Transformers: The Movie (Day 1 Review)

in 1986, Generation One, Movie Review

Transformers Movies

From the beginning, Transformers the Movie is very "in your face", like most action movies of the time. The story wastes no time into plunging fans into a new world where old characters and new characters both interact.

Comments:

  1. In the Japanese release of Transformers the Movie, voices were dubbed for the sequence where Unicron devours Lithone. The voice work had the Lithonians screaming and yelling as Unicron ate them. This creates a very different mood than the silent devouring that the American version of the film depicted.
  2. In the Japanese release of Transformers the Movie, the beginning credits were replaced with a scrolling text, similar to that of the beginning of the Star Wars movies. This text explained the story of the Transformers while a Japanese narrator translated the text into Japanese.
  3. The animation is much more rich and detailed than the television show. The animation studio Toei, which worked on Transformers the Movie was and still is considered one of the higher end studios in Japan. Details such as the mechanics behind Laserbeak's head mounted camera and the interts of the Autobot shuttle are fantastic.
  4. Debate rages to this day over whether the Autobots shot up in the Autobot shuttle are truly dead. Although the intention was to kill them off, many fans have made up stories as to how they may have actually survived. This has spawned one debate that may never die: whether the character of Brawn is dead or not. Many insist that Brawn was just too "tough" to be felled by one blast from Megatron. Others insist that all the smoking his body was doing implied otherwise. The debate rages on.
  5. Although many fans found him annoying, Daniel is an interesting character since he is the son of Spike. This gives a more mature sense of continuity to the Transformers Universe since the character audiences were once expected to relate to had grown up. It would later be revealed that his wife was Carly, a character introduced in the original Transformers series.
  6. Another point of confusion for fans was the nature of Autobot city itself. Many fans thought at the time that Autobot city was meant to represent the Transformer Metroplex, who transformed into a city, robot and battle station. It would later be shown in the Transformers series that followed the movie that Autobot city was one entity while Metroplex was part of that installation. It was further explained that Metroplex's transformation cog had been damaged in the attack, thus explaining why he never transformed to robot mode to fight the Decepticons.
  7. During Autobot City's transformation sequence, one of Metroplex's smaller components makes a brief appearance. When the large turret swings around, that is actually Slammer, a small tank/tower that came with the Metroplex toy.
  8. Much to many a fan's delight, the movie introduced Blaster's group of cassettes and a new cassette from Soundwave. For all of the original season of Transformers, the Autobots did not have their own cassette force for Blaster to utilize. To many fans, this levelled at least one field for the Cybertronian wars.

Animation flubs, oddities and continuity glitches:

  1. When Optimus Prime checks with Jazz on Decepticon activity, Jazz appears on a large screen, giving the impression that he is on another Cybertronian moon. However, a few scenes later, Jazz and Cliffjumper are standing right next to Optimus Prime. Did the Autobots just not want to get up and walk to another room earlier?
  2. During the battle on the Autobot shuttle, the Constructicon Scavenger's head turns light grey/almost white for a scene and then switches back to its real dark grey color.
  3. As Kup is directing the Autobots putting up the barricade, one of the Autobots helping is Sunstreaker - who later appears arriving with Optimus Prime
    from Cybertron during Day Two! Whoops.
  4. When the overhead shot of Autobot City is done with Decepticons and Autobots flying back and forth, Ironhide is one of the Transformers flying by the screen, after his defeat on the Autobot shuttle!
  5. Watch carefully as the cassettes leave Blaster's chest compartment and transform. Both Rewind and Eject change colors as they transform in mid air.
  6. After Soundwave launches Frenzy, Ravage, Rumble and Ratbat, note that the two robots Frenzy and Rumble have the same color scheme as they fly towards Autobot city.
  7. This one is hard to see: When Springer runs into the room with the rocket launcher, on the far left side of the screen is the dead body of an Autobot that is shaped like Wheeljack, but has a blue and red color scheme. And if Wheeljack was already there, why did Arcee need to drag him and Windcharger in?
  8. As the Constructicons merge to form Devastator, note that the wing shaped chest piece stays yellow when in fact it should be purple.