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“Transformers: Dark of the Moon”
a review by Darby O’Gill

Well, here we are again… I know. Why am I even surprised?! I should know better by now! The first Transformers, was a total fluke. The only hope at this point is a total reboot. Okay, I’m going to be upfront with you guys. This review might have a few spoilers, but not full-on spoilers. It’s just that some of the things I’m going to talk about in this review might inadvertently lead you to figuring out some of the movie’s plot points and twists, not that you wouldn’t have been able to do it on your own in the theatre. I’m not going to be saying them out right, but they will however be implied. So, if for some reason beyond me, you still want to waste your time seeing this movie, and have yet to do so, please feel free to stop reading this review and come back here after you’ve clearly wasted three hours of your life. We’ll be here for you, like a support group, but without the milk and cookies.

In Transformers: Dark of the Moon, a movie so poorly written they can’t even get the subtitle right. I mean shouldn’t it be Dark Side of the Moon?! Ugh, whatever! So the Transformers are still working with the U.S. Government, minus the racist gold tooth learning disabled bots, which are replaced with slightly less offensive racist stereotypes, and the I can’t tell one from the other Decepticons are still in hiding. Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) is fresh out of college and is having a really hard time finding a job that makes him feel important again in his post robotic war lifestyle. And I’m sorry, but why is John Malkovich in this movie?! His character seriously serves absolutely no purpose! Remember when seeing John Malkovich in a movie meant it was going to be good?! Boy, are those days over! Let’s get back on track. Sam’s got a new girlfriend, Carly (Rosie Huntington-Whiteley), mostly because director Michael Bay fired Megan Fox for quitting after Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. Yeah, doesn’t really make a whole lot of sense, but that’s okay because who cares, well not the screenwriter that’s for sure. Just like in Speed 2, the script for Transformers: Dark of the Moon is, I’m guessing, the exact same as it would have been if Megan Fox’s character Mikaela was still around. There are a few added lines to make Carly fit-in, but the role was clearly written for Mikaela. Case-in-point, Carly has supposedly never seen these alien robots before now, but yet she manages to have a heart to heart conversation with Megatron, when she’s never even met him before. I for one find that amazing, because even I can barely tell the Decepticons apart. That scene makes way more sense with Mikaela, but once again at this point who cares? And while we’re on the subject of writing, here’s a tip: maybe don’t give away a major plot twist in the first ten minutes of your film with the use of an old Star Trek clip. Once again, not that I didn’t see it coming without your help, but that’s beside the point. Oh, and when did Optimus Prime become a cold-blooded killer? Did I miss a meeting?! Way to completely miss the point of the “good guys” Bay! I don’t think I ever needed to her Optimus say, “You die now!” or see him shoot someone execution style in the back of the head. I’d also like to take a moment to talk about product placement, and the use of two Australian NASCAR bots. I would love to know how much Target had to dish-out for the coveted codpiece. What is it, with Michael Bay and balls? I’ve known for sometime now that Michael Bay is a total douchebag, but this film just confirms it. How you ask? Well, even though Bay hasn’t officially announced that he won’t be making another Transformers movie, he did manage to kill-off almost the entire cast. Much like a 5 year old in a schoolyard sandbox that finds out it’s time to go, he chooses to break all his toys instead of letting other kids play with them when he’s gone. Douchebag. The only problem with that is this isn’t a sandbox, and luckily for us, Hasbro will most likely just reboot the entire series. Even if that’s not the case, I’m with Shia on this one. This will be my last Michael Bay Transformers movie!

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“Fast Five”
a review by Darby O’Gill

It’s hard to imagine that there have already been five Fast & Furious movies, but even more amazing than that is the fact that they’ve also seemed to be only getting better as they go! What started as a blatant rip-off of Point Break has somehow turned into a truly refreshing movie franchise. I know! I’m just as surprised as you are! The last installment was great, and this one’s even better! I wouldn’t have called myself a fan of the first three movies. The Fast and the Furious wasn’t terribly original, but it was entertaining just the same. And to be honest, I hadn’t even seen the other two until just before the release of the fourth film. 2 Fast 2 Furious seemed like a bad joke, but it wasn’t that bad. I was really surprised to find it fairly enjoyable. Tokyo Drift on the other hand was clearly a desperate attempt to sell more movie tickets by slapping the Fast and the Furious nametag on to it, although it clearly paved the way for the franchise’s revival. When director Justin Lin added the small cameo of Dom, played by Vin Diesel, at the end of Tokyo Drift, I think that in that moment he managed to open the true potential of this series. By realizing the characters themselves is what makes these movies great, and not necessarily the cars and street racing, Lin managed to persuade the principle characters of the original cast to return for the franchise’s fourth installment. Oddly tiled Fast & Furious, I’m not really sure how removing “The” from the original title makes it a new title and not just confusing, but that’s not really important. What is important is that the fourth movie was not only as good as the original, but it might even be better due to the fact that it was way more original than the original. Still with me?

In the fifth installment, Fast Five, Brian O’Conner played by Paul Walker, and Dom, find themselves on the run from the law once again, and hiding out in Rio de Janeiro. But, when an easy money job goes bad, it’s not just the law that’s after them this time, but one of Brazil’s most corrupt and powerful businessmen. But when the opportunity arises to pull one last job for an insane amount of money that will almost definitely ensure them a life of no more running, the choice is clear. Dom and Brian have to pull off the impossible, and to do so they’ll need the help of some old friends. Calling back not only the original cast, but cast members from all the previous installments, Fast Five is clearly the most character driven films of the franchise, which is what I think makes it the best of the series so far. The addition of federal agent Luke Hobbs, played by Dwayne Johnson, not only adds to the ever growing list of characters, but also gives us one hell of a fist fight! I’m not kidding. This is one for the books… Um, pictures?! You know what I mean! This showdown totally kicks ass! And, yes… I do realize that I’m talking about a Fast & Furious movie here. Look, this is a summer movie at its best, and yes you have to suspend your disbelief at times, but I for one am looking forward to Furious Six in the near future!

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