Transformers: Dark of the Moon is a full on robot orgy of violence and destruction.
Julian Roman - MovieWeb
Here Bay makes his best, most flexible use yet of all the flamboyant bigness at his command: Computer-drawn characters and human actors seem to occupy the same narrative for once.
Lisa Schwarzbaum - Entertainment Weekly
"Transformers: Dark of the Moon" is among Mr. Bay's best movies and by far the best 3-D sequel ever made about gigantic toys from outer space.
A.O. Scott - New York Times
A vague story is cobbled together around the increasingly mind-numbing special effects and convoluted action sequences. But by the end of the 2 1/2-hour-plus slog, it's hard to even remember where it began.
Claudia Puig - USA Today
What does Optimus Prime see in the whiny Sam Witwicky? Why do both the Autobots and Decepticons keep departing Earth, only to reappear a few scenes later? And what is the evolutionary advantage of pretending to be a car, anyway?
Mark Jenkins - Washington Post
The more action sequences, locations, actors, historical events, machines, effects, monosyllables, weapons, and American-flag close-ups the movie shoves in its mouth and ours, the less we're able to taste.
Wesley Morris - Boston Globe
Your brain cells perish by the thousands, their howls of agony lost to the cacophony inside your skull. Vast quantities of money, roughly equal to the GDP of Tonga, travel from America's wallets into the coffers of Paramount.
Dan Kois - Village Voice
Bay misses every opportunity to make something interesting out of his characters; instead, he's content to spend his enormous budget on grinding destruction so generic and visually convoluted, it's often hard to tell who we're supposed to be rooting for.
Elizabeth Weitzman - New York Daily News
At 157 minutes, "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" isn't just a movie. It's a sentence.
John Anderson - Wall Street Journal
Bay provides his usual Bayisms: bloated close-ups, manly slo-mo, visual hyperbole and glamour shots of a hot babe standing amid the wreckage.
Amy Biancolli - Houston Chronicle
The biggest casualties in this third installment of the robot franchise from director Michael Bay are storytelling and character development.
Tom Maurstad - Dallas Morning News
One can argue that summer is built for spectacle. Now if only it could be truly spectacular, too.
Lisa Kennedy - Denver Post
I have to admit that during the times that I wasn't feeling whatever intelligence the movie was pummeling out of me being actively insulted, I did kind of enjoy the spectacle.
Glenn Kenny - MSN Movies
The third outing for a herd of toys that should have stayed in their boxes.
Anthony Lane - New Yorker
Transformers: Dark of the Moon is a visually ugly film with an incoherent plot, wooden characters and inane dialog. It provided me with one of the more unpleasant experiences I've had at the movies.
Roger Ebert - Chicago Sun-Times
A work of ineffable soullessness and persistent moral idiocy...
Michael Phillips - Chicago Tribune
If you're going to make a movie in which some of your stars are animated toys and much of downtown Chicago is reduced to rubble, this is the way to do it: shamelessly, with no expense spared and no cliche avoided.
Michael Wilmington - Chicago Reader
The overwhelming sci-fi action spectacle is a merciless sensorial assault that leaves you with something akin to post-traumatic stress disorder.
Tirdad Derakhshani - Philadelphia Inquirer
If "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" isn't the summer's lousiest whiz-bang movie, it's only because there's so much competition.
Colin Covert - Minneapolis Star Tribune
OK, I'll admit it -- this is hard -- the big silly thing is sort of great.
Tom Long - Detroit News
Too long, too dumb and too loud, "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" is at least an improvement on its immediate predecessor.
Bill Goodykoontz - Arizona Republic
Even as it showcases a new degree of directorial control, Dark of the Moon remains a live-action cartoon, more a delivery mechanism for testosterone and axle grease than a satisfying dramatic experience.
Justin Chang - Variety
I miraculously survived a preview screening with a throbbing headache and slight nausea; others may not be so lucky.
Lou Lumenick - New York Post
The funniest, best-executed film in the talking, bleeding, Earth-protecting robots-that-look-like-cars-and-trucks series, "Moon" delivers the popcorn in gigantic fist-fulls of fun.
Roger Moore - Orlando Sentinel
By my watch, Transformers 3 is about 45 minutes too long, and that's the dull middle section before everybody starts wrecking Chicago in a reprise of The Blues Brothers.
Peter Howell - Toronto Star
Easily the best Transformers of the series, Dark of the Moon is everything that's boisterous and lively about our big studio cinema.
Laremy Legel - Film.com
The original Transformers wasn't a great movie, but at least it started out as fun, with Shia LaBeouf as a high-school student who discovers that his new yellow Camaro is actually an Autobot sent to earth to ward off evil Decepticons from their...
Leonard Maltin - indieWIRE
Don't worry about remembering the characters -- the movie certainly doesn't.
Liam Lacey - Globe and Mail
It's a momentous achievement and it will make untold amounts of money and you should see it even though it's hateful and empty and preaches the worst kind of reactionary violence without even really meaning it.
Andrew O'Hehir - Salon.com
Marveling at its grotesque gigantism doesn't make this two-and-a-half-hour-long movie any less dull.
Dana Stevens - Slate
In the future, maybe Bay should abandon using a screenwriter altogether and just fill up 90 minutes with disconnected images of robo-carnage.
James Berardinelli - ReelViews
The kick of the first movie was the pleasurable shock of humans and these transformative mechanical beings interacting. The third chapter is dedicated to little more than wanton destruction.
Kirk Honeycutt - Hollywood Reporter
It's a thin line between the idiotically incomprehensible Revenge of the Fallen and the merely incomprehensible of Dark of the Moon.
David Germain - Associated Press
For good or ill, Bay is the soul of a new machine, the poet of post-human cinema, the CEO of Hollywood's military-entertainment complex.
Richard Corliss - TIME Magazine
Watching Transformers: Dark of the Moon makes you die a little inside. Is this the future of movies? God help us! Michael Bay, you've done it again.
Peter Travers - Rolling Stone
Rarely has a movie had less of a soul and less interesting characters.
Richard Roeper - Richard Roeper.com
Between Bay's obsession to make his 3-D matter and the artistry of the special effects legions amassed for the project, the visual payoff is striking.
Betsy Sharkey - Los Angeles Times
Nowhere near as jaw-droppingly racist as the previous two installments. Is that damning with faint praise?
An overlong ordeal, devoid of excitement and intrigue.
John Hanlon - Big Hollywood
This movie is actively making the world a worse place to live. I am certain Michael Bay considers it his masterwork. He's right. God help us all.
Will Leitch - Deadspin
Transformers: Dark Of The Moon is one of the best blockbuster I've seen in years. No other action film can compare to what is undoubtedly Michael Bay's magnum opus, this is the film to beat this summer!
Matt Joseph - We Got This Covered
By a thin margin, the best film in the series. Funnier. But that's not saying much.
Easily transformed into the worst summer blockbuster of the year.
Jeffrey Lyles - Lyles' Movie Files
Despite an over-long and underwhelming build-up, the final hour of Dark of the Moon is an all-out action fest with some of the coolest visuals ever put to film.
Ben Kendrick - ScreenRant
If you like mindless spectacle, this is undoubtedly the frontrunner so far this year.
Ali Gray - TheShiznit.co.uk
[Bay], having seemingly learned nothing from the last film, allows just about all of the same mistakes to be made yet again.
Jeff Beck - Examiner.com
James O'Ehley - Sci-Fi Movie Page
Intensely juvenile, casually sexist, and blatantly stupid in ways that few if any over the age of "T for Teen" or bereft of a Y chromosome could enjoy. [3D Blu-ray]
Peter Canavese - Groucho Reviews
Nell Minow - Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
Remarkable action set pieces and stunning effects, but this third outing of Transformers is sometimes just as clunky and irritating as the second.
R. L. Shaffer - IGN DVD
Loud and long, this 3rd installment boasts a better plot and impressive CGI while maintaining its juvenile level of comedy - the target audience will likely love it.
Bruce Bennett - Spectrum (St. George, Utah)
You either take it on faith that the succession of scenes and exposition actually add up to a story and enjoy the ride, or sink 2 1/2 hours into the most expensive abstract disaster film ever made.
Sean Axmaker - MSN.com
...it takes a certain talent to create as much action as Bay does without generating an ounce of excitement.
John J. Puccio - Movie Metropolis
Transformers 3 is the archetype of a summer blockbuster-all explosions and chest-swelling bravado and snarky sidekicks and big guns and hot chicks and hero shots.
Lisa Ann Cockrel - Christianity Today
Better than the second film in the franchise, this film is still as hollow and unimportant as its predecessor.
Wesley Lovell - Cinema Sight
Michael Bay's latest adolescent fantasy for grown men is a moderate improvement over both of its predecessors, which is about the best thing it has going for it.
James Kendrick - Q Network Film Desk
The Transformers series comes to a merciful close with this hopelessly anticlimactic installment that is, as expected, just as underwhelming and unwatchable as its predecessors...
David Nusair - Reel Film Reviews
- National Post
Once the film stops trying to endear you to Shia's employment and girlfriend problems, the meaningless destruction and mayhem does have a measure of entertainment value.
Kevin A. Ranson - MovieCrypt.com
'I am the enemy of Decepticons and body hair, and I intend to remove both with lasers!' said Rosie.
Mark Ramsey - MovieJuice!
Motion Sickness Nightmare
Michael Black - ReviewExpress.com
The inexplicable, unwieldy narrative staggers with its brazen incomprehensibility as it clambers forward.
Gareth C. Evans - Future Movies UK
If you're eager to experience this slow-motion collision of state-of-the-art virtual reality, military melodrama, soft-core porn and cartoon, you probably already have.
Margot Harrison - Seven Days
Surprisingly coherent and entertaining.
Charles Koplinski - Illinois Times
The most obnoxious, noisy, tedious, ugly waste of film this year.
Ken Hanke - Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Transformers...mucking up my eyes...Transformers...robots I despise!
Bob Grimm - Tucson Weekly
Seeing the new Transformers movie was a little like agreeing to go on one more date with someone who has hurt your feelings twice already.
Tim Martain - The Mercury
The film's bigger, longer, louder battles don't create more excitement.
John Wirt - Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA)
When my bladder and I began analyzing it, we found many, many places where [running] time could have been effectively cut down.
Danny Minton - Fort Bend Sun
Dark of the Moon feels like less of a continuation of Revenge of the Fallen than a glorified repeat.
Ethan Alter - Television Without Pity
I quite liked the first film in this series but this one lacks heart, it is just two hours of major destruction.
Margaret Pomeranz - At the Movies (Australia)
While technically impressive, Bay still can't make a truly entertaining Transformers movie.
Jeff Bayer - The Scorecard Review
Didn't inform, reform or transform me. It was just a lot of explosions and noise signifying nothing. But for those who like that sort of thing it was perfect.
Jackie K. Cooper - jackiekcooper.com
Maybe the best-looking 3D movie I've seen this year.
Ignatiy Vishnevetsky - Ebert Presents At The Movies
Megan Fox is the lucky one; whether she quit or was fired, she's well out of this.
Jim Lane - Sacramento News & Review
Cinemas, quake in fear! Michael Bay has conceived yet another screen-smashing spectacle which sets the bar even higher for what blockbuster action can provide. Ignore all the annoying cliches and stupid bits - and just get some big-budget exhiliration.
Ben McEachen - Empire Magazine Australasia
Love him or hate him, Bay knows how to put together an Popcorn Action flick. What do people expect from a movie about Toy Robots? However, Fox was right when she quit this franchise.
Michelle Alexandria - Eclipse Magazine
It starts loud and just pounds along, and rather than the pulse-pounding adrenaline rush intended, a stultifying action fatigue quickly sets in.
Andrea Chase - Killer Movie Reviews
Hews to The Rule of Three ... darker in tone, more frenetic, assumes insider knowledge on the part of series aficionados, and, most importantly, it ups the ante in sophisticated CG battle effects.
Glenn Lovell - CinemaDope
Director Michael Bay's latest foray into endless, vapid dissonance is Transformers: Dark of the Moon. This time out we sit through 2 1/2 hours of CGI -- complete godawful inanity. The last hour is not equal to what animator Chuck Jones did in a minute.
Tony Macklin - tonymacklin.net
Michael Bay's mission, and he chose to accept it, was to make a Transformers movie sequel that was not as bad as the last one. The bar was set very low for the success of this mission and Bay cleared the bar. This sequel is better than the last one.
Robert Roten - Laramie Movie Scope
There's no doubt it could have been much worse. It could have been Transformers 2.
Henry Fitzherbert - Daily Express
Are there any ideas here? Other than to make more than $1.5bn, what is the point of a Michael Bay movie?
Jason Solomons - Observer [UK]
John Malkovich saves Dark of the Moon, the Transformers franchise, and the very concept of the effects-driven summer movie, but he is sadly only in the film for about ten minutes.
Tim Brayton - Antagony & Ecstasy
Bay's fascistic tendencies aren't quite as pronounced as in the last installment, but there isn't anything this man won't do for the sake of arousing himself.
Matt Brunson - Creative Loafing
More loud silliness.
Mindless escapist fare designed with the attention-deficit millennials in mind.
Kam Williams - NewsBlaze
Michael Bay's third "Transformers" installment in four years is a rambling mess of bastardized news reel footage, over-stylized CGI talking toy jousts, and light-hearted scenes with the comedic timing of Dick Cheney's pacemaker.
Mike Ward - Richmond.com
...trades in casual racism, sexism and murder, as well as an obsessive fetishization of war - all under the guise that it's just silly robot-bashing fun.
Jeff Meyers - Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
Dark of the Moon is just as loud, dumb and illogical as you expect. But when those neat 3D action sequences kick in, none of that matters.
Christian Toto - What Would Toto Watch?
A ridiculously entertaining thrill-ride that jettisons dialogue and characterisation to deliver two-and-a-half hours of testosterone-fuelled carnage.
Catherine Jones - Liverpool Echo
t won't transform your world or provide you with a new philosophical insight."Transformers: Dark of the Moon" is an action-packed war movie.
Linda Cook - KWQC-TV (Iowa)
There are those who claim Transformers: Dark of the Moon is light years better than its misogynistic and puerile predecessors. Do not believe their rancid deceit.
Brandon Fibbs - BrandonFibbs.com
The formula is basically the same: 2.5 hour runtime, awful script, dislikable protagonist and at least an hour of robot-based carnage.
Charlie Lyne - Ultra Culture
Bring a book.
Ed Whitfield - The Ooh Tray
The action scenes with fighting robots are amazing and I'd say they upped the ante again. But if Bay knows that's all we came for, why do we have to wade through another 90 minutes of insulting lowest-common-denominator stuff just to enjoy those scenes?
Eric Melin - Scene-Stealers.com
Retrato nao so do que Hollywood tem de pior, mas tambem da maneira com que esta enxerga um publico sempre disposto a engolir sanduiches de estrume desde que estes tenham um numeral no titulo e sejam apresentados em glorioso 3D.
Pablo Villaca - Cinema em Cena
No Megan Fox + no racist autobots + no pot brownies = better movie all around.
Kevin Carr - 7M Pictures
Bay is the master of fascist kitsch, and the special-effects sequences here are eyeball-stinging masterpieces -- progressive-rock album-cover cartoons that prophesy the extinction of humankind.
John Beifuss - Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Each subsequent Transformers film seems to prove one thing - that the first one was a fluke.
Matt Neal - The Standard
It is the 21st century nightmare, played out with a boy's toys and a boy's idiotic sensibility.
Anton Bitel - Eye for Film
If the whole is some way better than the deafening second instalment of the franchise, that doesn't mean it's a triumph.
Derek Malcolm - This is London
This time it's much easier to tell good guys from bad, which makes it a tad more engrossing than the first sequel. But this is still Transformers.
Tricia Olszewski - Washington City Paper
[If] your favorite element of these films is precisely their refusal to comply with your eyeballs' need for stuff to just stop for a minute every once in a while so you can focus and not get sick to your stomach, then yeah, lots more of that.
Dave White - Movies.com
Perfectly fun action, effects, and 3D use marred by some lazy storytelling.
Mike McGranaghan - Aisle Seat
As the credits rolled, however, I was so amped up over the extreme violence and non-stop assault on my senses, I realized that this is what Romans must have felt like just after they partook in their entertainment.
Grae Drake - Movies.com
Even though the astonishing special effects and stunt work are a sight to behold, just remember this: Your eyes will be the only organ in your body that will receive any type of stimulation.
Adam Tobias - Watertown Daily Times
It's taken him three tries, but Michael Bay has finally made a decent movie out of the Transformers.
Norman Wilner - NOW Toronto
'Dark of the Moon' is a slight improvement over the last film, and one can only go into seeing it as mindless fun.
Wilson Morales - BlackFilm.com
In which director Michael Bay perpetrates another junkyard fiasco that turns the volume up to 11 and the IQ to -1.
Anthony Quinn - Independent
A ridiculous and ridiculously fun 154 minutes of utterly unhinged, completely over-the-top robotic mayhem. And with a moral, no less.
Marc Savlov - Austin Chronicle
Despite its manifest improvements, there is something so sour and unpleasant about the new film that it left me almost nostalgic for the innocent idiocies of its predecessor.
Christopher Orr - The Atlantic
The Transformers threequel may be overlong, overloud and overly dumb, but the action - rendered in the most eye-popping, gob-smacking, jaw-dropping 3D since Avatar - is truly awesome.
Jason Best - Movie Talk
Like the Transformers themselves, [director Michael] Bay's wanton appetite for destruction seems to be insatiable, unstoppable and even insane.
Graham Young - Birmingham Mail
Delivering everything you want from a summer movie - action, romance, and spectacle - this is THE blockbuster of the year!
Alex Zane - Sun Online
I think I'm done with robots.
Justin Strout - Orlando Weekly
There are definitely bits of this third Transformers film that are ... well ... not quite as stupid.
A series far from its Prime
Jordan Farley - SFX Magazine
By avoiding contemplation about the emotional nature of its clanging, morphing, warring creatures ... Bay and executive producer Steven Spielberg accommodate the insensitivity that characterizes post-9/11 culture.
Armond White - New York Press
With what appears to be a limitless effects budget, Bay presides over reels and reels of intricately orchestrated mayhem, the scale of which is often so huge it assumes a truly mesmeric quality.
Jim Schembri - The Age (Australia)
[Bay's] firmly committed to the cinema of the short attention span. In Transformers, he's found his metier.
Sandra Hall - Sydney Morning Herald
You can't say enough bad things about this theme-park ride trying desperately to pass itself off as a genuine dramatic feature film.
Dennis Schwartz - Ozus' World Movie Reviews
While Dark of the Moon isn't a tired movie experience -- the wizardry has moments of near-Avatar brilliance -- it can be a tiring one.
Leigh Paatsch - Herald Sun (Australia)
This would be a solid 60-minute action movie, if only there weren't 97 crass additional minutes diluting it.
Eric D. Snider - EricDSnider.com
The effects and 3D have already received a lot of advanced praise; it sounds like I'm a spoil-sport but the CGI action has a glossy sheen that appears synthetic -- it's dazzling, but it feels, well, untrue, as in you experience it as an effect.
Peter Galvin - sbs.com.au
Shia LaBeouf returns to lead director Michael Bay's latest marathon of destruction
Robert Denerstein - Movie Habit
Bay really needs an editor.
Gary Thompson - Philadelphia Daily News
So totally surpassing its aggro-testosterone dictates that it plays out like an assault or, more precisely still, like a final conquering salvo.
Nick Schager - Lessons of Darkness
You can hate Bay's job, but, on this occasion, he's actually doing it.
Tim Robey - Daily Telegraph
There's nothing that makes us care about the characters or the life-and-death struggle between - wait, let's check the notes - yes, between the Autobots and the Decepticons.
Daniel M. Kimmel - New England Movies Weekly
With his usual disregard for story logic, Bay plunges us into another deafening metal-against-metal smackdown. Fortunately, ... it looks absolutely amazing.
Rich Cline - Shadows on the Wall
The spectacle is insane and the work done by the visual effects team is staggering
Andrew Hedley - Flicks.co.nz
I've never seen such a massive volume of stuff (the polite word for) thrown at the screen in all my life. It's like a heavy-metal Jackson Pollack, an action painting on a gargantuan scale.
A sensory-assaulting amusement-park ride, devoid of story or emotion that leaves your pulse racing, your stomach queasy and your head light enough to think it would be a good idea to get in line again.
Mathew DeKinder - Suburban Journals of St. Louis
James Cameron will be on the edge of his seat during the big bangs executively produced by the master of spectacle, Steven Spielberg.
Graham Young - Birmingham Post
A wearyingly overlong series of battles and explosions with the thinnest of connective tissue and an ADD-like disregard for follow-through.
Tasha Robinson - AV Club
The runaway success of the franchise, which has long raised its middle finger at our collective intelligence, would seem to suggest otherwise, but if 'Dark of the Moon' is the final chapter of this inane trilogy, it is also the least insulting.
Rossiter Drake - San Francisco Examiner
At some point merely extending an experience, whatever the attraction of the experience may be, doesn't add to it. It just makes you later getting home.
Steven D. Greydanus - Decent Films Guide
Has a handful of decent action sequences and is unlikely to disappoint fans of the franchise, but it's also frequently dull and suffers from the usual deficiencies in plot, tension, dialogue, character development and humour.
Matthew Turner - ViewLondon
I would say that this movie objectifies women, except for the obviously deep respect and affection it shows for objects.
Rob Thomas - Capital Times (Madison, WI)
Empty, soulless special-effects laden extravaganza that wows the eyes, but does nothing for the heart or mind. You were expecting something else?
Scott Nash - Three Movie Buffs
An empty-headed special-effects monstrosity that's just as incoherent, offensive and stupid as Revenge of the Fallen.
Sean Means - Salt Lake Tribune
Built as an apology, but remains slavish to some of the nonsense that made the previous picture unbearable. On the plus side: no Transformer testicles for this round.
Brian Orndorf - Sci-Fi Movie Page
[LaBeouf's] character spends his time, even more than ever, screaming and overreacting because of accumulating forces beyond his control. But at times you can fancy the actor himself is truly deranged with frustrations.
Antonia Quirke - Financial Times
Optimus is in his prime.
Gary Wolcott - Tri-City Herald
If you're looking for the Transformers 3 experience without having to actually endure through it, simply tip out your cutlery drawer onto a FHM centrefold whilst humming 'The Star-Spangled Banner'. Hey presto.
Anders Wotzke - Moviedex
Dark of the Moon doesn't live by the terms its detractors set, and that's one thing. But it doesn't live by its own terms either, and that's something else entirely.
Rob Vaux - Mania.com
On the awesome-spectacle front, director Michael Bay raises the action bar to a completely new jaw-dropping level with this second sequel.
- Radio Times
The thing is an unadulterated mess. The moments of entertainment that you get...get drowned in all the other detritus that Bay brings to the table.
Widgett Walls - Needcoffee.com
It's a lousy movie, but at least it's a lousy movie with a serviceable story, killer CGI and an action climax that goes on forever (at least an hour).
Tom Charity - CNN.com
There's actually lots to like here: phenomenal special effects and some truly astounding 3D sequences...
Francesca Steele - Sky Movies
'Transformers: Dark of the Moon' proves that the writers strike and Megan Fox's vapid presence weren't the only reasons that the last movie was such a tedious, empty slog.
Dan Lybarger - KC Active
Guys, stop telling Hollywood you want more story in your blockbusters. They don't get it. They think it just means adding more explanation. Each sequel has a BIGGER plot that overshadows the action by sheer magnitude.
Fred Topel - Screen Junkies
Maybe 3D does have a purpose; it makes Michael Bay's third Transformers movie worth watching.
Peter Keough - Boston Phoenix
[Bay's] wielding of the blockbuster format is almost profoundly carthartic.
Rob Humanick - Projection Booth
All the action stuff is suitably epic and has seemingly been staged with criticisms of the other movies in mind.
Luke Y. Thompson - E! Online
[Bay's] appetite for destruction and uncompromising creative outlook have set a new precedent for action excess that few would have the gall or financial backing to challenge.
Adam Woodward - Little White Lies
There's plenty of manly weeping onscreen when the decepticons start executing captured autobots, but as far as I could tell, there wasn't a damp eye in the theatre.
Maitland McDonagh - Film Journal International
I'm not the target audience, so I take my pleasure watching the quirky performances delivered by the great pros brought in to provide the human element, especially Alan Tudyk.
Lori Hoffman - Atlantic City Weekly
Deafening and exhausting, yet in this kind of shock-and-awe senory spectacle, the toys always emerge triumphant.
Susan Granger - SSG Syndicate
I was amused to read an interview with director Michael Bay last week in which he admitted that the second Transformers movie went off-track and assured fans that the third installment in the series was a return to form. Now that I've seen this...
Leonard Maltin - Leonard Maltin's Picks
Fine actors like John Turturro and John Malkovich are encouraged to strip-mine the scenery. Frances McDormand, playing a government bigwig, can now rest content knowing she has given the worst performance of her career. (Not her fault, either.)
Peter Rainer - Christian Science Monitor
Transformers: Dark of the Moon cannot be recommended when all is said and done. Considering how much more disastrous it could have been, however, this is one instance where two stars is almost something to celebrate.
The result is still like being urinated upon, but at least this time Michael Bay was considerate enough not to ingest asparagus first
Garth Franklin - Dark Horizons
You wouldn't know it from the advertising but Transformers: Dark of the Moon is one of the funniest films of the year.
Rebecca Murray - About.com
Bay is so afraid of boring his audience, he pitches every scene at the same high volume right from the first shot, and the effect is exhausting.
Rene Rodriguez - Miami Herald
With the constant LOUD NOISES, anaemic storytelling, non-existent emotional resonance and cringingly bad comedy, this expensive sound-and-light show is a bit like slamming your head repeatedly against an arcade pinball machine for 150 minutes.
Simon Reynolds - Digital Spy
But while it's headache-inducing, that's at least a slight improvement over the migraine machine that was Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.
LaBeouf displays an alarming penchant for screamy-face overacting, in which he's exceeded only by Ken Jeong, playing an irritating Asian-American, I'm afraid, Wang.
Kurt Loder - Reason Online
Bay doesn't care about your soul, he just wants your money -- but he at least makes sure you go home feeling exhausted and spent rather than vaguely dissatisfied. It's a fair exchange.
Stephanie Zacharek - Movieline
after four years and $550 million in practice, Michael Bay has finally figured it out
Bill Gibron - Filmcritic.com
There's little debate that the Chicago-set climax of Michael Bay's third film based on Hasbro's line of toys delivers what it promises. Sadly, the previous 100 minutes are nearly intolerable.
Brian Tallerico - HollywoodChicago.com
An improvement on Transformers 2, but then what isn't?
Chris Hewitt (UK) - Empire Magazine
I wouldn't have minded seeing a little Bay-hem on the big screen in Transformers 3; instead, with battles I didn't care about between characters I barely knew, all I got was idiocy, tedium and expense in the pursuit of Bay-nality.
A clanging, thrashing threequel that represents a near-complete upgrade over 2009's critically-despised Revenge of the Fallen.
Kevin Williamson - Jam! Movies
Shot by shot, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, like all of Bay's work, has a meticulous commercial sheen that's distinctive and beautiful, but he never lingers on any one of them for long, and they rarely make sense in sequence.
Scott Tobias - NPR
True, epic filmmaking, but its enormity actually undermines its cumulative impact: there's only so much mortal danger we can watch our heroes survive before it all becomes too much to swallow.
Todd Gilchrist - Boxoffice Magazine
There are obviously so many people working so hard for so many jaw-dropping moments that you wonder why no one thought to capture some of the original's charm. Who would complain?
Matt Soergel - Florida Times-Union
It's like the whole movie is on amphetamines. Dark of the Moon is high-speed orgies of random bloodless ultraviolence... with some jingo-jism stirred in for an extra kick...
MaryAnn Johanson - Flick Filosopher
Transformers 3 will be exactly what you expect it to be. Hate Michael Bay films and you'll hate this, love them and you'll love it.
Matthew Razak - Flixist.com
It's still chock full of embarrassing humour and soap opera drama, but Dark of the Moon is, thanks to a dizzyingly impressive near-hour climax, more a celebration of Bay's strengths than a laundry list of his many flaws. But only just.
Shaun Munro - What Culture
Has the same nonsensical plotting, headache-inducing visuals and lame attempts at comic relief as the other Transformers movies.
Josh Bell - Las Vegas Weekly
It's got problems, but when it comes to delivering jaw-dropping, massive spectacle, we're again reminded that no one can do Transformers quite like Michael Bay.
Neil Miller - Film School Rejects
Such a mess of demented conspiracy theories and hardware fetishization that it feels like what might have resulted if Lyndon LaRouche ran Radio Shack.
Peter Sobczynski - eFilmCritic.com
This third installment in the noisy, interminable, and in-all-ways robotic series is not quite as unforgivably bad as the last one, but that doesn't make it good.
Joe Lozito - Big Picture Big Sound
[a] hot mess.
Jordan Hoffman - UGO
A mountain of craft has been applied to a molehill of a story, and result is a film that fills your eyes with genuine cinematic magic, even as it treats you like a featherhead.
Shawn Levy - Oregonian
Transformers: Dark of the Moon is lifeless. You won't care.
Joshua Tyler - CinemaBlend.com
Slightly better than No. 2, but still crude and very violent.
Sandie Angulo Chen - Common Sense Media
I have to say that I think the robot effects are better here but maybe since they got rid of Megan Fox the effects team no longer had to spend all that time CGI-ing out her toe thumbs and could spend all their efforts on rendering the robots instead.
Beth Accomando - KPBS.org
Exposition like this starts sounding like so much gibberish, but Dark of the Moon makes it bloom on its own terms, fusing an actual semblance of reason into all those supercool action sequences.
Ted Fry - Seattle Times
Sense becomes not a Michael Bay joint.
Keith Uhlich - Time Out
If you're prepared to sit through two and a half hours of noisy cack to see a grand total of three decent special effects sequences, then I can heartily recommend it.
Robbie Collin - News of the World
the best 3D movie of all time --short as that timespan may be, it's quite something
Joseph Proimakis - Movies for the Masses
Bay has always been a visual director first and foremost and he doesn't disappoint here. Couple that keen eye with a script full of humor and, more important, characters you care about, and you've got the best "Transformers" film yet!
Michael A. Smith - Nolan's Pop Culture Review
Thrilling, well-designed action, top-drawer visual effects and a script more cohesive than in prior chapters make this Transformers a blast of summer movie adrenalin and the best of the three.
Diva Velez - TheDivaReview.com
One small step for action movies, one giant leap into the abyss of mindlessness.
Joe Williams - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Spatial cohesion seems to be lost on director Michael Bay, since no one can make heads or tails of his climactic smackdowns.
Radheyan Simonpillai - AskMen.com
This is pure, turn-your-brain-off, munch some popcorn, enjoy the explosions- summer fun.
Chris Bumbray - JoBlo's Movie Emporium
As with any auteur, there is, for better or worse, the question of the image.
Jaime N. Christley - Slant Magazine
A carnival of top-drawer special effects on top of effects punctuated by incoherent attempts to develop a story that provides a feeble excuse for another hurricane of effects.
Jonathan W. Hickman - Daily Film Fix
A bombastic, elephantine bore whose lack of visceral excitement is topped only by its excess of stupidity... should really be consigned to the cinematic scrap heap.
Frank Swietek - One Guy's Opinion
Dark of the Moon is 2 1/2 hours loud, with more clanging metal than a road tour of Stomp. Trucks and cars still turn into intergalactic warriors but what's remarkable is the way Bay turns two movies of cinematic scrap metal into a halfway decent third.
Steve Persall - Tampa Bay Times
I'll give Michael Bay credit for crisper, more lucid action scenes. But the plot is still a hot mess of endless exposition, double crosses, people running hither and fro without much reason, and a lot of unnecessary humans.
Christopher Lloyd - Sarasota Herald-Tribune
...altogether more coherent in its story, editing and spacial integrity, but it still has flaws aplenty, the most objectionable being directory Michael Bay's use of national tragedies like the Challenger explosion and 9/11 as grist for his mill.
Laura Clifford - Reeling Reviews
A self-important, 153-minute-long spectacle with no feeling, no meaning and a wonky sense of geography.
Duane Dudek - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Exhilarating and exasperating, awe-inspiring and stupefying, less a movie than a prolonged manic episode. In other words, it's a Michael Bay film.
Thomas Leupp - Hollywood.com
The 3D is sensational. Michael Bay delivers on his promise to the fans. The rest of us? Bay doesn't care about us.
Victoria Alexander - FilmsInReview.com
When the audience is rooting for the inanimate objects on screen, you're doing something wrong.
David Medsker - Bullz-Eye.com
It's too bad exec-producer Spielberg doesn't exercise tighter control over Bay's machine-like picture, which takes James Cameron's motto (size matters) to its silliest and illogical conclusion, resulting in a noisy, soulless metallic product.
Emanuel Levy - EmanuelLevy.Com
We won't see any better fireworks show this summer. Enjoy it. It's the Transformers movie that we always wanted them to make.
David Poland - Movie City News
The action in Dark of the Moon is clear and it doesn't feel like an assault because it's broken up with humor, a smidge of romance and even a little mystery. In other words, this is exactly what a summer movie should be.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul) - St. Paul Pioneer Press
Certainly nothing great but entertaining enough for what it is and tries to be (Full Content Parental Review Also Available)
Jim Judy - Screen It!
It's war propaganda for the twenty-teens; the rape-justification is just Chantilly.
Walter Chaw - Film Freak Central
This is not spectacle; it is commotion.
Mark Dujsik - Mark Reviews Movies
If Transformers 3 was produced purely to be an expose of what you can do with CGI in the modern era, it'd get full marks. It's truly is the ultimate showreel for Industrial Light & Magic. But it's meant to be a film, and sadly it's not very good at that.
Sam Bathe - Fan The Fire
The ultimate Michael Bay movie. It has moments of absolute greatness next to moments of utter, epic, monumental failure, which leaves you with a movie you can enjoy.
Willie Waffle - WaffleMovies.com
Bay has mastered and improved upon Cameron's technology to create a mind-blowing, nerd-tear shedding, action experience that is finally worth seeing in 3D!
Kevin McCarthy - BDK Reviews
It's not as good as the first one, but it's not as awful as the second one, with some summer movie chases, fights, and explosions that make it popcorn-worthy.
Nell Minow - Beliefnet
Given the choice between sitting through 154 minutes of Transformers: Dark of the Moon and being waterboarded, I plead: Waterboard me!
James Verniere - Boston Herald
To get to the much-ballyhooed final act, you have to suffer through a painful 95-minute comedic train wreck of flaunted jingoism and insulting anachronisms.
Erik Childress - eFilmCritic.com
A few minor adjustments notwithstanding, Transformers: Dark Of The Moon is very much the same bucket of bolts that audiences have come to expect from this franchise from its first two instalments.
Tim Grierson - Screen International
Michael Bay uses the 3D almost miraculously well, achieving real moments of vertigo with the extra dimension.
Katey Rich - CinemaBlend.com
Transformers: Dark of the Moon, the third in the Earth-destroying series, delivers the goods, plain and simple.
Bill Clark - FromTheBalcony
It's just a bunch of screen-saver bulls---.
I was subjected to over two and a half hours of visual and aural cacophony that did not entertain me and only succeeded in giving me a throbbing headache.
Robin Clifford - Reeling Reviews
Bay wants both a noisy metallic war and an intergalactic slow-motion ballet, but Transformers constantly creaks when it should soar.
Matt Pais - RedEye
Being able to go to the movies and not think is fine -- but that's different from going to a movie that assumes you can't think.
Stephen Whitty - Newark Star-Ledger
So bad, in so many ways... Bay has turned in his longest movie outside of Pearl Harbor (2001), and arguably his most soul-sucking to date.
Jeffrey M. Anderson - Combustible Celluloid
The plot, dialogue, action and humor all fly at a wicked pace, but Michael Bay keeps tight control, choreographing the combat especially so that's it's clear and engaging.
Annlee Ellingson - Moving Pictures Magazine
Transformers 3 is the Michele Bachmann of cinema. Despite all of its staggering flaws it will have its supporters, and its success is part of a trend of accepting less and pretending it's more.
A very long mess that's embarrassingly devoid of gut level thrills.
Catherine Bray - Film4
The look of the movie is worth five stars, but when you stir in a one-star script, you end up somewhere in the middle.
Clem Bastow - The Vine
... it's a pleasure to report that "Transformers: Dark Of The Moon" feels like the film that the franchise has been struggling to produce this entire time.
Drew McWeeny - HitFix
Bay has delivered another empty spectacle that is overlong and mostly tedious.
Thomas Caldwell - Cinema Autopsy
...like watching a chainsaw tear apart a toy box.
Josh Larsen - LarsenOnFilm
With director Michael Bay's unsubtle stamp splattered all over it, teenage boys and their elder brothers will be in techno heaven, although you need vertigo drops for the hand-held camera work and a degree in transformology to keep track of the detail
Louise Keller - Urban Cinefile
Four years, two sequels, a pair of racist robots and a conservative estimate of one billion robot punches later, I have to wonder if my enjoyment of that first instalment in the Transformers franchise was merely the result of low expectations.
Simon Miraudo - Quickflix
Transformers: Dark of the Moon may not be a great film, but it is largely great fun. ... It's nice to see the Transformers exit the screen (at least for now) on a high rather than low note.
Jim Vejvoda - IGN Movies
Bay has tamed the 3D beast to his advantage, and used it to distinguish the bots in the visual eyeball assault that his previous efforts were guilty of.
Lisa Giles-Keddie - Real.com
These Transformer movies are nonsense, of course, but they allow Bay and his team to push the envelope as far as movie technology is concerned and at least you feel get a sense of the shock and awe of giant hulking metal creatures clashing.
Baz Bamigboye - Daily Mail [UK]
Mostly this is fairly agonising: long, loud, lurid and lacklustre.
Tom Huddleston - Time Out
Transformers: Dark of the Moon is a fantastic feast of all-action entertainment... the first big summer blockbuster is one worth catching.
Mark Adams - Daily Mirror [UK]
Admittedly better than its predecessor, Michael Bay still hasn't learnt that impressive action sequences don't make up for woeful acting and no character development.
Anthony O'Connor - FILMINK (Australia)
[It] might struggle to equal the sheer exhilaration of Bay's 2007 trilogy-starter, but it's a whole lot more coherent and fulfilling than Revenge Of The Fallen.
Neil Smith - Total Film