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'Rejected' Dark Knight script
July 7, 2008 2:02 PM   Subscribe

Michael Bay, director of Transformers and other predictable blockbuster movies apparently wrote a script for The Dark Knight that was rejected by Warner Bros. Amazingly, it has surfaced on the net…
posted by Surfyournut (130 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Amazing!!
posted by KokuRyu at 2:03 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


The cover sheet alone makes me think that this just might be some kind of joke...
posted by Huck500 at 2:06 PM on July 7, 2008


A killing joke, perhaps?
posted by never used baby shoes at 2:07 PM on July 7, 2008 [12 favorites]


Sarcasm's a tough read on the internet, doubly so when making an FPP.
posted by SpiffyRob at 2:07 PM on July 7, 2008


We pan to a beautiful woman: platinum blonde with a huge rack. She is the hottest woman in the world, but she wears glasses because she is also the smartest woman in the world.

Haha! *snort*
posted by Foci for Analysis at 2:08 PM on July 7, 2008


"Which one of the internets do we hack?"

"All of them."
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:09 PM on July 7, 2008 [11 favorites]


Michael Bay wrote this comment for me. Though this may be the first you’ve heard of it, I have included a footnote* to back it up.

















*I'm Michael Bay, and I totally wrote this.
posted by 23skidoo at 2:09 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Hey, I don't like Bay's work either. Can I get some hate in?
posted by Burhanistan at 2:10 PM on July 7, 2008


Wait, that was rejected? It read like pure Shakespeare! Well, given the towering giants of cinema that have handled the Batman in the past I'm sure Bay will have his turn at the helm.
posted by lekvar at 2:11 PM on July 7, 2008


On the subject of the other Batman films, I read a little while ago about an edit of Batman and Robin that had been 'de-assified'.
posted by Surfyournut at 2:13 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's still better than this version of Wonder Woman.
posted by Astro Zombie at 2:14 PM on July 7, 2008 [3 favorites]


Michael Bay's scripts need to be Jason Todd'd, if you know what I mean.*


* and I don't mean "brought back under another name", I mean "beaten to death with a crowbar"
posted by blue_beetle at 2:15 PM on July 7, 2008


KABOOOOOMM!!!!!!! *blows up thread*
posted by milarepa at 2:15 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]



"Which one of the internets do we hack?"
"All of them."


Boy, that sounds awfully familiar...
posted by Dr-Baa at 2:16 PM on July 7, 2008 [9 favorites]


Jesus, these get shittier every day. It's like something out of a bad Hollywood movie script written by Michael Bay.
posted by loquacious at 2:20 PM on July 7, 2008


Michael Bay is the Uwe Boll of action movie concepts.
posted by m0nm0n at 2:24 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


You know, today I was suffering from nearly leathal ennui before I remembered only boring people get bored and discovering my new goal.

I want to kidnap Michael Bay and Ewe Boll and make a movie...

...of both of them cage fighting to the death.


It's going to have the sweetest, most tender love scenes ever filmed, I just know it.
posted by loquacious at 2:26 PM on July 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


Uwe? Ewe? Baaahaaahaaa.
posted by loquacious at 2:26 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm always up for a little Michael Bay hate-on, so I'll repost this synopsis of an Esquire profile by Fametracker:

Here's what you need to know about Michael Bay: Well, since you've likely already given him three hours of your life, you won't want to give him forty minutes more by reading this piece. So we're going to condense the Inspiring Profile about the Extraordinary Life of Michael Bay down to its essential elements:

Whether Michael Bay wears his collar up: He does.

Whether Michael Bay avoids parking in the handicapped spot: He does not.

What Michael Bay tells himself when his movies get bad reviews: "It's like, sometimes, it's like, not everyone has to like my movies! Okay? I don't care if they don't like my movies!"

What Michael Bay says to critics who gave Armageddon a bad review: "It's like, dude, wake up!"

What Michael Bay remembers about the time his dog, Grace, ate a handful of rocks: "She was in the hospital. I mean, it was a lot of rocks. She had enemas and all that stuff to get them out ­- it was so funny."

What Michael Bay said when he was called by a veterinarian who was in the middle of an operation to remove foreign objects from the intestines of Bay's other dog, Mason: "Well, what does it look like? Does it look like pool equipment?"

What Michael Bay said when, as a young man, he worked as an underling on Raiders of the Lost Ark: "Wow, this movie is really going to suck."

What Michael Bay remembers about his dying father's last days: "It's sad because, you know, he said, 'One thing I want to live to see is your movie.'"
posted by The Card Cheat at 2:30 PM on July 7, 2008 [23 favorites]


An American Flag (CGI) flies proudly in the central courtyard.

Oh, this is going to be good.
posted by shmegegge at 2:30 PM on July 7, 2008


"Pyrotechnics erupt in the distance. Guitar solo."

I can't imagine how any movie can do without such a scene. In fact, I hereby boycott every movie that does not feature both of these at the same time.
posted by spiderskull at 2:34 PM on July 7, 2008


Thanks for the laugh... but I mean, Batman movies? Every one that's been released so far has been shit so it's an odd thing to spoof (though I guess they're really spoofing Bay). The last one had multiple endings (none of them good), multiple bad guys with zero charisma, and a chase that had a 12k pound vehicle driving on a clay roof. Repeatedly people said it was the best of the four released so far. That's not saying much.
posted by dobbs at 2:35 PM on July 7, 2008


When I do that you beat me over the head with unpulped copies of Klemke's apologia for G.E. Moore; when YOU do it you get to user the Cool And Nasty Laff.
Life not fair.
posted by Dizzy at 2:35 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's never a bad time to hate on Michael Bay. I wanted to press assault charges against him after watching Transformers. I swear that just watching that trainwreck made me extra stupid for the rest of the month.

Prime name-drops "eBay" in his first scene? Are you shitting me, Bay? Get your useless fucking hands off of my childhood.
posted by EatTheWeak at 2:39 PM on July 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


Yea I didn't quite understand all the praise for Batman Begins–it put me to sleep. I'm a fan of Christian Bale, but I just couldn't get into that film.

What the franchise really needs is a Joel Schumacher script with Michael Bay directing. That will fix it.
posted by Mister_A at 2:39 PM on July 7, 2008


That cover sheet is so Tyler Perry. Adorable.
posted by the littlest brussels sprout at 2:48 PM on July 7, 2008


*flexes sculpted, shirtless torso*
posted by the littlest brussels sprout at 2:49 PM on July 7, 2008


Michael Bay's offices in Santa Monica are right next door to Playboy.com. Coincidence? Nope!
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 2:50 PM on July 7, 2008


Repeatedly people said it was the best of the four released so far.

There have been six, no?
posted by mkb at 2:51 PM on July 7, 2008


Michael Bay: Power Director
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:52 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Cue AC/DC's "Back In Black."

Batman: Back in black

Pyrotechnics erupt in the distance. Guitar solo.


I don't know about the rest of the movie, but damn, this scene needs to be shot. Starring me.
posted by quin at 2:55 PM on July 7, 2008 [5 favorites]


There have been six, no?

Only if you count the 1966 one and the Schumacher ones.
posted by dobbs at 2:56 PM on July 7, 2008


dobbs--if you can't see the difference between a Christopher Nolan film and a Michael Bay film, I don't know what to say to you.
posted by zardoz at 2:56 PM on July 7, 2008


I weep bitter tears that we have been denied what would have been the greatest scene of movie history... namely the transformation of Bruce Wayne into Batman to the tune of Back in Black. Weep I tell you.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:57 PM on July 7, 2008


I like Michael Bay. He doesn't pretend to be anything than what he is (nicely shot, quickly cut popcorn) and delivers exactly that. It may not be your cup of tea, which is fine, but hatin' on the man for doing what he does seems silly.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:02 PM on July 7, 2008


"Pyrotechnics erupt in the distance. Guitar solo."

I can't imagine how any movie can do without such a scene. In fact, I hereby boycott every movie that does not feature both of these at the same time.


This should be a plugin for Final Cut. You should be able to add a Michael Bay to a given clip: halve the effective frame rate, lay in some explosions as a transparency effect, and pipe in some motherfucking Steve Stevens in a new audio track.

Let that shit out in the wild on YouTube and I guarantee you that inside like a week people will be all "Imogen Who?"
posted by cortex at 3:04 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


All I remember of Transformers was my gut-wrenching disappointment. And the motion blurring, so much motion blurring.

Also, here's a great analysis of Armageddon on why, exactly, it was so ridiculous. An excerpt:
There's an entire commentary track with the "science advisors," a NASA employee and a former astronaut, who tried to make the movie as scientifically accurate as possible. Listening to these guys talk about their constant battles to get Michael Bay and company to make the film at all relate to the world of science (for example, when Mir explodes, it explodes, like it's in an atmosphere) is a case study in cognitive dissonance.
posted by pyrex at 3:04 PM on July 7, 2008 [9 favorites]


There's an entire commentary track with the "science advisors," a NASA employee and a former astronaut, who tried to make the movie as scientifically accurate as possible.

i.e. boring. Michael Bay doesn't do boring in that way.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:07 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Does Jay Pinkerton (RIP) know about this?
posted by maxwelton at 3:12 PM on July 7, 2008


Although it's worth mentioning that Bay does not write films.

Imagine being this guy. You've worked so hard to commercialize and distill black culture into a series of increasingly stereotyped exploitation flicks, and all of a sudden you work with Michael Bay and no one wants to talk to you anymore.

I mean, shit, you wrote Bull Durham, god damn it!

Maybe you lie awake at night, asking yourself if you should have stuck with old white guy movies. Maybe you went wrong when you actually had the stones to make Will Smith say "Don't hate the player, hate the game." Nobody minded when you made Damon Wayans watch Dolemite! God damn it, somewhere in your gut you knew that you were on more familiar territory with Tin Cup, but you really thought you got black culture! You made them say "Day-aamn!" and everything!

As obscurity overtakes you, and the glory of your past accomplishments is completely overshadowed by your last few tremendous gaffs, maybe you think to yourself - at the end - "I just knew I should have put spinning rims on their cars."
posted by shmegegge at 3:13 PM on July 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


I can't read that script without thinking of it as an action movie parody from the Simpsons. Every line confirms it, especially.....
Bruce: Let's do this.
posted by Liquidwolf at 3:16 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Michael Bay doesn't do boring in that way.

I can't fault you for defending pop as pop, but I want to be clear here that I believe Michael Bay makes not just fun movies but deeply stupid ones.
posted by cortex at 3:16 PM on July 7, 2008 [6 favorites]


Cue AC/DC's "Back In Black."

Batman: Back in black

Pyrotechnics erupt in the distance. Guitar solo.

I don't know about the rest of the movie, but damn, this scene needs to be shot. Starring me.


I guess you didn't see Iron Man.
posted by norm at 3:25 PM on July 7, 2008 [6 favorites]


I want to be clear here that I believe Michael Bay makes not just fun movies but deeply stupid ones.

Deathgrip on teh obvious: cortex haz it.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 3:26 PM on July 7, 2008 [5 favorites]


Michael Bay makes not just fun movies but deeply stupid ones.

Nah, he just doesn't sweat the details, like plot holes, science etc, and yes, I'm serious when I say that. He's going for big drams and if those details get in the way, Bay is like "Screw THAT". Which is fine, IMO. He makes money, puts people to work and I walk out feeling like I got exactly what I was looking for. That's a plus in my book.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:28 PM on July 7, 2008


Transformers watersports.

Need I say more?

(worries about Michael Bay ever occupying the same space as Uwe Boll, thus creating a suck implosion destroying the world in a badly-scripted apocalypse. With explosions. Like in atmosphere. With wooden-faced observers.)
posted by Samizdata at 3:30 PM on July 7, 2008


Nah, he just doesn't sweat the details, like plot holes, science etc, and yes, I'm serious when I say that.

But the result of him not sweating those details is a deeply stupid movie. What you're saying isn't that his movies aren't stupid. You're just saying that you're perfectly fine with watching an intensely stupid movie because you want to see explosions/sweeping camera dollies/whatever other thing you like to see in Bay's films. This is, of course, your choice. Watch what you want and more power to you.

On the other hand "hatin' on the man" is perfectly reasonable if you don't like deeply stupid movies.
posted by shmegegge at 3:34 PM on July 7, 2008


But the result of him not sweating those details is a deeply stupid movie.

To YOU, of course, while others fine it quite entertaining, because they're not getting hung on whether this or that is real. Seriously, why go to the movies if you're expecting reality? Christ, it's all fantasy, why not have fun with it and put sound in space and space shuttles dodging asteroids through space. It looked spectacular.

Granted, a steady diet of that sounds unappealing, but not every film has to be alike and adher to the same conventions.

On the other hand "hatin' on the man" is perfectly reasonable if you don't like deeply stupid movies.

No, it's not because there are plenty of other types of movies and at this point in Bay's career it's silly to expect him to do much else, you know?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:45 PM on July 7, 2008


'Transformers' made me first writhe in pain, then become uncontrollably angry.
posted by beerbajay at 3:49 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


To YOU, of course, while others fine it quite entertaining,

One does not exclude the other. That's the point I'm trying to make. Anyone can find it incredibly entertaining, either despite or because of its stupidity.

because they're not getting hung on whether this or that is real. Seriously, why go to the movies if you're expecting reality?

I don't know where you're getting this idea from. You mean because Transformers was science fiction? I loved the original and still do. I've been a huge sci fi fan my whole life. I don't know why you think there's some problem with the reality of the picture. For myself, I have no problem with the giant robot idea. I have a problem with how poorly made the movie is.

On the other hand "hatin' on the man" is perfectly reasonable if you don't like deeply stupid movies.

No, it's not because there are plenty of other types of movies and at this point in Bay's career it's silly to expect him to do much else, you know?


This doesn't make any sense.
posted by shmegegge at 3:53 PM on July 7, 2008


Nah, he just doesn't sweat the details

Specifically, he doesn't sweat the details that a filmmaker is required to sweat if that filmmaker doesn't want to produce a deeply stupid film.

And I want to be clear that I'm not just saying Ha Ha Stupid Culture. I like bombastic, stupid films in moderate doses. I'm right there with you. I rented The Rock a while back because, darn it, that was a pretty good stupid fucking Bruckheimer film and, man, Sean Connery. Okay.

But they are still deeply stupid. They are bad, embarrassing films. Some of them are more fun than others and I'll never tell you not to enjoy them and if we were hanging out for an evening I'd be happy to get some beer and watch a couple of them back to back with you.

But they're shit.
posted by cortex at 4:02 PM on July 7, 2008 [9 favorites]


There are plenty of terrible directors out there. Michael Bay deserves the hate, not because he's so terrible, but because studios are entrusting him with properties that he proceeds to crap all over.

I quite liked Armageddon as a popcorn movie, despite the fact that it was mindless, because it wasn't defecating on a part of my childhood.
posted by gurple at 4:06 PM on July 7, 2008


I realize no one is going to click through to a myspace blog self-link, so here is my reaction immediately upon getting home from "Transformers."



Michael Bay: You Are Dumb.

ok so that’s not exactly news. But have you seen this Tranformers shit?? This is literally the worst movie I have ever seen in my life. Sure, every piece of dialogue is clunky and embarassing- all the "comedy" parts would embarass the worst Comedy Store hack, and most to all the serious parts are hilariously awful.

But that’s to be expected. The apologists will say it’s a "guilty pleasure." But I can’t see how any human being with an IQ over 70 could find anything resembling pleasure in this movie. There is AN HOUR AND A HALF of setup that could have been cut. We dont MEET Optimus Prime for about 70 minutes. Screenwriting 100 students know better than that.

The thing everyone came to see- the robots fighting- doesnt happen for about two hours, and then it’s not especially interesting. Big action movies are great- like Termninator II. But this is no T2, although hack-extrordinaire bay did recycle the idea of staging a chase in the LA River Bed.

Oh and guess what- there are only five Autobots. Why? GMC only had five models they wanted to place. Seriously.

if you gave an immature for-his-age fourth grader with ADHD $150 million dollars to make a movie, the end product would be something like this- but probably a little better.

50 pages could be written on the logical inconssitencies and just plain stupidity, but I’ll stick with my favorite:

at the end of the movie, they are going to dump the decepticons in the deepest part of the ocean, the Marinaras trench, which they call by a fake name for no conceivable reason. They are doing this because the decepticons will be kept asleep or something by the "high pressure and sub-freezing tempuratures."

Sub-freezing temperatures. Sub-freezing refers to the freezing point of WATER. So they’re going to put them in the OCEAN, the part with the sub-freezing tempuratures.

WHEN WATER FREEZES IT TURNS INTO ICE. Michael Bay is dumber than a preschooler. I rest my case.


oh and special note to the people at the Los Feliz 3 who applauded at the end of the movie (leaving aside the fact that you are applauding one of the worst films in history and a slap in the face to anyone who paid money to see it):

I can only hope that when we are visited by aliens, they choose to engage in some Darwinian experiment to cull the stupidest among us and raise our collective intelligence as a species. because I am quite confident that when this happens, the first to be hit by their death rays will be the people they observe auditorally expressing their approval to PROJECTED IMAGES ON A SCREEN, which even if they were of human beings and not CG’ed robots, CAN NOT HEAR YOU BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT THERE YOU FUCKING MORONS.

That is all.

posted by drjimmy11 at 4:11 PM on July 7, 2008 [8 favorites]


To YOU, of course, while others fine it quite entertaining, because they're not getting hung on whether this or that is real.

THAT'S BECAUSE THEY'RE FUCKING MORONS. THEY'RE MORONS. THAT'S WHAT THEY DO - THEY ACT MORONIC AND GO SEE MICHAEL BAY MOVIES AND ENJOY THEM. THEY HAVE SIMPLE, UNSOPHISTICATED TASTES THAT COULD JUST AS EASILY BE SATED WITH A LAME HANNA BARBARA CARTOON AND A BOWL OF SUGARY CEREAL. OR A FUCKING SHINY ROCK.

Despite whatever enjoyment these morons may derive from whatever movie these are not "features" to be extolling and defending.

Why are you defending Bay? That's like defending cowshit. Sure, both Michael Bay and cowshit could both be ground up into a fine fertilizer - in which pretty things like flowers would most certainly grow - but that doesn't eliminate the fact that they're both a bunch of useless bullshit before someone with some skill came along and mulched them into a flower bed.
posted by loquacious at 4:13 PM on July 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


(as a follow-up, I am aware that sea water may have a slightly lower freezing point, but I stand by my basic point. The temperature of water in the Marinaras trench is not below 0c.)
posted by drjimmy11 at 4:14 PM on July 7, 2008


I went and looked up some science, drjimmy11, just because I recalled the very point you just noted.

basically, your point stands just fine, because ocean water freezes at a whopping -2 degrees celsius (2 degrees' difference! whee!) but the deepest part of the ocean sits at about +2 degrees celsius, anyway.

I'm sure we're all bettered by my research.
posted by shmegegge at 4:19 PM on July 7, 2008 [4 favorites]


those details get in the way, Bay is like "Screw THAT"

Reminds me of a HuronBob comment that made me laugh.

Via his producer son, HuronBob is acquainted with Zack Snyder. As HuronBob said it...

Back during Dawn, when it got out that the zombies could run, the shinola hit the fan, and the fanboys... everybody complained, everyone had his/her opinion on this, including George R.! "Zombies can't run!", they all said, and they all came out with the philosophical, biological, zoological, religious, medical, and mathematical reasons why that was so...

When I asked Zack about that, his answer was simply... "In the REAL zombie world......." and never finished that sentence....

Therein lies your answer...


And that's why Bay makes the movies he does in the way that he does them, I suppose. Which doesn't explain Pearl Harbor, no sir, but does say a lot about Armageddon and Transformers.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 4:21 PM on July 7, 2008


if you can't see the difference between a Christopher Nolan film and a Michael Bay film, I don't know what to say to you.

I didn't say that Batman Begins was the same as Michael Bay's films--I said that it's a pretty shit movie just like the previous Batman movies. I quite like Nolan's other films but the things they have going for them (strong characters, rising action, well-shot, and compelling, believable action) are not present in BB.
posted by dobbs at 4:22 PM on July 7, 2008


dobbs are you sure it's a shit film or could it be you just don't like genre films?
posted by nola at 4:33 PM on July 7, 2008


The script didn't mention that all the exteriors need to be shot from a rotating helicopter perspective while a menacing guitar chord is hit.

Fail.
posted by rooftop secrets at 4:37 PM on July 7, 2008



(as a follow-up, I am aware that sea water may have a slightly lower freezing point, but I stand by my basic point. The temperature of water in the Marinaras trench is not below 0c.)


I'm pretty sure it's the Mariana Trench.


Although a trench of marinara might fuck up a decepticon too i dunno am not clear on the science
posted by stenseng at 4:51 PM on July 7, 2008 [9 favorites]


There is a huge difference between making zombies run, and having giant robots comically hiding from some kids parents for no reason at all -- for like 10 minutes.
posted by delmoi at 5:00 PM on July 7, 2008 [3 favorites]


I didn't say that Batman Begins was the same as Michael Bay's films--I said that it's a pretty shit movie just like the previous

Ah yes... SPOILER ALERT...

The movie which depends on the plot device of using an extremely powerful microwave emitter to vaporize a drug/toxin into the air, which is residing in the city water supplies... in pipes... underground....

Lest one forget... The average human is 55-78% water... So... guess which is going to microwave first... the heavy pipes underground, or the people nearby...

Stupidity on levels the most previous rounds of Batman movies didn't accomplish until their second or third outting.
posted by jkaczor at 5:01 PM on July 7, 2008


Micheal Bay is a terrible director. This is a fact. I can't stand any of his films. I've only ever seen one.

And yet there he is every weekend, happy as a clam, sipping double malt 50 year old scotch and snorting coke off of Scarlet Johansen's tits on his private mink lined Lear Jet that he pilots to his private tropical island. An island called Youareabunchafuckinginternetlosershahaha Island.
posted by tkchrist at 5:04 PM on July 7, 2008 [7 favorites]


Oh, he'll fall. Hard. And then some shit will blow up. On him.

It simply has to.
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:11 PM on July 7, 2008


*blinks*

Well, after reading tkchrist's assessment of how this man spends his free time, I must say, my respect level has gone up considerably.

I mean, how could it not? That's basically a word for word description of my retirement plans.
posted by quin at 5:12 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Anyone can find it incredibly entertaining, either despite or because of its stupidity.

Fair enough, good point.

I have a problem with how poorly made the movie is.

Ok, could you define that, please? What was poorly made about the movie that ruined it for you? On this point, I'm not looking to argue, just curious.

This doesn't make any sense.
Hating on Michael Bay because he's being Michael Bay seems silly. At this point, everyone knows what to expect from a Michael Bay film, it's not like he's continually testing and changing, you know? If you like, go see it. If you don't, go see something else you like.

I'd be happy to get some beer and watch a couple of them back to back with you.

But they're shit.


Ah, agree to disagree. I'd call them mindless fun, as opposed to shit, because I dislike the idea that I'm watching shitty things, but that's just a difference in terms.

But I can’t see how any human being with an IQ over 70 could find anything resembling pleasure in this movie.

I don't understand these sort of statements. Seriously, have you never seen someone smart enjoy something stupid? Is the idea that a film can reach other parts of a person besides the brain that troubling? Are the people you love all logical and nothing else?

Why are you defending Bay?

'cause I paid my money was mostly entertained for the length of time of the piece. That's really all you can ask.

Bay isn't perfect of course, I have my problem with him. I tend to think his films would be much better if they were just 90 minutes or so, but he has enough of a visual style that I usually walk pleased with something.

And really, it's not so much defending Bay as growing tired of and bored with this circle jerk of hatin' on the popcorn movies. It's EASY to point out Bay's flaws and laugh and type in all caps over the "horror" that he's done. So easy, it's starting to come off as lazy hack work when I see people doing it. If Bay pisses you off so much, spend some time creating something you think is better and then go get that made. But to go and spend time aping what you supposedly hate for cheap laughs screams frustrated jackass and really, who needs more of those in the world?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:19 PM on July 7, 2008


There's a place in this world for stupid, by the book, cliche ridden, stuff blows up real pretty action movies. Bay makes ok versions of those and they make tons of money. If that was all he did I wouldn't hate him. But Bay has somehow managed to make product placement even more blatant than the hacks before him. You can see how he has reworked scenes to get more product placement money out of them. Fuck that. If someone is going to pitch 2 hours of ads at me, I shouldn't be the one spending the money.
posted by aspo at 5:34 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


it's undeniable that Bay is a much more interesting director than Nolan -- he's not pretending to do anything more than loud, bombastic, as-commercial-as-possible movies. he's not trying to flatter his audience, and doesn't pat them on the back because they're so fucking smart -- LOOK, THE ACTION MOVES BACKWARDS! LOOK, ROBIN WILLIAMS IS A BIG MEANIE! IN ALASKA! LOOK, BATMAN IS A NINJA! HOLY SHIT IS THAT DAVID BOWIE???

Bay steals greedily from so many places (the Robert Frank flag shot in Armageddon is a personal favorite) makes very unhealthy popcorn but doesn't pretend it's foie gras the way Nolan does. and by doing the Batman films, Nolan has only shown how much more talented Tim Burton is -- Nolan's recipe to do Batman is simple: when in doubt, shoot Bale's (very impressive, mind you) abs. it'd be funny to see the result of that strategy had Nolan cast Michael Keaton as Batman, as Burton did.

Bay, on the other hand, however crude his visual language and however limited his skills, is an actual film director with an actual visual style. he doesn't pretend he's not selling you something, he's doing the big-budget action film as a commercial entity -- conservative (not reactionary) to the core. and at least he wears his greed on his sleeve. Bay shoots the end of the world as he knows it -- as a beer commercial with astronauts. it's in the Criterion Pléiade, and rightly so. but Bay looks like a surfer and speaks like a surfer and makes American flags and people in the military look good -- that makes him automatically suspect to people who like movies that make you feel smarter than you probably are.

in the end, it all boils down to the (for the most part) baseless inferiority complex so many otherwise rational Americans suffer from whenever a Brit, no matter how mediocre, opens his mouth -- he's got a funny accent, he must be fucking brilliant! he went to Oxford or something!

(and Memento has a huge gaping hole that makes it simply not believable)
posted by matteo at 5:38 PM on July 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


Yeah Brandon, I see what you're saying, but Bay still sucks.

And while the microwave emitter in Batman Begins was, as jkaczor points out, just a wee bit implausible, I don't think it was anywhere near as bad as anything in the previous films, probably because while it was an important plot device, it was basically mentioned then glossed over and became part of the background of the film. It was more important as a it functioned metaphorically for Bruce & Wayne Industries -- it was the weapon developed by Wayne Industries despite Wayne Sr. never believing in such things, and thus the destruction of it was part of Bruce's journey to taking the place of his father as the new protector of Gotham.

My problems with the movie (which I generally love, even more than Nolan's other films) are 1) Katie Holmes sucks; 2) it starts a bit slowly, and the origin story could have been cut from 45 min to 25, easily; and 3) Rutger Hauer's character seemed like it was going to be more important than it was, especially considering it's Rutger Freakin Hauer and he was built up as a bit of a bastard -- that he didn't really figure much in the larger story was a bit of a let-down, in my opinion.
posted by Saxon Kane at 5:41 PM on July 7, 2008


I walk out feeling like I got exactly what I was looking for.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:28 PM on July 7


That is unbelievably fucking sad.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 5:42 PM on July 7, 2008


I see what you're saying, but Bay still sucks.
To each their own, then, as long as you're not doing it in the streets and scaring the horses.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:44 PM on July 7, 2008


dobbs are you sure it's a shit film or could it be you just don't like genre films?

Wha? I love genre films. I love any film that's well written. I was at the first midnight screening of BB. It was a snooze fest--if I hadn't been laughing at the ridiculousness of it I'd have fallen asleep.
posted by dobbs at 5:49 PM on July 7, 2008


Oh, I forgot to mention the stupid, stupid thing in Burton's Batman that pisses me off to no end: Batman shoots his Batwing Batmachine guns at the Joker, MISSES a guy that is standing perfectly still, and then gets taken out by a Carrot Top prop gun? No, sorry, that's fucking lame.

it's undeniable that Bay is a much more interesting director than Nolan

Oh, I deny that. I deny it like a motherfucker.

I've seen enough of Bay to know that I've never seen an interesting visual shot in anything he's done. You say it yourself -- he's shooting a beer commercial. When was the last time a beer commercial was interesting? Never. Take Transformers for example: the supposedly super-cool special effects were muddy, blurry, incomprehensible. It just looked like someone had CGI diarrhea all over the screen and then lit their fart for a big explosion.

I think matteo is the one with the inferiority complex when it comes to Nolan's movies. Yes, Insomnia was not great (I found it largely dull), but the focus of that movie was not Robin Williams as a villain, just as the focus of Batman Begins was not Bruce Wayne is a Ninja (I don't think the martial art he was doing was ninjitsu anyway), nor was the focus in The Prestige on David Bowie. Picking out those minor elements and claiming that they are the center of the film is completely disingenuous.
posted by Saxon Kane at 5:50 PM on July 7, 2008


I want to be clear here that I believe Michael Bay makes not just fun movies but deeply stupid ones

Do you geniuses apply the same ridiculous criteria to the source material? Are seriously trying to tell me that when you watched Transformers or Batman or read comic books as a kid that you said to yourself "Fuck this, the science is all bad. I can't believe this dude is flexing his chest. Trash!"?

And someone's ludicrous comment about being upset that shit exploded in flames in space in Armageddon? Hey, you wanna apply that criticism to Star Wars? Or is Star Wars exempt for some reason?

Come on, he makes COMIC BOOK MOVIES, whether they are based on actual comics or not. The fact that you grew up and demand more from your comics than you did when you were 12 does mean that Micheal Bay shouldn't be making films that appeal to today's 12 year olds. YOU GOT OLD..admit it.
posted by spicynuts at 5:56 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Oh my god what have I done!?!
posted by Surfyournut at 5:58 PM on July 7, 2008


When was the last time a beer commercial was interesting? Never.

I liked this one. And this one.

(And while I generally think Michael Bay's movies are awful, I have to say I found Transformers more entertaining than Batman Begins).
posted by martinrebas at 6:02 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


That is unbelievably fucking sad.

No, kids dying from lack of water or medicine is unbelievably fucking sad. Liking a Michael Bay enough to pay to watch his movies? That's just common.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:05 PM on July 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


You mean to tell me that this thread has gone for 78 posts and I am the first guy to mention his AWESOME television commercial for Verizon FiOS?

AWESOME.
posted by briank at 6:13 PM on July 7, 2008 [4 favorites]


it's undeniable that Bay is a much more interesting director than Nolan

Gail Wynand to the white courtsey phone.

And while the microwave emitter in Batman Begins was, as jkaczor points out, just a wee bit implausible

It was embarrassingly dumb. It was easily the stupidest of a few stupid things in what was an imperfect but totally decent Batman flick. I hated the microwave emitter thing. I hated that they made Jim Gordon a clown. There were other things. But it was not even comparable to the mess of Batman Forever or Batman & Robin. Those two were excrement.
posted by cortex at 6:18 PM on July 7, 2008


If wikipedia is to be trusted, the pressure at the bottom of the Mariana Trench is 108.6 MPa. According to the phase diagram of water, it looks like the water could actually get as cold as -7º C before freezing, so it isn't inherently stupid to suggest that the water at the bottom of the ocean is below freezing, just wrong.
posted by Pyry at 6:19 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


I have blissfully avoided Transformers and have nothing to contribute on the execution of the film, but I would like to point out one thing: The Mariana Trench (aka Mariana's Trench) is pretty deep. At the bottom, the pressure is around 110 megaPascals - about a thousand times the pressure at the surface of the sea.

Bear with me for a moment. At great pressures, water remains liquid at in a range a little colder than we're used to, not unlike the way we can get liquid carbon dioxide at high pressures. Just eyeballing off of a graph gives me about 260 K as a freezing point, which is perhaps a whopping thirteen degrees Celsius under the normal freezing point at standard pressure. Thus, you could go down there and have sub-freezing (to our normal experience) temperatures and still have liquid water. Slushy, with various forms of ice we're not used to, but still liquid. In this one sole and lonely case, Bay and his crack team of advisors have not gotten the science wrong - perhaps through sheer dumb luck.

Calculations indicate that a plate of beans is solid down there, too.
posted by adipocere at 6:19 PM on July 7, 2008


Jinx.
posted by adipocere at 6:20 PM on July 7, 2008


Wha? I love genre films. I love any film that's well written.

Could you give an example of a well writen genre film, or just a genre film you think was good. Just curious.
posted by nola at 6:21 PM on July 7, 2008


just as the focus of Batman Begins was not Bruce Wayne is a Ninja (I don't think the martial art he was doing was ninjitsu anyway)

Actually they specifically said it was.

If wikipedia is to be trusted, the pressure at the bottom of the Mariana Trench is 108.6 MPa. According to the phase diagram of water, it looks like the water could actually get as cold as -7º C before freezing, so it isn't inherently stupid to suggest that the water at the bottom of the ocean is below freezing, just wrong.

That's interesting. Ordinarily, as pressure goes up, the freezing/melting point goes up but it looks like water has a strange 'kink' in right around 100/200 MPa

Anyway, is it really wrong? I mean normally when people say "below freezing" they mean "Below 0° C", and also "below the freezing point of water." But in this case they only meant "Below 0° C, but not below the local freezing point of water, due to the pressure." I'm not really even sure I'd call that wrong.

When is saw the movie, I assumed they just meant temperature. There were a lot of amazingly dumb things in that movie, though.
posted by delmoi at 6:42 PM on July 7, 2008


his AWESOME television commercial for Verizon FiOS

Shit. Now I forgive the guy because he has a sense of humor about himself.

Uwe Boll, not so much.
posted by fungible at 6:43 PM on July 7, 2008


Do you geniuses apply the same ridiculous criteria to the source material?

There's a difference between fantastic and just plain fucking stupid. Nolan's movies, for whatever flaws, at least are internally consistent and based on interesting ideas. Bay's films are the equivalent of watching two cro-magnons beat each other over the head with clubs.

The fact that you grew up and demand more from your comics than you did when you were 12 does [not] mean that Micheal Bay shouldn't be making films that appeal to today's 12 year olds.

No, it doesn't. Have fun watching them with the other 12 yr olds. I, however, haven't been 12 for 20 years, so I won't be joining you. Just as I no longer watch Transformers and read the same comics that I did when I was 12, I am no longer amused by many (but not all) of the things that entertained me when I was 12.
posted by Saxon Kane at 6:48 PM on July 7, 2008


never before have I felt such a need to post the following:

tl;dr
posted by wendell at 6:48 PM on July 7, 2008


tkchrist: So what you're saying is, you absolutely agree with this guy?
posted by JHarris at 6:51 PM on July 7, 2008


Oh, and Saxon Kane is incorrect, but only because Michael Bay movies are dumber than 12-year-olds. The Transformer cartoon show, resizing robots and all, was more intelligent than the Transformers live action/CGI movie.

Bay tried to manipulate the audience so blatantly with Transformers that he should be prosecuted for molestation. "Ridiculous government salary" indeed.
posted by JHarris at 6:58 PM on July 7, 2008


Some of you will be receiving invitations to join my Church of Batman, Scientist. Most of you won't. I have heard so many heathen opinions on this thread that I am thinking it may be time for batjihad.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:05 PM on July 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


When was the last time a beer commercial was interesting?
Right about the time Errol Morris stopped making them

Also, I happen to consider myself as having pretty good taste in movies, and most people who know me would agree. Right up until I mention that Bad Boys 2 is one of my all time favorite movies. I would never go so far as to try and change the mind of someone who thought it was a shit movie. But to the "swing voters" out there, i'll say this. It's no worse than either of the Charlie's Angels movies, and better than 85% of the Lethal Weapon and Die Hard sequels. It's better than everything Nicolas Cage has done since Leaving Las Vegas, and quite possibly the only movie outside of Do The Right Thing in which Martin Lawrence doesn't completely embarrass himself and everyone within a 2 mile radius. In a world where Point Break and Road House can be enjoyed without guilt, then the only I can find with Bad Boys 2 is that they cast Henry Rollins in a role that I'm pretty sure Patrick Swayze was available for.

But then again, I think Days of Thunder is an underrated gem, so it's entirely possible that I'm an unreliable witness.
posted by billyfleetwood at 7:18 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Could you give an example of a well writen genre film, or just a genre film you think was good. Just curious.

There are gazillions of them. Cat People, Blade Runner, just about any Hitchcock movie, the Kingdom, Miller's Crossing, Unforgiven, the Killing, Easy Rider... Some of the best films ever made are genre films. Hell, Men In Black is a better-written genre film than BB as is Darkman and Buckaroo Banzai. Most will disagree but I'd say Ang Lee (a director who I think usually makes drivel) made a better genre film with his Hulk than Nolan did with Batman Begins--at the very least the plot, on a micro level, was far more unpredictable than BB.
posted by dobbs at 7:21 PM on July 7, 2008


I used to be of the opinion that handing Brett Ratner the keys to the X-Men franchise was the most colossal uninvited finger up the ass a movie franchise ever had. But Michael Bay following Batman Begins - that's a dry cock up the ass if I ever heard of one.
posted by Ber at 7:21 PM on July 7, 2008


the Robert Frank flag shot in Armageddon is a personal favorite

Seriously, Matteo, that almost made me cry that you wrote that. That shot was all over NY for a couple years to advertise a huge Frank show. I think it went to LA too. So, the fact that he saw it, ripped it off, and gave it almost exactly the opppsite feeling of one of the greatest photographers of all time is made me literally snarl when I saw it in the theater.

Snarl.
posted by lumpenprole at 7:24 PM on July 7, 2008


tkchrist: So what you're saying is, you absolutely agree with this guy?

I dunno. I got bored 15 seconds into it. I'm I don't.

But I do know this. Guys like Bay, or Oprah, or Bono, (or whatever lame popular artist the arm chair critic think sucks) will accomplish more with their lives and will probably have more fun than 99% of the goofballs who spend hours tippy tapping on the internet about how much everything sucks.

Not because of the money. But becuase they are doers. Not bitchers. Sucky or not. And they don't care what the fuck a bunch of random nerds thinks.

Again I don't like his movies. But then again since I know this I don't GO to them.
posted by tkchrist at 7:28 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


I loved The Island (plagiarism and all) so there.
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 7:32 PM on July 7, 2008


And they don't care what the fuck a bunch of random nerds thinks.

Just like you, you tiger-wrestling hardass.
posted by lumpenprole at 7:34 PM on July 7, 2008


Man, I just about get a hard on with an American flag waving off the end every time someone mentions that greatest of all great films, Buckaroo motherfucking Banzai.

I enjoyed Transformers more than Batman Begins. Now I am apparently a moron. The only reason I expect to enjoy The Dark Knight is because of Heath Ledger's creepy Joker, and I love Christian Bale. Equilibrium was the shit. The beginning of Transformers, when Blackout trashes the base, was the closes thing to a MechWarrior movie I ever expect to see.

I love guys like Bay. As his FiOS commercial shows, he just plain has fun being who he is. He takes it TO THE MAX and makes no apologies, and I salute that.
posted by adamdschneider at 7:48 PM on July 7, 2008


Michael Bay is responsible for Armageddon? The Rock? Bad Boys?

[ALERTS THE DEEJ WITH SECRET MESSAGE: "Number of the Beast! Number of the Beast!"]
posted by humannaire at 7:59 PM on July 7, 2008


I just realized that I've seen every Michael Bay movie, and most of them more than once. Hmm, the only thing I really don't like about Bay films is the camerawork during action scenes. I can always tell a Bay movie by that camerawork. Just takes me right out of the movie. Also, some of them (Pearl Harbor) are way too long. But other than that, I like his movies, they give me a nice rush and a feeling that I have been entertained. Except for Bad Boys II.
posted by Danila at 8:03 PM on July 7, 2008


It's no worse than either of the Charlie's Angels movies, and better than 85% of the Lethal Weapon and Die Hard sequels. It's better than everything Nicolas Cage has done since Leaving Las Vegas, and quite possibly the only movie outside of Do The Right Thing in which Martin Lawrence doesn't completely embarrass himself and everyone within a 2 mile radius.

None of those things is a compliment.

Equilibrium was the shit.

FTFY
Yes, cool action sequences. Everything else about it was derivative crap. And I, too, love Christian Bale.

The beginning of Transformers, when Blackout trashes the base, was the closes thing to a MechWarrior movie I ever expect to see.

And right after that was when the movie went from mildly entertaining to turdlicious.

Guys like Bay, or Oprah, or Bono, (or whatever lame popular artist the arm chair critic think sucks) will accomplish more with their lives and will probably have more fun than 99% of the goofballs who spend hours tippy tapping on the internet about how much everything sucks.

Not because of the money. But becuase they are doers. Not bitchers. Sucky or not. And they don't care what the fuck a bunch of random nerds thinks.


Oh my god, you are just soooo COOL! Hey, while you're sitting there tippy tapping on the internet about how lame other people are for tippy tapping on the internet, perhaps you should buy a big mirror so you can see yourself. But, perhaps you would get sucked into a black hole of unintended irony.

And I'll be waiting for tkchrist's new blog about how cool everything is, since he apparently is just too damn much of a doer to waste time on what SUX!
posted by Saxon Kane at 8:06 PM on July 7, 2008 [2 favorites]


So, the consensus is: Michael Bay, he's not so good.
posted by oddman at 8:14 PM on July 7, 2008



No, it doesn't. Have fun watching them with the other 12 yr olds. I, however, haven't been 12 for 20 years, so I won't be joining you. Just as I no longer watch Transformers and read the same comics that I did when I was 12, I am no longer amused by many (but not all) of the things that entertained me when I was 12.


EXACTLY! These movies are NOT AIMED AT YOU. So why all the hate? Are you saying Michael Bay is not allowed to make movies aimed at 12 year olds? Why are you expecting to be entertained by Transformers? It is a movie for 12 year olds based on a cartoon for 12 year olds. WTF???
posted by spicynuts at 8:48 PM on July 7, 2008


Just because it's aimed at dumb kids doesn't mean adults need to be apologists for it. Crap is crap is crap.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:07 PM on July 7, 2008


Transformers: Rated PG-13

The Island: Rated PG-13

Bad Boys II: Rated R

Pearl Harbor: Rated PG-13

Armageddon: Rated PG-13

The Rock: Rated R

Bad Boys: Rated R

So, according to the MPAA, all of his movies contain material at least geared for people over 13, and 3/7 he's directed are for age 17+

But of course, that's not the point. His movies are NOT AIMED AT 12 YR OLDS. They are AIMED AT PEOPLE WITH THE COGNITIVE CAPACITIES OF 12 YR OLDS. If he made movies EXCLUSIVELY aimed at 12 yr olds, he would be doing nothing above a PG rating.
posted by Saxon Kane at 9:08 PM on July 7, 2008


I'm pretty sure it's...Mariana Trench.

How do you know my girlfriend?
posted by turgid dahlia at 9:19 PM on July 7, 2008


[ALERTS THE DEEJ WITH SECRET MESSAGE: "Number of the Beast! Number of the Beast!"]
posted by humannaire


The Deej doesn't live here anymore. ;)
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 9:25 PM on July 7, 2008


I would really, really, really, really, really, really like to see Michael Bay direct an old black and white silent movie, using only the technology available at the time.

That is all.
posted by davejay at 9:42 PM on July 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


If he made movies EXCLUSIVELY aimed at 12 yr olds, he would be doing nothing above a PG rating.

That's right, because 12 year olds only want to see things adults have marked "OK" for them. They never want to see those cooler PG-13 and R rated movies.

Also you can't prove your point by citing MPAA ratings. Just saying.
posted by null terminated at 10:29 PM on July 7, 2008


I harbor no ill will towards Mr. Bay, and in fact I think my first exposure to his work was being pleasantly surprised at how entertaining the Transformers movie was. I mean really - it was actually watchable...a huge leap over the comic books or cartoons (IMO). My four-year-old loves the comics, and I love reading them to him, but they're awful. Mr. Bay and his team wrought something fairly wonderful out of a vacuum.
posted by dylanjames at 11:09 PM on July 7, 2008


Mr. Bay and his team wrought something fairly wonderful out of a vacuum.

And then it rained a fire of flying pigs and the snowballs of hell all got gay married.
posted by crossoverman at 11:40 PM on July 7, 2008


(And while I generally think Michael Bay's movies are awful, I have to say I found Transformers more entertaining than Batman Begins).

Wow. Just wow.

*weeps openly for humanity*
posted by zardoz at 4:33 AM on July 8, 2008


Thank you Trey Parker:

"I miss you more than Michael Bay missed the mark,
When he made Pearl Harbor.
I miss you more than that movie missed the point,
And that’s an awful lot .
And now, now you've gone away,
And all I'm trying to say,
Is Pearl Harbor sucked and I miss you"
posted by infobomb at 4:57 AM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: AIMED AT PEOPLE WITH THE COGNITIVE CAPACITIES OF 12 YR OLDS

:(
posted by adamdschneider at 6:05 AM on July 8, 2008


Congratulations on a master Bay shun.
posted by Eideteker at 7:31 AM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


I really wish I could write like a Michael Bay movie. Big, loud, earnest. Logic gets tied up and locked in the trunk on the way to a shallow grave in Jersey while made-men Explosions, Punching, and their sister Jugs do their thing in the front seat.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 8:39 AM on July 8, 2008


The thing I dislike about almost all recent action films is that the over-reliance on CGI sucks the suspense right out of the action scenes. You know that the guy hanging on to a crumbling cliff face by his pinkie is in no danger at all, you know he is in a studio in front of a big green wall with a bunch of bearded grips and so forth. Watch Raiders of the Lost Ark, and you're like "Holy shit! He is hanging on to a Nazi Benz truck by the hood ornament, this can't end well!" Watch a newer action movie and you (or I, anyway) feel nothing. There is no feeling of jeopardy, and this is because of the over-reliance on technology. Plus all those whip pans and jump cuts make it really hard to figure out exactly what is going on in the first place.
posted by Mister_A at 9:02 AM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


"It's a pity Micheal Bay can't transform into a director who can direct a movie"
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:26 AM on July 8, 2008


I have a problem with how poorly made the movie is.

Ok, could you define that, please? What was poorly made about the movie that ruined it for you? On this point, I'm not looking to argue, just curious.


Principally, it's how often I'm completely jarred from the film. Broken down into pieces, it's bad writing, bad shot composition, sloppy editing, cliched music direction, racism, pandering and product placement.

Since it was based on one of my best loved childhood franchises, I downloaded and watched Transformers, to my chagrin. My only saving grace is that I did not put any money in Bay's filthy pocket. So someone at work asked me just yesterday what I hated about Transformers. The fact is that i've forgotten many of the details that drove me up the wall while watching it, but here's what I remembered just off the top of my head:

The only black Autobot is the only Autobot that dies.
Said autobot has 3 lines of dialogue in the movie, one of which is "What's up, bitches?"
There is a Mountain Dew transformer which gets more screen time than Megatron.
Bumblebee can't talk during the whole movie. They even take time to explain that his robot voice box is physically broken. Just at the end of a huge battle which leaves Bumblebee unable to move he speaks for no discernible reason.
Bernie Mac has his entire lot of cars heavily damaged and responds to this by selling Shia LeBeouf a car cheaply. (Yes, I know he wanted the car off his lot since it did the damage, but this is stupid beyond belief anyway.) That bumblebee's plan to infiltrate the kid's life worked this way is absurd.
Shia Lebeouf and his 17-going-on-35 year old new girlfriend make out on the hood of bumblebee, which is odd. But it's not nearly as odd as realizing that what you thought was a voiceover from optimus prime was actually prime delivering a speech to the two kids while he watches them make out.
Every joke in the movie wasn't funny.
There was this really impressive transformer fight that happened where they went rolling down the street, but you couldn't see a portion of the fight because they rolled (in slow motion) behind some screaming woman with gigantic breasts.

These things completely pull me out of the movie, among many other incredibly stupid things that ruin every single movie he makes. That people can ignore or even not notice these things is fine. But I'm perfectly within reason to think that these things ruin his movies since when they happen I immediately stop paying attention to the movie to instead rack my brain about how any of that shit even makes sense.

To apply this logic to Armageddon, I'll turn to a pretty amazing little blog that was once linked here. The Criterion Contraption on Armageddon.
Michael Bay and his cinematographer John Schwartzman made the jump from advertising to features, and they brought that sensibility with them. What you get is perfect framing, beautiful photography, but what's actually on-screen is pure wish-fulfillment in a way that's completely divorced from narrative. Like this: [screen cap from the movie] That's the end shot of a love scene between Ben Affleck and Liv Tyler. It's lovely, but it doesn't have any basis whatsoever in reality. Where is the house they've driven to? Does it belong to either character? Why have they strung Christmas lights in the tree? When did they do this? Are we really meant to believe that A.J., a roughneck who works on oil rigs, drives a cute little BMW Z3 when he's on dry land? You can take nearly any frame in this movie and pick it apart in this way, but that presupposes that the goal of this film is to tell a story, and I don't think that's true.
This guy then goes on to give it his absolute best effort to justify these movies, and he does a marvelous job at it, to be frank. But it depends on that last sentence: these movies are not supposed to tell a story. They're supposed to completely ignore a story, according to him, in favor of product placement and visuals. Where I disagree with him is that the end result is not a narrativeless avant garde film piece. It's just a really bad story with sumptuous but totally artless and vacuous cinematography. It's the Thomas Kinkade of film. Jesus, I feel like I've written this comment before. I'll have to go through my history.
posted by shmegegge at 9:40 AM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


It's the Thomas Kinkade of film.

Ha!
posted by cortex at 10:01 AM on July 8, 2008


Also, shmegegge, thanks for reminding me of Criterion Contraption. I enjoyed the hell out of it when I first found out about it, and I had since forgotten it.
posted by cortex at 10:36 AM on July 8, 2008


yeah, that's one hell of a blog.
posted by shmegegge at 10:38 AM on July 8, 2008


You guys. A giant robot pisses all over John Turturro. What the fuck else could you possibly want?

Okay, but seriously, I would watch In the Name of the King again--yes, again--before rewatching Transformers. If only for Burt Reynolds' death scene, where I'm pretty sure he might have actually died. Or Matthew Lillard's performance, which just makes the viewer want to die.
posted by Skot at 12:04 PM on July 8, 2008


thanks for reminding me of Criterion Contraption

My first look at it -- also enjoying it a lot -- thanks!
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 3:36 PM on July 8, 2008


hahaha, this is brilliant
posted by chairmanwow at 6:23 AM on July 11, 2008


The Deej doesn't live here anymore.

My work is done.
posted by humannaire at 1:25 PM on July 13, 2008


The Deej doesn't live here anymore.

My work is done.


Bwahahahaaa!!! You are so EVIL!!!! But I'm sure you have bad points too.
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 7:38 AM on July 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


I always wondered if Megatron wouldn't have been so mean if he just got a massage or something to loosen up.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:44 AM on July 14, 2008


A missed opportunity for Michael Bay: when a Transformer gets killed, shouldn't it blow up?
posted by russilwvong at 10:21 AM on July 16, 2008


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