This film made me need therapy...
It’s been thirty years since one of my favourite cartoon movies hit the big screen, yep that’s right, today is the 30th anniversary of the great Autobot Massacre of 86, but more on that later.
After 2 massive and successful seasons of toy commercials, whoops I mean shows, the makers of Transformers decided to do a full length before moving onto the darker season 3. But to say Transformers: The Movie was a light hearted romp is a massive understatement, in the span of 10 minutes over half of the characters were killed.
The plot is pretty simple to follow, The Decepticons, led by Megatron launch an offensive against the Autobots on earth to cut off their supply of Energon (like a food and energy source for the Transformers). After a long drawn out battle with many deaths on both side, Optimus Prime, leader of the Autobots arrives with reinforcements and turns the tide, costing him his life.
It then goes on about stopping Unicron (voiced by Orson Welles) a huge planet eating transformer. But it is in this opening 10 minutes that scarred me for life, as I mentioned over half of the Autobots were killed off and at least 6 Deceptions, all characters I’d grown up with, but it was the big death of Optimus Prime the heroic leader, poster-bot and one thing every kid wanted to grow up to be at some point (myself included though I would of also been Megatron) was fatally wounded and bumped off. All so they could discontinue the toy lines and bring in new ones, bastards.
But I digress, this is a review on the film, not the franchise, that might come later. The voice acting was decent but it was the addition of several big names that helped give this movie some credibility, such as Leonard Nimoy, Judd Nelson, Robert Stack and of course the master himself, Mr Orson Welles. The soundtrack was an awesome mix of 80’s synch-pop and rock.
I still have a tender place for Transformers: The Movie in my heart, it’s one of my earliest film memories, but even when I let go of my childish nostalgia, I still felt myself enjoy it even after 30 years, I was still sucked into the plot, I still wiped the single tear off my cheek as Optimus died. While the Transformers franchise might be being destroyed right now, we at least have this old treasure to keep us going.