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Bumblebee Review – A Simpler Take on Transformers

Bumblebee is not like its predecessors. It doesn’t feature a single city getting leveled, their aren’t long winded speeches by bad guys, and there aren’t enough Transformers on screen to make your brain hurt. It actually tells a personal tale that works, and if it is to be the true reboot of the live action Transformers movie universe, then I’m fine with how it starts things off.

You can check out my full review below in video or scripted formats.

Hey now fans of G1 Transformers, Matt Heywood here to review Bumblebee, or what I like to call, a Transformers film that doesn’t just eye hump you for two and a half hours straight. 

Seriously though, Bumblebee is not your daddy Michael’s Transformers movie, it actually successfully tells a personal story between a girl and a robot, and it doesn’t feature a single city being leveled, or more robots on screen than one human mind can handle. It’s a real movie, with a plot that you can follow and it doesn’t even involve some sort of MacGuffin goose chase to tell it. I wouldn’t call it a fantastic film, but it’s definitely a change of pace for the Transformers franchise, and one that I’d enjoy seeing continued. 

Bumblebee essentially reboots all of the previous Transformers films, and honestly that’s ok. They really lost their way anyway, so a more focused, personal tale like the one featured in this film is a nice shift. Bumblebee’s journey isn’t what I’d call the most interesting and action packed origin story, but it is a heartwarming one, which is a success for a film about a giant robot befriending a teenage girl. 

In fact, a majority of the movie is spent on their relationship, and the growth each of them experience through it. Bumblebee actually feels like a real character because of it too, so for the first time in a long time, it was easy to feel for him and the situations he and Charlie, who is played well by Hailee Steinfeld, get in. 

This movie opts to skip out on city destroying action set pieces for much more personal skirmishes, which is a relief, because the action finally compliments the story, and not the other way around. This Transformers movie isn’t just a special effects exhibition, it chooses those moments wisely, and executes them well Trust me, the Cybertron sequences will make any G1 Transformer fan drool, but they’re used sparingly in favor of smaller but just as intense action scenes. 

With all this being said, I still didn’t find myself absolutely blown away by Bumblebee. I enjoyed it, and appreciated how unique it is compared to the films that came before it, but it never really knocked my socks off. I think the story is too personal and focused on Bumblebee and Charlie that there wasn’t enough world building for my liking. While I appreciated the smaller scale, and the use of only four total Transformers on Earth, the narrative could’ve benefited from a few more connections to the wider Transformer narrative. There is a nice mid-credit scene, but I would have liked one or two more moments like it sprinkled throughout. 

Bumblebee, for its unique take on the live action Transformers movie universe, earns a 7 out of 10 review score from Team EB. It’s entertaining and fun, but not mind blowing. I do recommend seeing it in theaters for the big screen and sound effects, but I also wouldn’t blame you on passing it up for one of the other holiday releases now in theaters. 

Thanks for watching, Matt Heywood here signing off for EntertainmentBuddha.com, where we make you a better geek, one post at a time.

Review Summary

Story - 6
Cinematography - 8.5
Sound - 8
Acting - 6.5
Entertainment Value - 6

7

WATCH

Bumblebee may not be the most exciting movie around, but it tells an entertaining and heartwarming personal tale that doesn't require more special effects than our squishy brains can handle.

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Matt Heywood

The author Matt Heywood

Matt Heywood is the founder and EIC of EntertainmentBuddha.com where he strives to make you a better geek, one post at a time! When he’s not scouring the Internet for interesting nuggets of awesomeness he can be found in his secret lair enjoying the latest and greatest video games, taking pictures of toys, or talking Star Wars on EB’s Star Wars Time podcast show.