So let me clarify something right now, if you know you don't like Bay's movies OR the Transformers OR the characters in the Transformers movies (human or otherwise), then obviously you shouldn't be watching this movie. That would be like me paying money to suffer through Return of the King, when I fell asleep through LOTR, and didn't even bother with the second movie in the trilogy. I'm just saying that it's the third movie in a trilogy, and if you weren't on board at any other point with the other two, chances are you shouldn't be hopping aboard right now either since you're bound to be disappointed.
With that said, I found this movie was what the first movie should have been all along story and plot-wise (and yes, there is a plot and it's actually good). Are there silly moments? Sure, but no moreso than in the cartoons or the previous two movies. I actually found that the human characters were toned down a little bit (except for LaDouche's character), and were necessary to move the story along. Sure, the first hour could have been edited down a little more, but at least it wasn't three and a half extremely long boring hours of some assholes with big feet walking through a forest complaining about food and their unrequited love for each other all the time when they could have just flown on the back of a giant eagle to the fire pit to drop the stupid ring into....just to put things in perspective.
It has a two and a half hour running time, but (for me at least) it didn't feel like it. Everyone that survived the first two movies is here (except for the Ghetto-Bot twins, which were replaced with the annoying smaller bots from the second movie, and Megan "Toe-Thumb" Fox), and a few new additions to the cast as well make it a fairly large cast to deal with so a lot of the shenanigans that bogged down the second movie are (thankfully) gone.
This time around we are introduced to Sentinel Prime (voiced by Leonard Nimoy) who was leader of the Autobots during the Cybertron war (which we get to see a little bit of as well) and was lost along with a great weapon that could have ended the war. Needless to say, Megatron wants the weapon, as do the Autobots, and mayhem and robot-on-robot carnage ensues. Actually, there is a bit more to the plot, but to say any more about it would reveal some surprises.
This is the first time we get to see the real consequences of these giant robots unleashed on the human population. For me, some parts of the movie actually looked a lot like the Terminator series where the HK's are hunting down and killing people. And believe me, you see people getting killed. Vaporized, blown up, etc. I was actually kind of surprised considering the first two movies were almost as bloodless as a GI Joe vs Cobra fight.
The humor in the movie is a little juvenile, but actually toned down from the previous two movies. There are two fairly good Star Trek (the original stuff, not the bastardized JJ Abram's crapfest) jokes done at Nimoy's expense. And there are a surprising amount of a handful of good actors that make an appearance in this outing. Of course, it wouldn't be a Bay movie without at least one racist character, and that's left to Ken Jeong to fill that need of Bay's. Thankfully, it's not a lot of screen time.
I saw this in 2D, but from what I'm hearing (and what I saw in the movie) 3D was the way to go see this movie since it was actually utilized correctly. So if you're on the fence, take the 3D plunge, which you know is a rare endorsement from me.
Finally, it's a movie geared towards kids and those kids that grew up with the first two movies. It's a little dumbed down, but not as bad as the second movie had been. It's what you expect a summer sequel movie to be, loud, fun, and you get to hang out with some old movie buddies one last time.....at least until the next sequel.
Rating: Full Price + 3D. Yup, I actually said WITH 3D. I know I'm a little shocked myself.