Transformers Rise of the Beasts review: Director Steven Caple Jr. delivers a crowd-pleasing experience with Transformers: Rise of the Beasts. In a franchise that has seen its fair share of sequels and reboots, this latest installment manages to captivate and satisfy. The film proves that even a tired series can still surprise audiences, reminiscent of the phenomenon seen in Fast Five. With an intriguing blend of nostalgia and fresh elements, Caple Jr. crafts an unexpectedly satisfying blockbuster that reignites the Transformers universe.
Transformers Rise of the Beasts review:
Transformers: Rise of the Beasts introduces the Maximals, a new addition to the series. These alien robots, distinct from the Autobots, transform into impressive mechanical animals, adding a new layer of excitement. Led by the formidable Optimus Primal (voiced by Ron Perlman), the Maximals aim to protect a transwarp key, a sought-after artifact with the power to open a wormhole. Their mission becomes crucial as they face the menacing Scourge (voiced by Peter Dinklage), who seeks to summon his master, Unicron, the planet eater. Set in 1994, amidst the Autobots’ desire to return home, the story takes place after the events of Bumblebee and before the 2007 movie, offering fans a standalone adventure that seamlessly blends with the franchise’s timeline.
The human characters bring depth and emotion to the narrative. Noah Diaz is a relatable and endearing ex-soldier facing personal struggles, including caring for his ailing brother. Ramos’s performance, coupled with a heartfelt script, infuses the film with a genuine emotional core beyond the usual generic summer movie fare. Joining Noah is the nerdy intern Elena (Dominique Fishback), who unwittingly becomes entangled in the Maximals’ quest after discovering the transwarp key. Together, they embark on an oversized adventure that promises excitement and danger.
Transformers: Rise of the Beasts strikes a balance between nostalgia and innovation, breathing new life into the beloved franchise. With captivating action sequences, memorable characters, and unexpected twists, Director Steven Caple Jr. successfully rejuvenates the Transformers series, providing audiences with a surprisingly satisfying blockbuster experience.
Adding a burst of personality to the film are the Autobots themselves. Arcee (voiced by Liza Koshy) brings charm, while the fan-favorite Bumblebee appears in a smaller, cuter form than his original design in the 2007 movie. Mirage, voiced by the irreverent Pete Davidson, steals the show with his hilarious lines, almost as if he was given free rein to riff on the script. And then there’s the iconic Optimus Prime (voiced by Peter Cullen), whose commanding baritone has been synonymous with the character since the 80s.
The Rise of the Beasts presents a refreshing take on Optimus Prime, depicting a jaded and raw version of the leader. Still recovering from the civil war that forced the Autobots to leave Cybertron, this Optimus is impulsive and indifferent to humans, placing a higher priority on saving his people than on being a benevolent leader. While the film attempts to draw parallels between Optimus and Noah, the connection feels forced but well-intentioned.
The Rise of the Beasts delivers the familiar escapism of a crowd-pleasing, save-the-day action flick, and it does so with control and coherence—qualities that are often lacking in today’s films. Expect more funny one-liners than anticipated and relish in the spectacle of giant robots battling it out (the visual effects and fight choreography continue to impress). The formulaic final showdown between the Maximals, Autobots, and their enemies is satisfyingly structured, avoiding the unfocused and bloated blur seen in many MCU-style films. And as for the question of setting up another cinematic universe, the answer is a resounding yes, but with unexpected twists.
In an unconventional signing off, I must say that throughout The Rise of the Beasts, a recurring thought kept resonating with me. In 2023, I endured Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania, struggled through Shazam!
Fury of the Gods, reveled in the thrills of John Wick: Chapter 4, delighted in Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, and survived the underwhelming The Little Mermaid. I managed to avoid Fast X, eagerly awaited Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3, marveled at the visual splendor of Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, and had a blast with Transformers: The Rise of the Beasts. Looking ahead at The Flash, Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part 1, and beyond, it is evident that Hollywood, on the big screen, has returned to its full strength in this post-pandemic world. The movies are back, and they’re roaring with excitement once again.