The Movieline Nine: Most Shameless Aspects of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Much has been made about the fact that Michael Bay outfitted one of his robots with wrecking ball testicles in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, but really, it's Bay who has the giant cojones. There are so many utterly shameless moments in this film that I could have filled another Movieline Nine with Bay's wacko, unfettered hubris, but for now, I'll stick to the movie's first hour and try to be non-spoilery.

So what exactly do I mean by "shameless"? Well, have a look at the very first item on our list and I think you'll get the picture:

1. Shia LaBeouf's college dorm room is outfitted with a gigantic poster of Bay's own Bad Boys 2. Just in case you miss it the first time it comes up (you won't, because the person next to you will begin snorting laughter), it receives its own loving close-up when Shia begins writing an equation on it later in the film.

2. There are two robots in the film called Mudflap and Skids, and despite being red and green, respectively, they are voiced in a way that clearly designates them to be the "black" robots. Also, Skids has a gold front tooth (no, I'm serious) and both cannot read.

3. Every single woman in this film is sexually objectified, save for John Turturro's mother. Every single one -- even Shia's mom! Whenever there is a scene set in a combat unit or government office, there are no women featured or even glimpsed because then they'd have to be wearing pants, presumably.

4. And from what I could gather, Shia attends a historic, Ivy League-type college that mandated short shorts as part of its co-ed integration.

5. One hot chick is revealed to be a Transformer, and naturally, we discover this when a mechanical tail comes out the back of her thin blue panties. You could allllmost make some sort of Freudian interpretation of this scenario and the fear it strikes in the male characters, except that it was clearly motivated by Bay going, "Let's get a pantie shot of this hottie."

6. At one point, two characters are in Paris eating escargot and they're accosted by a mime because that's all that happens in Paris, right? Those two things? That and maybe the Eiffel Tower gets hit by something and explodes.

7. Not to worry, though, because set amidst this stereotypical French tableau is a highly conspicuous Budweiser bottle. In fact, the product placement is so egregious and random in Fallen (for some reason, a huge Planters peanuts can is placed smack in the middle of a garage floor during one scene, because that's where one usually keeps food -- on the floor with nothing around it in a huge garage) that I practically expected them to rename Megan Fox's character as part of a lucrative branding deal ("Run, Sony Vaio! Run!").

8. Throughout the film, an evil government bureaucrat keeps making reference to a president who authorized him to override the plans devised by our benevolent military heroes. Right when you start wondering what paycheck-gobbling veteran actor they've tapped to play this president, a character announces, "President Obama has been taken to an underground bunker." So that's kind of weird.

9. OK, it's not in that first hour, but: those wrecking-ball testicles. Oh man. Yeah.


  • I refuse to see this.
    I'm holding out for Hasbro's other, BETTER franchise.
    Lord knows, the simple tale of two plastic robots - one RED, one BLUE - imbued with sentient thought and awesome fighting skills, will make 1000 times more sense than anything in this fetid, cynical, audience-hating turd.

  • JudgeFudge says:

    Wow. Thanks for this. You know, I think I might have forgotten what a multi-faceted hack Michael Bay is. When I think of Transformers 1, I mostly remember being annoyed at how the action wasn't interesting or easy to follow, and how the actual transorming of the robots was a muddled and disapointing effect.
    But yeah, wow, this sounds like a next level Michael Bay turkey.

  • nick says:

    I can't wait until this movie makes 10 trillion dollars and everyone gets all pissed off that, yet again, Bay has delivered an obscenely large blockbuster

  • snickers says:

    And yet, despite all the craziness and noise, people still actually pay real money to see this stuff. I still don't get it.

  • hellcat says:

    It surprises me that commenters don't understand how his movies/movies like this make money. It is bread and circus and people want it now just as they always have. It doesn't have to be good, in fact the lower the brow the better. Bread and circus people, bread and circus. GIve 'em what they want and make sure they don't have to think.

  • NoWireHangers says:

    It's PG-13 porn at it's finest. Although, I'm pretty sure #2 made my jaw drop. Bay's really Jar-Jarin' it' up, but if there's enough T&A I guess you can get away with anything.
    Also, on a side note:
    Lisa: It's awful being a kid. No one listens to you.
    Abe: It's rotten being old. No one listens to you.
    Homer: I'm a white male, age 18 to 49. Everyone listens to me -- no matter how dumb my suggestions are. (Pulls out a can of "Nuts and Gum: Together at Last!" starts chomping)

  • metroville says:

    Michael Bay is a Gobot in disguise.

  • Pretty much sums it up.

  • Colander says:

    Jazz from the original wasn't exactly culturally sensitive.

  • sweetbiscuit says:

    I actually understand that people are drawn to the "shiny shiny," especially when they're losing their jobs and houses and all. But Bay is worth mocking because I believe it is possible to make a shiny shiny that doesn't drag out every stereotype and objectification and lowest common denominator. Something that elevates, or surprises, or inspires, even a little.
    And I don't believe that the "bread and circus" lovers DEMAND low brow, I think they are just hungry, and low-hanging fruit is easier to pick.

  • Swope says:

    Hm. Funny. He always struck me as a Turbo Teen.

  • SunnydaZe says:

    When will I get to see John Turturro sexually objectified? In 3-D?

  • Patrick says:

    It's a movie about robots from outer space. Lets stop taking everything so seriously, eh?

  • Jeff says:

    So basically, this is an article promoting the movie by making it sound more awesome than it already was? Good job!

  • Keldroc says:

    Can people please stop calling Michael Bay a hack? Hacks by definition turn in uninspired and derivative work. They simply go in, do the job, and churn out product. Michael Bay has a singular style and absolutely busts his ass to make sure every one of his movies fits that style and is exactly what it is. The man cuts all his own trailers, for crying out loud.
    Now, one may think that Bay's style is overblown, juvenile, scattershot, hard-to-follow and panders to the lowest common denominator, but that just means one doesn't like Bay's style as a director, it doesn't mean he's a hack.
    This comment brought to you by the Association for Hating Movie Directors for the Right Reasons.

  • Corey says:

    Actually, you'll get your wish -- he appears in the movie in a g-string because the world demanded it...seriously.

  • Of course Bay hates Obama, do you think The New GM slashed their healthy product placement budget for "Transformer" movies?
    My favorite bad product placement is in "Superman 3" when Robert Vaughn walks into his giant supercomputer & there's a loving shot of a bottle of Barrelhead Root Beer sitting on top of the thing. Vaughn does a gesture, grumbling, "those workmen are so careless-leaving their lunches behind!"

  • Tupac Chopra says:

    Bay's characterization of Jazz was pretty circumscribed anyway: he was there, said a couple lines, and got ripped in half. But he was always the "black" Autobot, voiced by Benjamin "Scatman" Crothers in the original Transformers cartoon, who also voiced Hong Kong Phooey.

  • Siddy says:

    "Hacks by definition turn in uninspired and derivative work"
    "Michael Bay has a singular style... every one of his movies fits that style and is exactly what it is"
    Bay, by your own definition is a hack because if every one of his movies fits a certain style that to me sounds uninspired and derivative. Anyway, I'm not paying to watch this movie.

  • Frowny McBeard says:

    Well, he was the "black" autobot until he was mostly pushed to the background in favor of Blaster, who was a "ghetto blaster." So it's not like Bay doesn't have some precedent on cultural insensitivity on Transformers. Casey Kasem left the show because there was a fictional Middle Eastern country named "Carbombya" fer crissake. But I have to know if the screenwriters thought "You know what we got wrong with Jazz? Not enough shuckin' and jivin'."

  • Seabear70 says:

    Am I the only one who appreciates the fact that he's equally insulting to Obama as he was to Bush?

  • Juancho says:

    You've never seen Box of Moonlight, have ya?

  • Maizen says:

    Jesus people, it is not like Michael Bay is a horrible director. He is a summer blockbuster MACHINE! That is his role in Hollywood...and he's DAMN good at it too. If you don't like his style, guess what....DON'T GO SEE THE FREAKIN MOVIE! Jackasses!

  • crossoverman says:

    I might take this article more seriously if it wasn't objectifying Megan Fox in the accompanying photo.

  • Pay_Me_Or_Pay_Me_No_Attention says:

    There is ONLY one thing Mr. Bay is good at as a director. He always has impeccable catering and kraft service on his sets..