Extinction dies a slow death

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - MOVIES - Leigh Paatsch

TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION ( M) Di­rec­tor: Michael Bay ( Transformers) Star­ring: Mark Wahlberg, Ni­cola Peltz, Stan­ley Tucci, Kelsey Gram­mer, Jack Reynor.

I S Transformers: Age of Extinction the worst ac­tion block­buster ever?

The fi­nal an­swer is one best an­swered by Hol­ly­wood his­to­ri­ans fur­ther down the track.

How­ever, right here and right now, even the fairest- minded ob­servers would be hard­pressed to deny this fourth in­stal­ment in the ever- crap­pen­ing Transformers se­ries boasts im­pres­sive cre­den­tials for the ti­tle.

Never be­fore has a big- ticket budget ( priced at $ 200 mil­lion, and then some) been blown on such a small- minded out­come.

At turns bloated, be­wil­der­ing and bum­numb­ingly over­long, all that will hope­fully be ex­tinct by the end of Age of Extinction will be the urge to live through such a vac­u­ous or­deal ever again.

Don’t go fall­ing for the pre- game pitch that this will be a re­boot, as the only no­table change over at Transformers Inc is all about in­ter­nal staffing.

For­mer fran­chise front­man Shia LaBeouf has been shown the door and an older- butno- wiser Mark Wahlberg ush­ered in as his re­place­ment.

He plays Cade Yea­ger, a down- and- out in­ven­tor who will serve as the movie’s main man when it comes to hu­mans be­friend­ing shape- shift­ing ro­bots.

Cade also has a 17- year- old daugh­ter named Tessa. She is played by Ni­cola Peltz, a young lady who knows just where to be should view­ers re­quire im­me­di­ate up­dates on how her cleav­age or back­side is do­ing.

Wahlberg, Peltz and a pass­ing pa­rade of slum­ming sup­port names ( led by Stan­ley Tucci and Kelsey Gram­mer) are among those in­volved when Op­ti­mus Prime and his fel­low Au­to­bots re­turn from ex­ile to face an all- new suite of en­e­mies.

The US Govern­ment is no longer a fan of the Au­to­bots’ work. Nei­ther is the CIA. Same goes for a cor­rupt ar­ma­ment tech­nol­ogy com­pany.

Some­times the anti- Au­to­bot fac­tion is also boosted by a new and vi­cious vis­i­tor from across the galaxy.

But re­ally, who hates who – and why, and what they are go­ing to do about it – be­comes im­pos­si­ble to fol­low af­ter a while. There is rarely a pe­riod in this 160- minute pic­ture where it doesn’t feel as if ev­ery­thing is be­ing made up on the spot.

Mean­while, reg­u­lar Transformers di­rec­tor Michael Bay con­ducts his usual per­fect storm of brain- freezes, brain- fades and brain- farts, jack­ham­mer­ing the frame with dig­i­tally-ren­dered de­tri­tus at ev­ery op­por­tu­nity.

The only mo­ments where this des­per­ate au­dio- vis­ual frenzy will briefly sub­side is when prod­ucts are thought­fully placed so their lo­gos right­fully re­ceive the screen time their man­u­fac­tur­ers have paid for.

File un­der all hype and no hope, and do your best to avoid. Now show­ing Vil­lage Cin­e­mas

AC­TION HERO: Mark Wahlberg helps Op­ti­mus Prime and his Au­to­bots in the lat­est film in the Transformers se­ries, Age of Extinction.

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