Can’t promise this is going to be spoiler free but here goes.

Like many Transformers fans, I was really skeptical about this latest installment.  Based on the total betrayal we received over Revenge of the Fallen, it is difficult not to approach this movie without reservations.

Let me put this to rest right here, right now.  Transformers: Dark of the Moon makes up for all the bad things that happened with the last movie.  This movie is by far the best of the Transformers series.  Michael Bay heard what the fans wanted and he delivered in spades.

Is it a perfect movie?  No, it isn’t.  It is however one action packed roller coaster ride that you will be begging to not end.  The childish humor is toned way down in this one and the ridiculous dialogue is scaled back as well.  No more dick jokes, no more racially offensive Autobots (Skids & Mudflap) and even Agent Simmons played by John Turturro is toned down.

Shia LaBeouf is actually pretty good in this movie.  Shia’s character Sam Whitwicky goes through a pretty hard time in the first half of the film.  Struggling to find a place for himself in the world without the aid and protection of the Autobots.  He doesn’t act at all like he did in ROTF and seems to have matured quite a bit.

One major surprise was the addition of Rosie Huntington-Whiteley.  The Victoria’s Secret model turned actress was a very refreshing change of pace to Megan Fox.  Many wondered if Rosie could pull off a decent performance in this film.  She is without a doubt very, very attractive window dressing to the film, but does a good job with her role.  She also happens to be (in my opinion) ten times hotter than Megan Fox ever dreamed of being.  Nuff said.

Without giving too much of the plot away, it is obvious that a lot of effort was put into the writing and story of this film.  It doesn’t suffer the same plot issues that ruined ROTF.  That doesn’t mean it is without flaws.  The good in this case outweighs the bad.  Special effects were far superior to the last film or any of the other films I’ve seen so far this summer.

The story does start out a bit slow in the beginning setting up events.  There is a lot of historical flashbacks to the Apollo 11 moon landing that center around the movie’s central plot.  We get to see that life for Sam after saving the world for the second time isn’t so bright and he is struggling in his post college, post Egyptian adventure of the previous movie.  One stand out scene comes from the very beginning of the film when we get to see Cybertron and the toll the Autobot/Decepticon war has taken on it.  It’s a very wide shot of the planet, but you can see groups of robots fighting along with aerial battles above.

Megatron is back and is hatching a grand scheme to finally bring total victory to the Decepticons.  There is very little mention of the events in ROTF and it seems that The Fallen is just a bad memory for Megatron.  That is one of the major issues to the story that left me wondering.  Megatron has had a plan all along to win the war and restore Cybertron; but how did The Fallen play into it?

We get to see Shockwave pretty early on when he confronts Optimus Prime.  We also get to hear the one and only line Shockwave has in the entire movie.  It is unfortunate that he doesn’t have a larger role.  Fortunately Soundwave does have a little more to do in this movie and is joined by another fan favorite Laserbeak.  He is the perfect little assassin who gets a great deal of pleasure out of his job.  Laserbeak also talks which was a surprise to me, but a welcomed one.

Another new addition is Sentinel Prime voiced by Leonard Nimoy.  He is one of the stand out characters of the film.  Megatron’s plans center around him and some Cybertronian technology that has crashed on our moon.  Sentinel and Optimus have several great scenes together along with a plot twist that I never saw coming.  Leonard Nimoy does an absolute fantastic job with Sentinel and even gets to drop a line from Star Trek.

Much like the last film there are robots galore.  The Decepticons launch a worldwide invasion that centers around Chicago.  The battle scenes in that city are very impressive and intense.  There is however one scene shown in the trailers of a Decepticon tearing apart a building.  The entire scene in the movie is a bit unrealistically dragged out.  Again without giving too much away, not everyone makes it through this one.  Several fan favorite characters are killed but it was necessary to bring the film series to a close.

Dark of the Moon is by no means an Oscar winning movie; although the special effects team should at least be nominated.  The movie isn’t without its flaws.  This time around it just isn’t as noticeable.  Once the story takes off it grabs you and doesn’t let you go until the credits start rolling.  This is the summer movie we’ve been waiting for.  It makes the promise, then it delivers with a bang.  It’s just a fun movie to watch.  Bottom line here is that if you were having second thoughts about this one, don’t.  Transformers: Dark of the Moon delivers and delivers BIG!

The Nerd gives this one 5 out of 5.

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