Transformers: Age of Extinction is the fourth movie in the Transformers film franchise, directed by Michael Bay. At this point in a series, many franchises can see fatigue and repetition set in.
Age of Extinction attempts to refresh the series by introducing a brand new lead character and cast. At the same time, it delivers the same CGI-heavy action that the Transformers brand has become synonymous with.
Unfortunately, the Transformers movies have suffered from poor writing and sloppy character work in the past. Does Transformers: Age of Extinction manage to break the mold of high-budget yet underwhelming action? Let’s see if the fourth Transformers movie is capable of shifting the series in a new direction.
How to Stream or Download Transformers: Age of Extinction
The Film Review
Set five years after the events of the third movie, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Age of Extinction takes place during a time of unease between humans and the massive robot race known as Transformers. For years the two worked together in military efforts, defending Earth from the evil and plotting Decepticon robots.
Unfortunately, after the city of Chicago is ravaged by battles between the robots, even the good-guy Transformers are seen as targets. With bounties on their heads, the Transformers on Earth go into hiding. In the state of Texas, an unsuccessful inventor and protective father named Cade Yeager (Mark Whalberg) purchases a busted truck with the intent to scrap it for parts.
Unbeknownst to him, that truck is actually the greatest Transformer of them all, Optimus Prime.
Just like the other Transformers films, Age of Extinction assaults audiences with monumental amounts of action and metal-grinding chaos. The movie plays around with the idea of morally-gray Transformers, namely Lockdown (voiced by Mark Ryan), a tactical robot that can transform into a massive sniper rifle.
The movie also calls back to other popular Transformers brand lore with the inclusion of the prehistoric Dinobots. There are weaving conflicts between all allegiance of robot and human, as Cade Yeager and his daughter Tessa (Nicola Peltz) are quickly pulled into emerging battles.
If anything, Age of Extinction is great at delivering wickedly cool visuals and fun action sequences. There’s also a greater variety of action scenes than before, including a smattering of car chases, fight scenes, and robot-vs-robot carnage.
Unfortunately, Age of Extinction is also ripe with issues. For a movie that constantly bombards its viewers with explosive action, it can feel incredibly dull and repetitive at times.
This is mostly due to the 2 hour and 45-minute runtime, which makes the experience far too long and bloated. The story has way too many characters and sub-plots, and while Mark Whalberg delivers a commendable performance, most of the acting is mediocre.
There’s also an over-abundance of product placement in the movie, both for American and Chinese audiences. While the Transformers movies have always included some level of advertisement on-screen, the stuff in Age of Extinction is painfully apparent and obnoxious.
The Bottom Line
Overall, Transformers: Age of Extinction is an intense but equally bland viewing experience. While it’s ripe with crazy action and explosions, it lacks compelling characters and plot focus. The story can be unnecessarily complex and some characters are entirely forgettable, which makes the nearly 3-hour runtime a slog.
Age of Extinction provides some of the coolest and most unique sequences in the franchise, but it also drags more than any other Transformers movie before it. If you’re a fan of the franchise who just want more robot action, Age of Extinction is a passable yet frustratingly paced movie. It gets the job done, but just barely.
- Exceptionally cool action sequences
- Some fun Transformer designs and ideas
- New characters freshen up the franchise
- Far too long and poorly paced
- Excessive product placement
- Scattered storytelling that can't balance all sub-plots