“Bumblebee:” Early Thoughts

Gavin Akehurst, Student Journalist

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There have been five movies based off of robots that turn into vehicles known as Transformers, each of which somehow managed to be worse than its predecessor. Each of these movies were directed by Michael Bay, have an obscene amount of CGI and explosions, and contain little to no plot or character development at all. However, after the new trailer dropped on Monday for “Bumblebee,” I have hope that this movie, directed by Travis Knight, will break the streak of disappointments know as the “Transformers” franchise.

From what we know, the movie takes place in 1987, 20 years before the events of the very first movie in the franchise. Bumblebee, a yellow Transformer who turns into a Volkswagen beetle, is on Earth attempting to keep Earth safe from the evil Decepticons while a war between the Autobots and Decepticons rages on their home planet of Cybertron.

The main character, other than Bumblebee, is a young woman named Charlie Watson (Hailee Steinfeld). She’s just starting off on her own when she buys the car that turns out to be Bumblebee in disguise. Little of her and Bumblebee is shown in the trailer, but from what we can see their relationship seems to be funny and heartwarming. It’s a very different pace than Bay’s barely dressed girls with absolutely no character at all, and I think it is a step in the right direction.

Despite my liking of the relationship between Bumblebee and Watson, I’ve always felt that there was not enough Transformers action. The previous films focused more on the boring, unrealistic human drama. “Bumblebee” seems to focus a lot more on the robots in disguise, as it shows a lot of footage on Cybertron itself (something we didn’t see in the first five). Beyond that, all the Transformers resemble their appearances from the awesome 80s cartoon. While the last movies made the robots look like a CGI nightmare, these newer editions are cleaner and  better looking overall.

If “Bumblebee” is as good as the most recent trailer has shown, then it will be a great movie and a big success. “Bumblebee” is in theaters December 21st, 2018.

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