Starring: Hailee Steinfeld, Dylan O’Brien, Angela Bassett , Justin Theroux , John Cena, Jorge Lendeborg, Jr., John Ortiz, Jason Drucker, Pamela Adlon, Peter Cullen
Written By: Christina Hodson
Directed By: Travis Knight
Buy On Amazon.com
I had no intentions of seeing Bumblebee, mainly because I was sick of what Michael Bay was doing with it. He was still a producer for the movie but at least someone else directed Bumblebee. Surprisingly, Bumblebee ended up being the best live action Transformers movie to date.
In 1987, B-127/Bumblebee (Dylan O’Brien) crash lands on Earth, after just escaping a battle on Cybertron. He’s tasked by Optimus Prime (Peter Cullen) with setting up a base for the Autobot resistance so they can regroup. His landing interrupts a military training exercise and Colonel Jack Burns (John Cena) thinks he’s hostile and begins hunting the Autobot. Meanwhile, Bumblebee encounters a teenage girl Charlie (Hailee Steinfeld) who finds him and quickly bonds with the autobot. She helps him take on two Decepticons, that followed Bumblebee with trying to give up the location of the remaining Autobots.
Bumblebee was a lot of fun to watch and that opening scene on Cybertron was really cool & awesome. I wish it was longer but not to the point where it was just a full fledge action movie. What they did was the right balance of things. The movie reminded me of E.T., Iron Giant, and other movies like that. You had the backstory of the autobots a little, but then focused on a new human to interact with Bumblebee. I’m still a bit confused if this is a stand-alone movie, a reboot or a prequel before the first Transformers movie that Bay directed. If that’s the case, doesn’t that scene where they autobots crash land on Earth seem..redundant or out of place now?
Some people had issues with John Cena’s character but I actually didn’t mind his character. He had a reason to be mad at Bumblebee for interrupting and hurting his men, by accident but still. It was good to see he had a change of heart though. Hailee was excellent and her character wasn’t annoying or anything. She wasn’t all screaming and shouting for Bumblebee like Shia was doing for 3 movies. Plus, she’s a Smiths fan or at least the character was. The music was a bit much with trying to make you feel like you were in the 80s. I honestly forgot the movie takes places in the 80s still. Not sure what they could have done differently, perhaps everybody had bad hair, British Knights shoes, slap on bracelets and showed people collecting Garbage Pail Kids cards, then maybe I’d believe it. The movie was trying to capitalize on the Stranger Things appeal with the 80s but not sure it’s worked. I loved the soundtrack, don’t get me wrong, but felt like they hit you over the head with it.
The look of the Transformers were a lot better, in fact so much better than you can tell which Transformer was who. The other Transformers movies, all the Autobots and Decepticons all looked alike and was hard to tell who was fighting who at times. I liked that they kept the story simple and only had 2 or 3 Decepticons after Bumblebee. Despite the special effects being great for this, the story is the important part and the script isn’t awkward either. The actors were able to perform and not be so wooden because the script wasn’t so shitty or not thought-out.
The special features for Bumblebee are on the Blu-Ray disc so if you watch it on 4k, you have to switch discs which is kind of annoying. The deleted and extended scenes were pretty good, which was almost 20 minutes. There was a funny joke about the Gobots in there, plus a lot of scenes with Charlie mostly. There’s actually a lot of very kiddie like scenes in there that I’m really happy they didn’t add in the movie. It would have made the movie feel cheesy then. There’s 9 minutes of “outtakes,” which seems like they were forced a bit or maybe John Cena still felt like he was in a Judd Apatow movie? Bringing Bumblebee to the Big Screen featurettes were pretty good and gave you a nice background on the making of the movie. They also talked about bringing those designs back to the original cartoon which I’m so happy they went that route.
Bumblebee is an entertaining, E.T.-like Transformers movie where it’s action-packed but has a heart as well. The crap that made the majority of the Transformers movies is out the window and the franchise has started fresh. Which means, you should give Bumblebee a shot because it’s worth seeing just for the opening Cybertron sequence.
Sector 7 Archive
Deleted and Extended Scenes
Bee Vision: The Transformers Robots of Cybertron
Bringing Bumblebee to the Big Screen
The Story of Bumblebee
The Stars Align
Bumblebee Goes Back to G1
Back to the Beetle
California Cruisin’ Down Memory Lane
Codec: HEVC / H.265
Resolution: Upscaled 4K (2160p)
HDR: Dolby Vision + HDR10
Aspect ratio: 1.78:1
Original aspect ratio: 1.85:1
English: Dolby Atmos
English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1
Czech: Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
French: Dolby Digital 5.1
French (Canada): Dolby Digital 5.1
Italian: Dolby Digital 5.1
Hungarian: Dolby Digital 5.1
Polish: Dolby Digital 5.1
Portuguese: Dolby Digital 5.1
Russian: Dolby Digital 5.1
Thai: Dolby Digital 5.1
Turkish: Dolby Digital 5.1
English, English SDH, French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Arabic, Cantonese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Hindi, Hungarian, Icelandic, Korean, Malay, Mandarin (Simplified), Norwegian, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Slovak, Swedish, Thai, Turkish
Bottom Line: One of the best Transformers movies
Running Time: 114 mins