When Paramount started teasing the arrival of Transformers: Rise of the Beasts, I felt as if I was back in the 90s, eagerly waiting for the Beast Wars slot on TV while munching on snacks. I could still remember looking for Cheetor in every episode and how much I questioned why they’d include a rat in the show. It’s this buildup that made me expect a lot from the seventh Transformers movie, but after watching it, all I could say is that it was “okay” — not the best but definitely not the worst movie in my honest opinion. I’d still say it’s a good family movie for Transformers fans who want to introduce the Autobots to their kids (provided they’re 13 years old and above) as it gives off a decent amount of nostalgia for older viewers, though.
In case you’re wondering why, here’s what I can say about the latest installment in the Transformers universe, minus the big spoilers:
Same as the previous ones, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts takes us on a thrilling ride that appeals to the nostalgia of 80s/90s kids while introducing a fresh twist to the beloved franchise. As a fan of the original Beast Wars series, I was excited to see the inclusion of the Maximals, but I must admit, I wished there were more scenes or even a bigger role featuring these iconic characters. Their introduction was also quite abrupt in my opinion, but I’d have to commend their effects team for making the Maximals look way more awesome than their original look. The combination of fur and machines looked sick! Nevertheless, the film manages to captivate with its explosive action and impressive CGI, showcasing the ongoing battle between Autobots and Terrorcons.
While it may not be the strongest entry in the franchise, it still delivers an action-packed yet highly predictable storyline — humans and Autobots team up, the search for something, something gets stolen, a dramatic appeal, twists you may probably already be expecting, and a hook to keep you wanting to see more movies. The action sequences are grand in scale, providing catchy visuals that immerse the audience in the Transformers universe. The experience was made better as I watched the premiere on SM Cinema’s IMAX Theater! I felt the booms and transformation sound effects to the core.
Transformers staples Optimus Prime (voiced by Peter Cullen) and Bumblebee returns, along with two-wheeled motorcycle-turned-sharpshooting robot Arcee (voiced by Liza Koshy), and a couple more Autobots that may come as a surprisie. I won’t be naming the Maximals but as the posters show, expect Optimus Primal (voiced by Ron Perlman) and Airazor (voiced by Michelle Yeoh). They’re now up against the Terrorcons, headed by Scourge, which was amazingly voiced by Peter Dinklage.
As for the humans, I’m not a fan of the sad backstory, but it’s a decent reason for a human to team up with random alien robots so I won’t be hating on it. The Noah (Anthony Ramos) and Mirage (voiced by Pete Davidson) duo worked well, giving viewers a breath of fresh air from the usual Optimus Prime-Bumblebee or Bumblebee-human pairing. I’m also glad they introduced Elena (Dominique Fishback), a female museum intern and history buff who didn’t have to look unrealistically sexy throughout the entire duration of the film. IYKYK.
The fast-paced nature of the film’s narrative can be both a pro and a con. While it keeps the adrenaline pumping and maintains a brisk pace, it may leave some viewers craving more moments of character development. Optimus Prime consistently self-blaming himself was almost annoying, in all honesty. While the film introduces intriguing new Transformers, there may be missed opportunities to fully explore their backgrounds and motivations. Maybe something the future movies could explore.
Towards the end of the film, there’s an Easter egg that hints at future possibilities, leaving the audience excited about what lies ahead for the Transformers franchise. Even though the movie may not be the cream of the crop, this intriguing twist adds an element of anticipation for what’s to come, ensuring fans will leave the theater hypothesizing what’s next.
Transformers: Rise of the Beasts is now showing in 2D and 3D in SM Cinemas nationwide. For the ultimate Transformers experience, I highly recommend watching it on IMAX. The larger-than-life screen and immersive sound system amplify the action, making you feel like you’re right in the middle of the battle. They also have comfortable seats to help you stay relaxed throughout the 2-hour movie. Don’t forget to grab some Snacktime popcorn and drinks to complete the movie-watching experience, too!
Will I still recommend that you watch it? Yes, I will, just so you can complete the Transformers storyline. Just don’t have high hopes and expectations!