bring him back to life, especially with a huge shard of the "All Spark" still in existence.
  • 0

#7 David Mullen ASC

David Mullen ASC
  • Sustaining Members
  • 19761 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 30 June 2009 - 07:00 PM

I also found the twins very annoying, and possibly offensive to blacks with their simian physique, gold teeth and ghetto accents...pretty distasteful.


Apparently the screenwriters have gone on the record to say that those two robots were all Michael Bay's doing...

The movie was fairly bad, sort of typical of what's wrong with big-budget action movies today, that they are solely concerned with topping themselves from five seconds ago rather than building a sequence with an emotional arc and some suspense.

I admire the sheer effort, which is massive, it seems half the time the camera is doing some 360 degree shot flying up and around the action whether inside or outside. Even with all the efx elements added, shooting the plates and getting all the on-set effects to time out was amazing. But to what end, just to confuse and finally bore the audience?

When I left, some father asked his five-year-old what he thought and the kid said "It was very busy!" That was as astute a critique as any I have read.
  • 0

#8 Jonathan Bowerbank

Jonathan Bowerbank
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 2815 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • San Francisco, CA

Posted 30 June 2009 - 07:05 PM

When I left, some father asked his five-year-old what he thought and the kid said "It was very busy!" That was as astute a critique as any I have read.


Ha ha, mine was very similar as I left the theatre "Well, that was a mess."
  • 0

#9 David Mullen ASC

David Mullen ASC
  • Sustaining Members
  • 19761 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 30 June 2009 - 07:23 PM

This article just showed up on Yahoo:
http://movies.yahoo....-questions.html

Other people have made this comment about the Air & Space Museum and why they don't see the National Mall outside the doors, etc. Well, what you see in the movie is the real Air & Space Museum annex out near Dulles Airport. I was just there in November -- a cool place, with not only the Space Shuttle and the Enola Gay, but also the Mothership model from "Close Encounters".

But the land around the annex is not some desert plain full of dead military yets, it's the Virginia landscape around Dulles.
  • 0

#10 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 01 July 2009 - 07:03 AM

I think everyone is still trying to figure out if they liked it or not... I am...


I'm suprised to hear you say that as I was starting to get the impression it had been almost universally panned. Seems to be making loads of money tho.

I just watched the videos in the link that David posted and I think it's supposed to be funny but isn't. Like that guy going omg omg we are going to die over and over. Just embaressing and the tiny robot with er, glasses. Hilarious.

Lots of expensive looking cgi tho.

Well, there it is.
  • 0

#11 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 01 July 2009 - 07:08 AM

I also found the twins very annoying, and possibly offensive to blacks with their simian physique, gold teeth and ghetto accents...pretty distasteful.


Nice!

The other Avatar movie (The Shayamalan one) is also stirring things up too:

http://img190.images...tairbenderr.jpg
  • 0

#12 Paul Bruening

Paul Bruening

    (deceased)

  • Sustaining Members
  • 2858 posts
  • Producer
  • Oxford, Mississippi

Posted 01 July 2009 - 07:50 AM

They're robots in disguise.
  • 0

#13 monday sunnlinn

monday sunnlinn
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 86 posts
  • Other
  • Boston

Posted 01 July 2009 - 11:06 AM

I'm suprised to hear you say that as I was starting to get the impression it had been almost universally panned. Seems to be making loads of money tho.

I just watched the videos in the link that David posted and I think it's supposed to be funny but isn't. Like that guy going omg omg we are going to die over and over. Just embaressing and the tiny robot with er, glasses. Hilarious.

Lots of expensive looking cgi tho.

Well, there it is.



well, there were a lot of fun things transforming and exploding... I don't always go to a movie hoping to have my intellectual horizons expanded. (only about 95% of the time). I at least expected nothing more than visceral eye-candy...but the twin robots really did ruin it for me... So if the sound hadn't been on, I probably would have liked it better...
  • 0

#14 ryan knight

ryan knight
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 115 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 07 July 2009 - 09:50 AM

i completely agree with all of the things said, esp. regarding the jar jar binks twins, the busyness, obtuse narrative. but going back and seeing it a second time (the first time was a bad print), it is much more enjoyable once your expectations are lowered. the first one was great, with a human grounded story about a boy and his car. the second really wanted the audience to be flung into a world far different from the first, where autobots are out there and decepticons are in bigger numbers.

but seriously, even though its sad that a $200M flick is much more enjoyable with lower expectations, the second time was great and twins weren't so bad.

PS in the scene when the camaro and two twin chevys are driving into NYC (low shot, front passenger tire) you see the production vehicles and even pylons in the BG down the bridge. bay's movies are full of that stuff. in pearl harbor when the battleships are being bombed, you see the focus puller with his bartech in his hand.
  • 0

#15 Antti Näyhä

Antti Näyhä
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 153 posts
  • Other
  • Belgium/Finland

Posted 14 July 2009 - 03:10 AM

Okay. I liked it because the IMAX forest fight scene and the IMAX desert segment were REALLY GOOD. You could actually see all of the fight moves. In the first film, they were out of frame and could only be "pereceived". This time, it was all there.
...
The 4K CGI was nice. Very photorealistic at times

I saw this recently on the world's largest rectangular cinema screen in IMAX Sydney, and I have to say two things to that:

1) ...even the forest fight was pretty confusing on such a screen. I did (rather amusingly) sense that Michael Bay is at least trying to back off from the action a little bit to make it work on the giant screen, but his effort just wasn't enough. Even in The Dark Knight, most of the IMAX sequences that really worked (IMO) were those that used wider shots and less frantic editing.

2) 4k just isn't enough for IMAX. No way. It still looked "good", but not as stunning as non-DI IMAX does. And of course, unlike TDK, this film only used IMAX for CGI sequences...

I guess I'm still counting on Terrence Malick to deliver the first truly great use of IMAX in a theatrical feature.

Other than that, I can only agree to most of the criticism expressed here. The film was practically unwatchable whenever there were no robots in frame. Still, there were a lot of robots in the frame, and just the final shot before the closing credits will have me smiling for weeks.
  • 0

#16 Keith Walters

Keith Walters
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2219 posts
  • Other
  • Sydney Australia

Posted 13 August 2009 - 08:33 PM

I admire the sheer effort, which is massive, it seems half the time the camera is doing some 360 degree shot flying up and around the action whether inside or outside. Even with all the efx elements added, shooting the plates and getting all the on-set effects to time out was amazing. But to what end, just to confuse and finally bore the audience?

That was exactly my thought, the sheer amount of WORK that went into that movie.

I was also impressed with the scenes in Egypt, particularly the old ruins around the pyramids.
Among the crumbling ancient stone walls were signs of more recent artefacts such as broken bits of pipe, old electrical wiring etc, exactly what you expect to see in old buildings in any modern city. Somebody really did their homework there.

Cute that the Real Enola Gay actually appeared in the film. Could the crew have ever imagined such a thing 64 years ago? I suppose at the time the atomic bomb was like the Transformers, a totally secret massive undertaking. Col Paul Tibbets only died just last year incidentally.

Not ever having been a Transformers fan, I'm not sure what a lot of the story was about, but on the whole it was less boring than a lot of films I've seen.

I also admired the way the actors mostly played their roles straight, like it was a standard war movie.

I sort of compare it with opera. People pay hundreds of dollars for tickets to performances with the most ridiculously contrived and unlikely plots, but the plot is not what they are there for, it's the music and the spectacle.

I'm also a great believer in the concept that no matter what you creating, whether it's a commercial, a war movie, a sitcom or even Porn, you have a duty to those footing the bill to produce the best commercial, war movie, sitcom or even Porn that you are capable of producing.
  • 0


rebotnix Technologies

Metropolis Post

The Slider

Tai Audio

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Visual Products

Willys Widgets

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

CineTape

Abel Cine

Opal

Glidecam

Paralinx LLC

Technodolly

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Aerial Filmworks

Wooden Camera

Ritter Battery

Rig Wheels Passport

CineLab

FJS International, LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

Glidecam

The Slider

FJS International, LLC

Technodolly

CineLab

Tai Audio

CineTape

Abel Cine

Willys Widgets

Aerial Filmworks

Paralinx LLC

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Visual Products

Opal

Wooden Camera

rebotnix Technologies

Ritter Battery

Metropolis Post

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Gamma Ray Digital Inc