All prequels are rubbish. There’s an exception or two (Godfather 2, the Planet of the Apes ones) but by and large, prequels don’t work – partly because you know how it’s going to end, but mostly because a lot of the wonder of a great film is the little mysteries. Boba Fett is awesome when he seems like an indestructible force of nature, and quite a bit less awesome when it turns out he’s just a clone of some bloke; and this applies to every “see how this villain became a villain” movie. We really don’t care, Hollywood. Of course, some prequels suck because they’re just no good, and that’s the arena we find ourselves in for “Transmorphers: Fall Of Man”.
If you’d like to read our review of the first “Transmorphers” film, then find it HERE
In this film’s first (but definitely not last) coincidence, Bruce Boxleitner as Officer Hadley Ryan is sat in a deserted side street, reading a book when a car speeds past him. After being caught by Bruce, stopped and sent on her way, her phone transforms into a little robot spider and kills her – oh, it turns out she’s the daughter of an important diplomat, which is only important because it gets her on the front page of the newspaper. Hadley is asked if he can inform the parents of her death…after it’s on that front page?
Everyone seems tired or bored in this film. No-one can muster up the slightest enthusiasm for anything in their lives, and even though our heroine Madison (Alana DiMaria) wears an awesome pink go-go dress for the first half of the film, she seems a bit listless too. Madison’s mum is having problems with her TV, and it turns out that her backyard satellite dish has transformed into a robot. Imagine if you’re the kid that gets a Transmorphers action figure for Christmas, and you get the robot that transfor…sorry, transmorphs into a satellite dish! The fun you’d have!
Madison’s mum has called the satellite repair people, and in the second (but still not the last) coincidence, it turns out the satellite repair guy is Madison’s ex boyfriend Jake, who’s also a former Army Special Forces guy, and the “WORLD’S LEADING EXPERT” on drones, remote controlled alien robots and so on. The last piece of the main cast is Jennifer Rubin, who’s apparently a Homeland Security scientist even though she does her work in a coffee shop and spends the entire film in jeans and a baggy shirt. I had a bit of a crush on her, way back, as she was the cute punk / metal fan in “A Nightmare on Elm Street 3”, and she still looks great although she’s either had some recent mouth surgery or is drunk through most of this film.
It turns out that we created the monster ourselves – the Roswell crash in 1947 was a Transmorpher, and every technological advance we’ve made since then is alien-inspired. One day, the technology just decided to start transmorphing for no reason, attacking humans and trying to send a message back to their home world.
Here’s where I’m going to need to be a bit spoilery, so on the very remote off chance you’re going to want to watch this film, stop reading now.
The film kicks off properly about now, with a few robots chasing our heroes and them figuring out fairly quickly the thing they’ll need to do to stop the alien invasion. Hadley realises that to save humanity (well, his daughter), he’s going to need to sacrifice himself, and he does so in a glorious helicopter explosion. Fade to black, job done, Transmorpher invasion stopped.
One small problem is that we’re only 48 minutes into the film. Wait, what? This makes absolutely no sense at all. It would be like Leonidas’ great sacrifice coming halfway into “300” (insert an example from a film you like here, if mine is no good). The film then comes loose of whatever moorings it had. Madison and Jake have a drink in a bar, and she tells him that Hadley always thought of him as a son. No, he didn’t! Their one scene together was not particularly friendly, but that’s not even the biggest problem in this scene. The aliens from Transmorpher world have finally invaded!
I’ve really pondered this next bit, because I want to do it justice. They leave the bar and run down a desert street. Round a corner comes Jennifer Rubin to save them, even though she can’t possibly have had any idea where they were! A few minutes later, they run into a few people we met at the beginning of the film, in an equally implausible coincidence. Again, this isn’t the weirdest thing in this sequence. It turns out that the cities have been evacuated into refugee camps which have been operating for some time. When the bloody hell did this happen? They were in a normal bar, having a normal drink, only hours of the film’s time ago. What on earth is happening, movie?
The way that giant robots are able to sneak up on our heroes, with no cover anywhere nearby, passed by without any comment, as did the pathetic non-ending. The fact the aliens we see at the end of the film look nothing like those we see at the beginning of “Transmorphers”, which this is a prequel to, washed over me like a foul, stinking river. The film broke me with Bruce Boxleitner’s death, and then smashed those pieces even further with their ignor-age of the most basic rules of film timelines. It’s so thoroughly incompetent that I don’t quite know what to say.
Is this maybe the first two episodes of a potential Transmorphers TV show, that (quite rightly) no TV company would touch with a ten-foot bargepole, edited clumsily together? It would explain the ludicrous ending to the first half. Ah, who cares. I’m getting towards being disgusted at the people who made this. Have you no shame? Why are people like you able to keep churning out the garbage that you do, but great directors are struggling to get funding? Are you a front for some drug cartel?
If you don’t see me again, it’s because I took the crew list of this film and used it as my assassination template. Avoid this film at all costs.