Dark of the Moon - The Human Factor

Transformers 3 Dark of the Moon has now come and gone; and, with the conclusion of the Bay-directed franchise, that's probably it for the current collection of actors - the major ones, anyway - so what better time to rate their performances than now? Shia Labeouf has already expressed his disinterest in rehashing the role of Sam Witwicky, stating that he "has nothing left to contribute to the character". Perhaps a bigger paycheck (he made $10 million for Transformers 3) would convince him otherwise, as he does appear to be a fan favorite. Nonetheless, except for a few non-funny scenes (due mostly to the writing, and only a smidgen to his hyperactive acting, which got slightly formulaic by the third installment), he came across as good ole Sam.
The next assessment will likely be a bit contentious: the model/actress Rosie Huntignton-Whiteley. She caught a lot of flak for reprising Megan Fox's role in the film, despite the fact that, strictly speaking, she didn't reprise the role at all. Fox's character, Mikaela Banes, had broken up with Sam (Dark of the Moon let us know this in the very beginning with an unceremonious little jab at Fox's character), and Carly was his new girlfriend. Huntington-Whiteley did a serviceable job as eye-candy, which was established in her opening scene (!). Other than that, she certainly didn't detract from Transformers 3, despite the fact that her character was largely superfluous within the context of the movie. *Spoiler Alert: for example, why were so many human traitors guarding her in the film? Her detainment served no plausible purpose whatsoever, given that the Decepticons had already secured a means of controlling Sam with that slithering neuro-watch on his arm. But that, certainly, was not the fault of the actress...
Ah; yes... Major Lennox. Josh Duhamel looked uncomfortable for the first half of the film, unused to being in a pseudo-liaison role. It was somewhat incongruous with the fiery nature of his character through the first 2 movies, but this is hardly a complaint, as it happens in real life. Warriors sometimes get desk jobs. Only as the siege began, and he orchestrated the attack on the center of the threat (using a very cool human hang-glider scheme), commanding troops once again, did he find his groove. The same with Tyrese Gibson, who played Robert Epps in the films. He only returned to form after being thrust once again into warrior mode.
There were a few new actors, such as John Malkovich, in a role that was probably supposed to be funny, but seemed slapstick and over-the-top. While I certainly would accept such a role if I had the acting talent, I couldn't help but think "Oh how far the mighty have fallen" as I watched him overact a role that left him with little choice. As for John Turturro; well, he can do no wrong.
Other than that, the new characters were mostly forgettable, which isn't at all a bad thing in a movie that revolves around robots. Better than being bad and memorable! I hardly noticed the immortal Trekkie Leonard Nimoy's voice as Sentinel Prime, but then that's because the giant Prime was always fighting in one of Bay's hectic action scenes. Many of these actors are sure to be back as the series is too lucrative too halt at 3; just not the major one, Mr. Shia Labeouf.

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